Diagnosing

Myelofibrosis (MF)


Diagnosing Myelofibrosis

If your doctor suspects that you have myelofibrosis, there are several tests that can lead to a diagnosis or rule out the disease. In the Hemato-Oncology Division at Sheba Medical Center, our skilled clinicians and pathologists use the latest technologies and techniques to evaluate all of your test results quickly and precisely.

The tests that we may use to diagnose MF include:

 

Blood Tests

Blood tests are generally the first step in diagnosing myelofibrosis. Blood will be taken from a vein and sent to a laboratory for analysis. A complete blood count (CBC) will be performed to assess the quantity of red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets. If you have MF, there will likely be an elevated number of white blood cells and platelets and a lower than normal number of red blood cells. Increased levels of uric acid, bilirubin, and lactic dehydrogenase may also indicate the presence of myelofibrosis.

 

Bone Marrow Tests

A bone marrow biopsy and aspiration will be performed, during which our doctor will remove a small sample of your bone marrow. These cells will be examined under a microscope, and the amounts and types of cells in this sample will help determine if you have MF. The atypical appearance of bone marrow precursors as well as scar tissue formation both suggest a diagnosis of MF.

 

Gene Mutation Analysis of Blood Cells

Blood or bone marrow samples will be analyzed for mutations, changes in the genes. Some specific mutations are typically associated with MF, which can be identified through gene mutation analysis.

 

Imaging Tests

An ultrasound, MRI, or x-rays may be performed. An ultrasound can determine if your spleen is enlarged, an MRI can inspect for changes in bone marrow that are typical of MF, and x-rays can display changes in bone density that are also linked to myelofibrosis.

 

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