What Are Common MF Symptoms?

In addition to the symptoms caused by an enlarged spleen, myelofibrosis (MF) can affect the body in other ways. The table below lists common symptoms. Remember, you may have some of these symptoms but not others, as this condition is different for everyone.

MYELOFIBROSIS SYMPTOM

CAUSE OF SYMPTOM

Itching

Night sweats

Fever

Unexplained weight loss

Bone pain

Inflammation caused by high levels of certain proteins (cytokines) in the blood

Fatigue

Bruising or bleeding easily

Having too few red blood cells or platelets

Can MF Symptoms Vary or Change Over Time?

The more common symptoms of MF, such as tiredness (fatigue), itching, and night sweats, may come and go, or they may be more severe at certain times. Be sure to tell your Healthcare Professional about any symptoms you notice, even if you do not think they are related to MF.

Icon of a stethoscope

Since MF can progress over time, it is also important to talk with your Healthcare Professional early on about your symptoms and how they affect your life. Let your Healthcare Professional know if there are activities you used to enjoy that you are no longer able to do.

Watch as physician assistant Amber Essenmacher reviews important topics that can help you talk with your Healthcare Professional about your MF.

Why Is Spleen Size Important in MF?

When the bone marrow cannot make enough normal blood cells, the spleen begins to make them. This causes the spleen to grow larger. An enlarged spleen is a common finding in MF. The medical term for an enlarged spleen is splenomegaly (splee-nuh-MEG-uh-lee).

What Are the Symptoms of an Enlarged Spleen?

Symptoms of an enlarged spleen can include

  • Pain or discomfort in the abdomen or under the left ribs
  • Feeling full when you haven’t eaten or have eaten very little

It is important to tell your Healthcare Professional if you have any of these symptoms.

Hear an MPN expert explain why spleen size is important for people living with MF.

What Are Common Findings in MF?

The table below lists common findings in MF.

COMMON FINDINGS IN MYELOFIBROSIS

HOW YOUR HEALTHCARE PROFESSIONAL IDENTIFIES THE FINDING

Enlarged spleen

Usually noticed by feeling the abdomen; can also be seen through procedures such as ultrasound, computed tomography, or MRI

Gene mutations: changes in genes associated with myelofibrosis

Blood tests

Scar-like tissue in the bone marrow (also called "fibrosis")

Bone marrow biopsy takes a sample of your bone marrow with a needle

Change in the form and number of white blood cells (WBCs), red blood cells (RBCs), and platelets

Blood is studied under a microscope to look at the shape of the blood cells and to see if abnormal blood cells are present. A complete blood count (CBC) and platelet count can be conducted to determine the number of various blood cells

What Should People With MF Know About Anemia?

With MF, scar tissue can build up in the bone marrow, preventing it from making enough red blood cells, resulting in anemia. Anemia is common in people living with MF. Anemia can be associated with certain symptoms that are important to monitor. If you’re experiencing anemia, be sure to discuss it with your Healthcare Professional.

Why Is Tracking MF Symptoms Important?

Because MF is a progressive condition, it has the potential to change over time. That means that some of the signs and symptoms may change as well. This is why it’s important to take an active role in monitoring your condition over time by tracking your MF on a regular basis.

Regular symptom tracking provides a number of valuable insights. Not only does it help identify trends within your health, but it can also help you and your Healthcare Professional better understand how to manage and adjust your care over time.

It is important to keep track of any symptoms you have, even if you are not sure they are related to your MF. Don’t assume that any symptom is too minor or not worth recording. Tracking and talking to your Healthcare Professional about your symptoms helps you both:

  • Understand how MF is affecting you
  • Follow how your MF is changing over time
  • Discuss options for managing your MF and its symptoms

Remember, these insights will help your Healthcare Professional understand what’s happening with your condition over time—and that can help ensure that your MF management approach is the right one for you.

Use the MF Tracker

Track symptoms, blood counts, and blood transfusions related to MF

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Meet J.G. Jones

Hear a podcast about this comic book artist’s MF journey

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