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Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia


  • Published: 2009-04-01 : Author: Sally Rider
  • Synopsis: Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia or CML is classified by phase chronic accelerated and blast phases.

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Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia (CML) is classified by phase: chronic, accelerated and blast phases. The accelerated and blast phases of CML refer to those phases of the disease when increased immature white blood cells (blasts) are made and do not mature.

Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia (CML) is classified by phase: chronic, accelerated and blast phases.

The accelerated and blast phases of CML refer to those phases of the disease when increased immature white blood cells (blasts) are made and do not mature. When this happens, the disease behaves similarly to acute leukemia.

Alternate Names: Chronic Myeloid Leukemia (Blast phase), CML (Blast phase), Chronic Granulocytic Leukemia (Blast phase)

Symptoms include: fever, night sweats, bone pain and weight loss. When tiredness, fever, and an enlarged spleen occur during the blast phase, it is called blast crisis.

CML is diagnosed with tests and procedures such as:

complete blood count (CBC), bone marrow aspiration and biopsy, cytogenic analysis of the blood and/or bone marrow and reports that address the Philadelphia chromosome and molecular assay of the blood or bone marrow looking for bcr-abl gene. In order to diagnose the blast phase at least 20% of peripheral white blood cells or nucleated bone marrow cells must be blasts.

Treatment of CML has improved with the use of tyrosine kinase inhibitors which block the action of this molecule and its effects on white blood cell production. Standard chemotherapy agents are used along with immunotherapy (interferon) and bone marrow transplantation.

Blast phase is the final phase in the evolution of CML. It behaves like acute leukemia with rapid progression and short survival.


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