Chronic myelogenous leukemia (CML) is a type of cancer that begins in the bone marrow, where all blood cells are formed, and causes the bone marrow to make too many white blood cells. The disease is called “chronic” because it is slow-growing, and “myelogenous” because it affects the myeloid cells, which develop into red blood cells, white blood cells, or platelets. Two additional terms for this disease are chronic myeloid leukemia and chronic granulocytic leukemia.
According to the American Cancer Society, roughly 9,000 people in the United States are diagnosed with CML each year, making it a rare type of cancer. It is most often diagnosed in individuals who are 65 years of age and above. It is also slightly more common in men than in women.
The amount of progress made in the field of CML research within the last several years is astounding, and the 5-year survival rate has improved by more than double since the 1990s. Scientific advances have led to better treatment options and longer life expectancies, giving CML patients and their loved ones many reasons to remain hopeful.
To learn more about chronic myelogenous leukemia, navigate to "What is CML?"