NCCN Guidelines for Patients® | Myeloproliferative Neoplasms

11 NCCN Guidelines for Patients ® : Myeloproliferative Neoplasms, 2018 A key feature of PMF is scarring (or fibrosis) of the bone marrow. However, there may be high blood counts but no scarring in early phases of PMF. The scar tissue may replace bone marrow. With less bone marrow, the number of blood cells may drop. As a result, the spleen and liver may begin to make blood cells and grow larger in size (enlarge). These organs may also enlarge because they trap abnormal blood cells. PMF occurs in people without a history of bone marrow problems. However, MF ( m yelo f ibrosis) can also develop in people with either ET or PV. If this occurs, it is called post-ET myelofibrosis or post-PV myelofibrosis based on the cancer. Health risks MPNs are chronic blood cancers. They do not go away on their own and, for now, there’s no cure. Without treatment, MPNs get worse over time. It can take many years for MPNs to worsen to the point of causing symptoms. Symptoms People may have symptoms for a long time before they learn they have a MPN. The most common symptom is feeling tired despite sleep (fatigue). Other symptoms include itchy skin, night sweats, bone pain, fever, and weight loss. These symptoms differ across the MPNs. Read Part 2 for more information about symptoms. Blood clots and bleeding MPNs can lead to serious health conditions. MPNs increase the likelihood for blood clots (thrombosis) and bleeding. Bleeding is often minor but can be severe. Blood clots can block blood vessels and can sometimes be deadly. See Figure 4 . Blockage of 1 MPN basics Health risks Figure 4 Blood clot This Figure depicts the formation of a blood clot in a leg vein. On the far right, a piece of the blood clot has detached. It could travel through the heart to the lungs and get stuck. This is called a pulmonary embolism. Pulmonary embolisms can be deadly. Illustration Copyright © 2017 Nucleus Medical Media, All rights reserved.