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

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Medulloblastoma in Cerebrospinal Fluid

Medulloblastoma is a malignant brain tumor that originates in the cerebellum. It is included in the family of primitive neuroectodermal tumors (PNETs). It is a highly invasive brain tumor, which is known to spread through the brain and CSF.
Patients with medulloblastoma will typically have spinal taps performed after resection to evaluate for the presence of metastasis. These samples are then evaluated in the laboratory.
This cytospin shows multiple large, bizarre tumor clumps. The arrows point to tumor cells that appear to have ingested other tumor cells, a characteristic sometimes referred to as cannibalism.