Hi, momruns. .
BMB - bone marrow biopsy
CMP - complete metabolic panel (mainly to check liver function, since TKIs are hard on the liver) - done every 3 months
PCR - polymerase chain reaction (I think I spelled that wrong) - have every 3 months to check levels of BCR-Abl (the mutated chromosome) PCR is THE TEST for determining disease progression
FISH - flourescent in-situ-hybridization (probably spelled that wrong also) - test done at diagnosis and early on in the journey - not very useful after your PCR numbers have gotten nice and low
CBC - complete blood count
If you go to Trey's blog, it probably gives better information with great detail.
The most important test (in my opinion) is the PCR (some people call it the BCR-Abl) test. This is the one that you will be using to track how well you are doing. My doc just screwed mine up. Got a call from the lab this morning that they drew blood for the wrong test last week and so I had to go back in today for a redraw for PCR. This after the lab tech came running out to the parking lot last week after they drew blood, and I had to go back in so they could draw more. Sheesh!! I THINK that they actually drew the blood for the PCR on the first try, but then either miscommunication between doc and lab, or ordering wrong test from doc made for a screw up. So the sample had degraded by the time they sent it in, so they had to do it over today.
When they draw blood for PCR, look for them to put it in a vial with a lavendar top. You should only have blood drawn for PCR test early in the week and early in the day, because it degrades if the lab doesn't get it and process it in a timely manner. I always schedule my blood draws for Monday or Tuesday at 8:00 a.m.
And, as an aside. . .Trey. . .you were right. .the FISH test showed absolutely nothing, since my numbers are low (a good thing, of course). But one more strike against the current doc. Should have been doing FISH 2 years ago when it might have given good info, instead of now when it shows nothing.