Blood/Blood Cells and Cellular Components ›› Red Blood Cells ›› Abnormal

Burr cell RBC (Echinocyte)*

Microscopic Features:
  • May be smaller or the size as a normal RBC
  • Regular broader-base short blunt projections of red cell membrane
Normal % blood-PB, marrow-BM, lymphoid tissue-LN:
  • PB: Rare to None
  • BM: Rare to None
  • LN: Rare to None
May Resemble:
  • Spur cell
  • Schistocyte
  • Spherocyte
  • Normal Mature RBC
Differential Diagnoses:

Increased in:
Artifact (e.g. older blood specimen)
Uremia (e.g. chronic renal disease)
Liver disease

Classic Immunophenotype:
  • N/A
Cartoon Image:

  • Most often they are due to an artifact of smear preparation. Also one must inquire about the age of the blood sample.