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Chronic Myelogenous Leukaemia

Chronic myelogenous leukaemia, abbreviated CML and also known as chronic granulocytic leukaemia (CGL), is a type of leukaemia when myeloid cells located in the soft tissue inside the bone start growing abnormally and accumulating in the blood. CML is thought to be closely related to a mutated chromosome condition called the Philadelphia chromosome.

Chronic myelogenous leukaemia is categorised into three distinctive phases. The chronic phase lasts months to years and displays very few or no symptoms. CML is usually diagnosed during this stage through a regular blood check. During the accelerated phase, cells start multiplying more rapidly, causing fever, swelling in the spleen and pain in the bones. The third and most severe phase, blastic crisis, is reached if the condition is not treated. This phase may include tiredness, weight loss, bleeding, infection, overall weakness, sweating, fever and red rashes on the skin.

Most of the suspected causes for developing CML are still guesswork. The reasons for occurrence of the Philadelphia gene are still unknown, but there may be a link between CML and severe exposure to radiation, such as atom bomb explosion as well as treatment by intensive radiotherapy for other cancers.

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