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NCPD Article

Polycythemia Vera: Symptom Burden, Oncology Nurse Considerations, and Patient Education

Jill Brennan-Cook
CJON 2020, 24(5), 575-578 DOI: 10.1188/20.CJON.575-578

Polycythemia vera (PV) is a rare progressive myelo-proliferative cancer with significant symptom burden. Patients with PV often experience symptoms that adversely affect quality of life, work productivity, and functional status. Oncology nurses are well suited to assess for symptom burden and to provide educational interventions that support patients and their families.


  • PV is characterized by elevated blood counts and symptom burden, which often influences quality of life.
  • Oncology nurses can assess patients with PV for symptom burden while monitoring for thrombotic and vascular events.
  • Oncology nurses can support patients with PV and their families by providing ongoing education.

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