Burkitt Lymphoma (BL) Is an aggressive B-cell neoplasm characterized by destructive fast-growing tumors most often located in and around the jaw and facial bones (Rubin & Reisner, 2013).—The differential diagnosis process for Burkitt lymphoma usually begins with a biopsy of the lymph nodes, neoplasm, or bone marrow. Lymphocytic blasts in the bone marrow of BL patients appear deeply basophilic and often contain multiple small vacuoles filled with lipids (Md, 2017). Though this microscopic appearance may tip off healthcare providers to a possible Burkitt lymphoma case, these vacuoles are not specific for BL and further testing must be performed to rule out other similarly presenting lymphomas. A slide finding distinctive to BL would be the “Starry sky” morphology seen in macrophages of the lymph nodes (Md, 2017). The description refers to the speckled appearance of the macrophage cytoplasm, which has become rich in cellular debris from increased phagocytosis of apoptotic lymphoma cells (Md, 2017).
For my Steam Project I painted important cells for Burkitt Lymphoma diagnosis. The cells labeled A are lymphocytic Blasts with lipid filled vacuoles seen in the bone marrow of BL patients. The cells labeled B are “starry sky” macrophages found in lymph node biopsy specimens.