Myelofibrosis: Prognosis and Life Expectancy
The life expectancy of someone with myelofibrosis is very short. The average life span of someone with myelofibrosis is less than 10 years.
If you have been diagnosed with myelofibrosis, you are probably wondering how long your life will last after diagnosis? How can it be possible that I have such a short lifespan when other people live so much longer? What does it mean if I am living a few months longer or shorter than others? And why do some people live even longer lives than me?
The answer lies in the fact that there are many factors which affect the length of one’s life. These include genetics, age, disease stage, body type (muscle vs. fat), and lifestyle choices (smoking, alcohol use). Let us take each factor separately and see how they play into our longevity.
Genetics: Genetics plays a major role in determining the length of one’s life. A person with myelofibrosis has a 50% chance of having it. So, if you have myelofibrosis, then you have a 50% chance of dying before reaching the age of 80! The odds are not good for anyone! However, there is hope for those who survive their childhood cancer diagnoses.
For those that live to adulthood, the odds of survival increase by up to 15 years. So if you are an adult and are reading this now, then the future seems bright!
Age: Age is also a major factor in the length of one’s life. The older you get, the shorter your life span gets. For example, after age 60, your life expectancy begins to decrease after each passing year. This is a natural process of aging and cannot be avoided. The only way to prevent this from happening is to die young.
So if you are old and have myelofibrosis, then you have a longer life span! However, if you are young and have myelofibrosis, then you have a shorter life span due to the effects of aging!
Disease State: As mentioned above, the stage of your myelofibrosis affects your life span. If you have myelofibrosis in an earlier stage, then your life span increases. However, if you have myelofibrosis in a later stage, then your life span decreases. The later the stage at which you were diagnosed with myelofibrosis, the shorter your life span gets.
Body Type: Your body type also plays a role in the length of your life span. Certain diseases affect certain body types more than others. For example, people with myelofibrosis tend to have a skinny body type. Having this type of body makes your life span decrease by a few years. On the other hand, people with myelofibrosis also tend to have a muscular body type.
Having this type of body makes your life span increase by a few years.
Lifestyle Choices: Certain lifestyle choices can also affect your life span. For example, if you drink alcohol on a regular basis, then this will decrease your life span by around 5 years. If you smoke cigarettes on a regular basis, then this will decrease your life span by around 10 years. Quitting either of these habits can add extra years to your life!
So as you can see, there are many factors that can determine how long your life span is! The key is to try to do things that can increase your life span. These include quitting habits, eating healthy, and living a more active life.
When I first got diagnosed with myelofibrosis, I remember feeling overwhelmed at the many things that I had to learn about my disease. There are so many things that I had to learn about and keep track of! From learning about white blood cell counts to knowing if I have anemia, it can be difficult keeping all of these things straight at times. However, over time, I have gotten so much better at managing my disease that I barely even have to think about it anymore!
Have you gotten to the point yet where you are so good at managing your disease that you don’t have to think about it anymore?
It’s a great feeling when you get there because it feels like you have control over your disease instead of the other way around!
However, even the most knowledgable person can sometimes forget some of the important things about their disease. For this reason, it is a good idea to have a resource available to you that has all of this information directly at your fingertips. A resource like … a personalized health record!
A personalized health record is intended to be your go-to guide for important health information such as your medical history, any allergies you may have, and of course, your blood counts.
Sources & references used in this article:
Life expectancy of patients with chronic nonleukemic myeloproliferative disorders by C Rozman, E Feliu, M Giralt, D Rubio, MT Cortés – Cancer, 1991 – Wiley Online Library
Myelofibrosis in chronic granulocytic leukaemia: clinicopathologic correlations and prognostic significance by M Lazzarino, E Morra, A Castello… – British journal of …, 1986 – Wiley Online Library
Myelofibrosis in primary myelodysplasic syndromes: A retrospective study of 352 patients by H Maschek, A Georgii, V Kaloutsi… – European journal of …, 1992 – Wiley Online Library
Prognostic factors for thrombosis, myelofibrosis, and leukemia in essential thrombocythemia: a study of 605 patients by F Passamonti, E Rumi, L Arcaini, E Boveri… – …, 2008 – haematologica.org