What is Polycythemia Vera?
Polycythemia vera is a myeloproliferative neoplasm characterized primarily by the increased production of red blood cells. Established treatment guidelines focus on maintaining hematocrit levels below 45 percent to reduce the risk of thrombotic events. Unfortunately, current treatment options are unable to continuously maintain hematocrit levels below the 45 percent target for many patients. In addition, current treatment options are intolerable to some patients and may be associated with serious side effects. For example, frequent phlebotomy treatment can significantly contribute to iron deficiency and associated symptoms. Hydroxyurea is a cytoreductive cancer treatment that affects blood cells such as white blood cells and platelets.