Jerry Le Pow Spivak, MD, discusses diagnosing essential thrombocythemia.
Jerry Le Pow Spivak, MD, professor of medicine and oncology, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, director, Center for the Chronic Myeloproliferative Disorders, Johns Hopkins Medicine, discusses diagnosing essential thrombocythemia (ET).
Patients who present with high platelet counts could have a range of benign or malignant disorders, including polycythemia vera, ET, or primary myelofibrosis. Notably, patients with ET often have a normal lifespan. As such, if a patient is asymptomatic, they do not require immediate therapeutic intervention, Spivak explains. However, these patients should be monitored closely for disease progression.
It is important to rule out other causes of high platelet counts, such as iron deficiency, infection, inflammation, or other comorbidities, prior to diagnosing a patient with ET, says Spivak. Should a patient have ET, next-generation sequencing can inform whether a mutation, such as JAK2, CALR, or MPL, caused the disease, Spivak concludes.