Screening for chronic myeloid leukaemia (CML) | Cancer Research UK
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Screening for chronic myeloid leukaemia (CML)

Men and women discussing Chronic myeloid leukaemia

This page explains why there is no screening programme for chronic myeloid leukaemia. There is information about

 

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Screening for chronic myeloid leukaemia (CML)

Before screening for any type of cancer can be carried out, doctors must have an accurate test to use. The test must be reliable in picking up cancers that are there. And it must not give a positive result in people who do not have cancer. There is no reliable screening test for CML.

CML is a very uncommon condition. So if everyone was tested for it many people would have unnecessary tests. It would probably be most cost effective to screen people who are thought to be at higher risk of developing CML. But first we must be sure we know who is definitely at higher risk. We don’t know of any high risk groups for CML that we can easily identify.

 

CR PDF Icon You can view and print the quick guides for all the pages in the About CML section.

 

 

What screening is

Screening means testing people for the early stages of a disease, before they show any signs of having it. The aim of screening is to diagnose cancer

  • At an early stage
  • Before symptoms start
  • When it is easier to treat
  • When it is more likely to be curable
 

What we need to know before we can screen for cancer

Before screening for any type of cancer can be carried out, doctors must have an accurate test to use. The test must be reliable in picking up cancers that are there. And it must not give a positive result in people who do not have cancer.

 

Why there is no screening for CML

There is no screening programme for chronic myeloid leukaemia. If screening were to be introduced, the test would have to be simple, quick and not too expensive. Chronic myeloid leukaemia is an uncommon condition and testing everyone would mean that many people would have unnecessary tests. It would probably be most cost effective to screen people at higher risk of CML. But first we must be sure we know who is definitely at higher risk. Currently, we don't know of any high risk groups for chronic myeloid leukaemia that we can easily identify.

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Updated: 4 November 2014