B-cell leukemia/lymphoma panel is a blood test that looks for certain proteins on the surface of white blood cells called B-lymphocytes. The proteins are markers that may help diagnose leukemia or lymphoma.
How the Test is Performed
A blood sample is needed.
The blood sample is sent to a laboratory, where a specialist checks the cell type and characteristics. This procedure is called immunophenotyping. The test is usually done using a technique called flow cytometry.
How to Prepare for the Test
No special preparation is usually necessary.
How the Test will Feel
When the needle is inserted to draw blood, some people feel moderate pain. Others feel only a prick or stinging. Afterward, there may be some throbbing or a slight bruise. This soon goes away.
Why the Test is Performed
This test may be done for the following reasons:
- When other tests (such as a blood smear) show signs of abnormal white blood cells
- When leukemia or lymphoma is suspected
- To find out the type of leukemia or lymphoma
What Abnormal Results Mean
Abnormal results usually indicate either:
- B-cell lymphocytic leukemia
There is little risk involved with having your blood taken. Veins and arteries vary in size from one person to another and from one side of the body to the other. Taking blood from some people may be more difficult than from others.
Other risks associated with having blood drawn are slight, but may include:
- Excessive bleeding
- Fainting or feeling lightheaded
- Multiple punctures to locate veins
- Hematoma (blood accumulating under the skin)
- Infection (a slight risk any time the skin is broken)
B lymphocyte cell surface markers; Flow cytometry - leukemia/lymphoma immunophenotyping
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Bierman PJ, Armitage JO. Non-Hodgkin lymphomas. In: Goldman L, Schafer AI, eds. Goldman-Cecil Medicine. 25th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier Saunders; 2016:chap 185.
Borowitz MJ. Flow cytometry in oncologic diagnosis. In: Niederhuber JE, Armitage JO, Doroshow JH, Kastan MB, Tepper JE, eds. Abeloff's Clinical Oncology. 5th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier Saunders; 2014:chap 15.
Connors JM. Hodgkin lymphoma. In: Goldman L, Schafer AI, eds. Goldman-Cecil Medicine. 25th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier Saunders; 2016:chap 186.
Review Date 1/19/2018
Updated by: Richard LoCicero, MD, private practice specializing in hematology and medical oncology, Longsteet Cancer Center, Gainesville, GA. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.