Prognosis with Polycythaemia Vera
Your individual situation and health history, as well as the ways you respond to treatment, can all affect your prognosis. Your haematologist will be able to provide you with a more accurate picture.
In general, patients with PV who do not progress to myelofibrosis (MF) or leukaemia can expect to have a normal to slightly reduced life expectancy their disease is well controlled with treatment.
In some patients the disease may remain stable or gradually progress over time. This means that you may never experience many of the symptoms and outcomes that you read about – or if you do, it may not be for many years. Many people with PV live normal lives for years at a time without experiencing any complications, such as heart attacks or strokes. However, even if you are experiencing no symptoms, it is still important that your haematocrit level, WBC, and platelet levels are controlled in order to reduce the risk of serious problems such as major thrombosis and cardiovascular complications.
In a minority of cases, PV can progress into myelofibrosis (MF) or acute myeloid leukaemia (AML).
If you have any concerns, talk to your haematologist.
Prognosis can be a difficult but very important area to discuss with patients and is, of course, always individual for each patient and individual to the circumstance and stage of disease that the patient might have.