(Polycythemia Vera [PCV]; Polycythemia Rubra Vera [PRV]; Erythremia)
|Location of Active Bone Marrow in an Adult|
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- Sex: male (twice as likely to be affected as women)
- Age: over the age of 40 years old; only very rarely are individuals under the age of 40 diagnosed with primary polycythemia.
- Race: Caucasians
A history of:
- Abnormal or increased production of platelets in the blood
- Overall increase in the total number of red blood cells in the blood
- Blood clotting or thickening of the blood in the veins and major arteries
- Abnormal and heavy bleeding due to a cut or a nosebleed
- Intense and frequent bone pain and/or muscle pain
- Headaches, dizziness, or gastrointestinal symptoms
- Difficulty or labored breathing
- The color of the skin appears reddish
- Fatigue (a state of weariness following a period of mental or physical activity)
- Inability to concentrate
- Deep vein thrombosis , heart attack , or stroke
- Intense itching after a warm or hot bath, shower, or any activity that requires soaking your skin in warm or hot water
- Complete blood count (CBC) test—to measure your hematocrit level (the proportion of red blood cells in the blood)
- Bone marrow biopsy (where a hollow-needle is inserted into your pelvic bone to remove a sample of your bone marrow cells)—to determine the rate at which the bone marrow is overproducing red blood cells. This test is also used to help determine what type of medication and other treatment options will slow the production of red blood cell in the bone marrow.
American Society of Hematology http://www.hematology.org
The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society http://www.lls.org
The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov
BC Health Guide http://www.bchealthguide.org
Capital Health http://www.cdha.nshealth.ca/
Berk PD, Goldberg JD, Donovan PB, et al. Therapeutic recommendations in polycythemia vera based on Polycythemia Vera Study Group protocols. Semin Hematol . 1986;23:132-143.
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Golden C. Polycythemia vera: a review. Clin J Oncol Nurs . 2003;7:553-556.
Kessler CM. Propensity for hemorrhage and thrombosis in chronic myeloproliferative disorders. Semin Hematol . 2004;41(2 Suppl 3):10-14.
Munson BL. Myths & facts…about polycythemia vera. Nursing . 2005;35:28.
Passamonti F, Rumi E, Pungolino E, et al. Life expectancy and prognostic factors for survival in patients with polycythemia vera and essential thrombocythemia. Am J Med . 2004;117:755-761.
Ruggeri M, Tosetto A, Frezzato M, et al. The rate of progression to polycythemia vera or essential thrombocythemia in patients with erythrocytosis or thrombocytosis. Ann Intern Med . 2003;139:470-475.
Solberg LA Jr. Therapeutic options for essential thrombocythemia and polycythemia vera. Semin Oncol . 2002;29(3 Suppl 10):10-15.
Spivak JL. The optimal management of polycythaemia vera. Br J Haematol . 2002;116:243-254.
Stuart BJ, Viera AJ. Polycythemia vera. Am Fam Physician . 2004;69:2139-2144.
Tefferi A. A contemporary approach to the diagnosis and management of polycythemia vera. Curr Hematol Rep . 2003;2:237-241.
Tefferi A. Polycythemia vera: a comprehensive review and clinical recommendations. Mayo Clin Proc. 2003;78:174-194.
- Reviewer: Igor Puzanov, MD
- Update Date: 09/01/2011 -
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