Overview

For patients with CML (chronic myeloid leukaemia), getting the best treatment first can increase chances of disease free survival and improve quality of life. Glivec (imatinib) is approved for first-line treatment of CML, and is the most prescribed medicine for the condition. Response rates are highest when used early in the course of the disease.

Before Glivec

A devastating disease with a poor prognosis for many patients, until recently CML has had few treatment options and, for the most part, these have succeeded only in delaying disease progression by up to a few years.
Radiation, the first treatment for CML, was introduced in the 1920s with limited results. Chemotherapeutic agents followed in the 1950s and 1960s and increased the survival rate among patients with CML to about 5 years. Bone marrow transplantation arrived in the 1970s, and interferon-alpha (IFN-α ) appeared in the 1980s. Of all these treatments, only bone marrow transplantation currently provides a "cure" for CML in terms of long-term remission of cancerous cell growth. The fact remains, however, that less than 20% of the CML patient population qualifies for transplant, a costly procedure accompanied by significant health risks. What’s more, few patients actually have a potential donor for transplant.
 

Targeting CML With Glivec

In this section of the site, you will get the information you need to make a diagnosis of CML, and explore the benefits of prescribing Glivec as a first-line treatment.
First, find out About CML epidemiology, aetiology, and clinical and natural history.