Hairy Cell Leukemia

Complete Blood Count
A complete blood count (CBC) is a procedure in which a sample of blood is drawn and checked for the:
 
  • Number of red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets
  • Amount of hemoglobin (the protein that carries oxygen) in the red blood cells
  • Portion of the sample made up of red blood cells.
 
Peripheral Blood Smear
A peripheral blood smear is a procedure in which a sample of blood is checked for:
 
  • Cells that look "hairy"
  • The number and kinds of white blood cells
  • The number of platelets
  • Changes in the shape of blood cells.
 
Bone Marrow Biopsy
A bone marrow biopsy is used to remove a small piece of bone and bone marrow by inserting a needle into the hipbone or breastbone. A pathologist will then view the bone and bone marrow samples under a microscope to look for signs of cancer.
 
Immunophenotyping
Immunophenotyping is a test in which the cells in a sample of blood or bone marrow are looked at under a microscope to check the pattern of proteins that are on the surface of the cells. Hairy cells have a certain pattern.
 
Computed Tomography Scan 
A computed tomography (CT) scan is a procedure that makes a series of detailed pictures of areas inside the body, taken from different angles. The pictures are made by a computer linked to an x-ray machine. A dye may be injected into a vein or swallowed to help the organs or tissues show up more clearly. This procedure is also called computerized tomography or computerized axial tomography (CAT). A CT scan of the abdomen (stomach) may be done to check for swollen lymph nodes or a swollen spleen.
 
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