Bone Marrow Synoptic Reporting for Hematologic Neoplasms



The Pathology and Laboratory Quality Center (the Center) of the College of American Pathologists (CAP) has advanced blood cancer diagnostics by developing recommendations to standardize the basic components of a synoptic report template for bone marrow samples. The evidence-based guideline "Bone Marrow Synoptic Reporting for Hematologic Neoplasms" provides a framework for a synoptic format for clear, appropriate bone marrow reporting to advance patient safety and treatment of hematopoietic disorders.

The key questions that the panel addressed were:

  1. Considering the possible primary bone marrow morphologic descriptors, which ones are required on a synoptic report if completeness is the outcome of interest?
  2. Considering the possible ancillary studies that could be ordered on a bone marrow specimen, which ones are required on a synoptic report if completeness is the outcome of interest?
  3. What sequence of results reporting should be followed?
    1. Considering the options available, is there an optimal report format that should be used if ease of use, error reduction, and fewer incompletes are the outcomes of interest?
    2. Is there an optimal presentation for the elements of the minimum data set if the outcomes of interest are clarity and ease of use?
  4. Which components required for correct coding and data repositories should be included in the report?

The guideline includes nine statements to assist pathologists in producing complete and clear synoptic reports for hematologic neoplasms. The guideline tackles the complexities of the bone marrow organ and establishes an evidence-based framework that laboratories can use to ensure that their synoptic reporting templates for bone marrow samples provide the appropriate data that will be used to guide patient care.


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Guideline status: Active

Published online ahead of print: February 23, 2016

Originally published: September 2016