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What do they look for at the 6 mth after diagnosis BMB?

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#1 luvmybees24


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Posted 02 February 2012 - 12:30 AM

I should ask my Dr. these questions but when I get there I #1 freeze up #2 am scared to know the answers. I'm having a BMB in May 6 mths after my November diagnosis. What are they looking for? Is it remission? He told me but I forgot. He said after the results of that they will decide how to adjust my medication. I am having a blood smear test in a couple weeks and I think some other kind of test. He said they were more extensive blood tests than my usually monthly blood count, liver and kidney function tests. Do you go into remission on this drug? What exactly happens? Even if someone could point me to updated links to read, that may help!


#2 tiouki


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Posted 02 February 2012 - 06:52 AM

Hello Laura.

First don't hesitate to ask questions doctors are here to give answers it's their job. Plus in your case there is no need to be excessively scared I will answer to your other post later.

BMB enables to see the percentage of leukemic cells in your bone marrow. It thus estimates the "remaining quantity" of CML cells, compared to normal cells. At 6 months with Tasigna you should be close to 0% leukemic cells. It doesn't mean leukemia is gone but simply that the number of CML cells is very limited compared to healthy cells.

There are several levels of what you call "remission". The first one is hematological response (or remission) which means that your blood counts are normal (which is the case for you I believe).

If the number of leukemic cells is 0% (as I explained below) it means you are in "cytological remission" or complete cytological response which is a good thing: in that case the risk of progression of the disease is almost null. In other words your CML is totally controlled

Don't hesitate if you have any questions

#3 Trey


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Posted 02 February 2012 - 09:54 AM

The BMB will look for several things, some which can only be seen by this test:

1) Cytogenetics review: will look at 20 dividing WBCs under a microscope to look at the chromosomes; will count the number of leukemic cells and determine percentage, and also look for any secondary genetic mutations

2) Marrow "quality": Is the marrow returning to a more normal state, i.e., cell sizes, shapes, and counts, any fibrosis decreasing, and other quality issues.  Note that often at 6 months the cell counts can be below normal in the marrow

3) Will normally use the marrow aspirate to do a FISH and/or PCR

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