More than 5,300 people are diagnosed with rare forms of blood cancers and related conditions in the UK every year. These conditions cause normal blood cell production to breakdown and generally patients are left with insufficient healthy, functioning blood cells in their system.
The most common of these conditions are the myeloproliferative neoplasms (MPN), a group of blood disorders, related to leukaemia, that affect around 3,300 people in the UK every year.
When people have MPN, blood cell production becomes over-active causing the blood to become thick.
The myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS) are another group of blood disorders that affect around 2,000 people in the UK. Usually people with MDS make far too many blood cells, but these are mostly defective and not able to do their jobs properly. In fact most of these cells are destroyed before even entering the blood stream meaning that people with MDS have far too few cells in their blood.
Aplastic anaemia is another rare blood disorder that results in not enough blood cells being produced. However, unlike MDS and MPN, this disorder does not result in the production of cancerous or abnormal blood cells, rather a lack of healthy blood cells.
Daisy Turner was diagnosed with a type of myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) at the young age of 16. Now 22 years old, Daisy is in remission and optimistic about her future.
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Anyone can get a blood cancer at any age. Around 30,000 people, from babies to grandparents, are diagnosed with blood cancer every year in the UK.