Henry Ford Hospital Medical Journal


This article reviews the experience of 101 transiliac bone biopsies performed in one year at Henry Ford Hospital and discusses the possible diagnostic value ofthe procedure in evaluating generalized metabolic bone disease. In 50 of the 101 cases, we used a pain scoring method to evaluate the acceptability of the procedure to patients. Data from our study and 18 other clinical centers were then analyzed for: 1) demographic distribution of patients who had a bone biopsy; 2) its acceptability to patients; 3) quality of the specimen and its relationship to the physician performing the procedure; 4) diagnostic yield of bone biopsy; and 5) complications of the procedure. Transiliac bone biopsy is reasonably acceptable to patients and does not sacrifice the quality of bone needed for diagnostic purposes. With improved instrumentation, it can be performed on outpatients and does not require elaborate physical facilities. We conclude that transiliac bone biopsy should be performed on all patients with metabolic bone disease unless the diagnosis is obvious.