What Causes Night Sweats and Itching in MPNs?

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In this “Ask the Expert” segment featuring Dr. Naval Daver from MD Anderson Cancer Center, Barbara wrote in to Patient Power asking, “What causes the night sweats and itching in MPN patients and is there anything I can do to help stop these symptoms?” Dr. Daver explains how certain symptoms, such as night sweats, itching and splenomegaly, are related to cytokines that are released as part of the MPN process. He provides treatment advice and encourages patients to bring these symptoms to the attention of their physician.

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Transcript

Please remember the opinions expressed on Patient Power are not necessarily the views of our sponsors, contributors, partners or Patient Power. Our discussions are not a substitute for seeking medical advice or care from your own doctor. That’s how you’ll get care that’s most appropriate for you. 

Andrew Schorr:

Barbara wrote in and wants to know, “What causes the night sweats and itching in MPN patients, and is there anything I can do to help stop these symptoms?”

Dr. Daver:

So the night sweats and itching are usually thought of cytokines that are released in the MPN process. Usually it is a part and process of the disease, so there’s really not any great treatment that specifically reduces these. Oftentimes if it’s MPN and the patient has these symptoms, these may be one of the indicators that require them to go on treatment with JAK inhibitors or other clinical trial medications. And often we see the patients who are having night sweats and other symptoms such as splenomegaly, early satiety, abdominal distension, when they respond to the JAK inhibitors do tend to have an improvement in all of the symptoms universally and not just one. 

So I think the most important thing is in the symptoms is to bring them to the attention of your hematologist especially if you have a known MPN or p. vera (polycythemia vera) and then to seek appropriate treatment for the underlying disease rather than specifically for the night sweats.

Please remember the opinions expressed on Patient Power are not necessarily the views of our sponsors, contributors, partners or Patient Power. Our discussions are not a substitute for seeking medical advice or care from your own doctor. That’s how you’ll get care that’s most appropriate for you. 

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Page last updated on May 13, 2015