Bone marrow nonneoplastic

Noninfectious systemic disorders

Alcohol abuse

Last author update: 1 December 2006
Last staff update: 5 January 2021

Copyright: 2002-2023,, Inc.

PubMed Search: Bone marrow alcohol abuse

Nat Pernick, M.D.
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Cite this page: Pernick N. Alcohol abuse. website. Accessed June 3rd, 2023.
Definition / general
Case reports
Microscopic (histologic) description
  • May cause hypocellular marrow or reactive myeloblastosis with up to 34% blasts
  • Vacuoles in proerythroblasts and other precursors
  • Also ringed sideroblasts and iron granules in plasma cells
Microscopic (histologic) images

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Marked megaloblastic features

Markedly hypercellular

Bone marrow: intracytoplasmic vacuoless

Multiple coarses granules

Plasma cell: iron granules forming plaque

Hemosiderin granules in normoblast

Peripheral smear description
  • Leukopenia with vacuoles, hypersegmentation of neutrophils, thrombocytopenia
  • Iron granules in plasma cells and other cells
Peripheral smear images

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Peripheral blood erythrocytes

Vacuolation of peripheral blood cells

Electron microscopy images

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Marrow plasma cell has dense aggregate of iron

Iron laden organelle
in upper cell may
correspond to
microscopic plaque

Differential diagnosis
  • Cytoplasmic vacuoles also due to copper deficiency, hematogones, lipid storage diseases, lipid granulomas, monocytes, Mott cells
Additional references
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