Polycythemia vera laboratory tests

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Editor-In-Chief: C. Michael Gibson, M.S., M.D. [1] Associate Editor(s)-in-Chief: Mohamad Alkateb, MBBCh [2]; Shyam Patel [3] Ifeoma Odukwe, M.D. [4]

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Laboratory findings associated with the diagnosis of polycythemia vera include erythrocytosis, leukocytosis, and thrombocytosis. The most sensitive test for polycythemia vera is JAK2 V617F mutation testing in the peripheral blood. A specific finding in patients with polycythemia vera is low erythropoietin level.

Laboratory Findings

Laboratory findings associated with polycythemia vera include:[1][2][3][4][5][6]

  • The following blood levels may be elevated in blood chemistry (non specific):
  • Peripheral blood mutational testing
  • JAK2 V617F mutation or JAK2 exon 12 mutation
  • Bleeding and clotting factor
  • It is usually low in polycythemia vera but can be normal in about 20% of patients.
  • It is usually high in secondary polycythemia vera.


  1. Mazzotta S, Guerranti R, Gozzetti A, Bucalossi A, Bocchia M, Sammassimo S; et al. (2006). "Increased serum lactate dehydrogenase isoenzymes in Ph-negative chronic myeloproliferative diseases: a metabolic adaptation?". Hematology. 11 (4): 239–44. doi:10.1080/10245330600774835. PMID 17178662.
  2. Denman M, Szur L, Ansell BM (1966). "Hyperuricaemia in polycythaemia vera". Ann Rheum Dis. 25 (4): 340–4. PMC 2453349. PMID 5947579.
  3. Murakami J, Shimizu Y (2013). "Hepatic manifestations in hematological disorders". Int J Hepatol. 2013: 484903. doi:10.1155/2013/484903. PMC 3626309. PMID 23606974.
  4. Remacha AF, Montserrat I, Santamaria A, Oliver A, Barceló MJ, Parellada M (1997). "Serum erythropoietin in the diagnosis of polycythemia vera. A follow-up study". Haematologica. 82 (4): 406–10. PMID 9299851.
  5. Stein BL, Oh ST, Berenzon D, Hobbs GS, Kremyanskaya M, Rampal RK, Abboud CN, Adler K, Heaney ML, Jabbour EJ, Komrokji RS, Moliterno AR, Ritchie EK, Rice L, Mascarenhas J, Hoffman R (November 2015). "Polycythemia Vera: An Appraisal of the Biology and Management 10 Years After the Discovery of JAK2 V617F". J. Clin. Oncol. 33 (33): 3953–60. doi:10.1200/JCO.2015.61.6474. PMC 4979103. PMID 26324368.
  6. Arber DA, Orazi A, Hasserjian R, Thiele J, Borowitz MJ, Le Beau MM; et al. (2016). "The 2016 revision to the World Health Organization classification of myeloid neoplasms and acute leukemia". Blood. 127 (20): 2391–405. doi:10.1182/blood-2016-03-643544. PMID 27069254.


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