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Polycythaemia vera is a blood condition where there is uncontrolled production of blood cells by the bone marrow. People with polycythemia vera will have too many red blood cells and may also have higher than normal white blood cells and platelets.
Patients with polycythaemia vera present in different ways.
At present there is no routine screening for polycythaemia vera.
Polycythaemia vera occurs when there is a mutation in genes which is involved in the regulation of blood cell production. The cause of the gene mutation is unknown and is usually not an inheritable mutation.
To make a diagnosis of polycythaemia vera, patients will require blood tests including a full blood count and tests for the mutations (gene alterations) found with MPN. The gene alteration usually associated with polycythaemia vera is the Jak2 V617F or Exon12 mutation.
The treatment of polycythaemia vera is two-pronged:
Good control of pre-existing conditions such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol and diabetes mellitus also helps to decrease the risk of blood clot.
A healthy lifestyle including regular exercise and a healthy diet is also recommended.
This can be achieved by: