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The page below is a sample from the LabCE course Cerebrospinal Fluid. Access the complete course and earn ASCLS P.A.C.E.-approved continuing education credits by subscribing online.

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Bone Marrow Contamination of CSF Sample

Bone marrow contamination of the CSF can occur if a vertebral process that is part of the spinal column vertebra is nicked or pierced when performing the lumbar puncture. In this case, both immature myeloid cells (indicated by red arrows in the image on the right) and erythroid cells (indicated by blue arrows) may be seen but are not a reflection of the patient's peripheral blood picture.