How to Diagnose PV?

The first test to diagnose PV is a blood test. This is to check:

  • the number of red blood cells
  • the haematocrit level
  • the number of platelets

The haematocrit level is the amount of space the red blood cells take up in the blood. When there are more red blood cells they take up more space and so the haematocrit level is higher.

Around half of those with PV (50%) have an increase in the number of platelets. And some people may have an increased white cell count. If the first blood test suggests you have PV, you may have another blood test to look for a change in a gene called JAK2.

Other tests
Other tests you may have include:
a bone marrow test
chest x-ray
blood test to measure the level of a blood cell growth factor called EPO
ultrasound scan to check the size of your spleen
blood tests to check how well your liver and kidneys are working
a test to measure the oxygen level in your blood (pulse oximetry)

* The Content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.