Risk Factors


Acute myelogenous leukemia

Cigarette smoking

Chronic lymphocytic leukemia

Age: more prevalent in middle age and older patients

Polycythemia Vera

None known


None known; triggered by a disturbance of the immune system

Myelodysplastic Syndromes

  • Aplastic anemia: 35-60% will develop MDS
  • Ionizing radiation: x-rays and gamma rays, atomic radiation; therapeutic radiation
  • Exposure to benzene, certain alkylating agents in chemotherapy regimens, and a few other chemicals and drugs
  • Certain chromosomal abnormalities
  • Down syndrome
  • Fanconi anemia
  • Neurofibromatosis (Von Recklinghausen disease)

Waldenstrom Macroglobulinemia

None known

Essential Thrombocythemia

None known