What Are Myeloproliferative Neoplasms (MPNs)?

Myeloproliferative neoplasms (MY-ah-lo-pro-LIF-er-uh-tiv NEE-o-plaz-uhms), or MPNs, are a group of rare, chronic blood cancers in which a person’s bone marrow does not function properly. Bone marrow is a spongy tissue inside of the bone, and is the primary place where blood cells are made. In people with MPNs there is an abnormal production of these blood cells. This can cause a host of symptoms and complications.

Mutations, or changes in certain genes, are thought to be a major cause of what are known as Philadelphia chromosome–negative MPNs, or "classical" MPNs. Even people who do not have these mutations may have MPNs.

A few important things to know about MPNs:

  • MPNs are chronic conditions. Chronic conditions last for a long period of time and may never go away
  • MPNs are also considered to be progressive conditions, meaning that they may worsen over time
  • MPNs can sometimes transform into another blood cancer
  • MPNs can affect people at any age, but they are more common in older adults

Once you have been diagnosed with an MPN, it is important to know the state of your condition and to get the appropriate care. Be sure to schedule regular visits and conversations with your healthcare team.

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Learn More About MPNs Check out MPN Voices Out Loud, a podcast series brought to you by Voices of MPN

How Are MPNs Classified?

MPNs can be classified based on the presence or absence of the Philadelphia chromosome. The three most common Philadelphia chromosome–negative MPNs are:

Each type of MPN is characterized by a particular pattern of abnormal blood cell production that usually impacts one blood cell type more than the others.

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Looking for More Comprehensive MPN Information? Read Beyond the Basics: Information Every Patient With an MPN Should Know

Why Is It Important to Track My MPN?

MPNs are progressive conditions, which means that they can worsen over time. Regularly keeping track of your blood counts, symptoms, and medical procedures can help you take an active role in your ongoing MPN care. That’s because keeping an ongoing record of how your MPN may be changing over time can reveal important insights about your disease status, which can help ensure that you are having the right discussions with your Healthcare Professional.

Remember, the more informed you are about your own health, the better you are able to partner with your care team as an advocate for your care.

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Use the MPN Tracker Tool Track symptoms, blood counts, and procedures related to your MPN

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