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What is CML leukemia?

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Quick Answer

CML is an acronym for chronic myelogenous leukemia. It is a rare type of cancer that affects blood-forming cells in the bone marrow. After some time of development, CML spills over from the bone marrow to the blood and causes a number of symptoms, notes the American Cancer Society.

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Full Answer

CML is sometimes referred to as myeloid leukemia. This condition is not always easy to detect during its early stages. It is possible for individuals to have it for years without ever realizing it, according to Mayo Clinic.

Individuals with the condition may later develop signs and symptoms including loss of appetite, pale skin, high body temperature and general body weakness. Patients may also bleed easily and lose weight without any effort. Other symptoms that may act as indicators include pain or fullness below the ribs on the left side and sweating profusely at night.

Doctors normally diagnose this condition after various tests including a physical examination, bone marrow tests, blood tests and tests to find the Philadelphia chromosome. Treating this condition during its first stage is easiest. The condition goes through chronic, accelerated and blastic stages. Biological therapy, chemotherapy, blood stem cell transplant and the use of targeted drugs are all options available for treatment, according to Mayo Clinic.

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