UAE – Medical care giant Sheikh Shakhbout Medical City (SSMC) has launched its novel diagnostic testing method for detecting leukemia in the United Arab Emirates.

This highly specialized testing method will contribute to SSMC’s ongoing efforts of establishing a center of excellence in cancer care.

According to SSMC, the new test can help doctors make better decisions for patients with B-cell acute lymphocytic leukaemia (B-ALL).

SSMC’s B-ALL MRD Testing by Flow Cytometry is a unique test to detect post-treatment B-Cell lymphoblastic leukemia cancer cells,” the Abu Dhabi -based hospital said in a press release.

B-ALL is a type of blood and marrow cancer that occurs when an excess of abnormal B-lymphocytes, a type of white blood cells that support the body in fighting infection, are produced.

When abnormal B-lymphocytes build up in the blood and bone marrow, they impact healthy blood cells, making it harder for the body’s immune system to fight infections.

SSMC’s diagnostic test for human leukemia is designed to support physicians in improving the prognosis and monitoring of patients living with the malignant disease.

The B-ALL MRD Testing by Flow Cytometry helps detect minimal residual disease (MRD), which is the name given to leukemic cells that remain in the body during treatment and are a major cause of relapse,” stated SSMC.

Sheikh Shakhbout Medical City further outlined that B-cell acute lymphocytic leukaemia progresses rapidly and requires highly specialized testing to be optimally managed.

Dr. Eiman Al Zaabi, consultant in hematopathology and chairperson of the Pathology and Laboratory Medicine Department at SSMC, emphasized the novel testing method will help to improve health outcomes and patient experiences.

Having the B-ALL MRD testing by flow cytometry available at SSMC enables us to identify MRD levels and gives our team of multidisciplinary specialists detailed information to improve the prognosis and monitoring of the disease,” noted Dr. Eiman Al Zaabi.

On the clinical significance of introducing the B-ALL MRD testing, physicians can identify patients who are at a higher risk of relapse allowing for earlier intervention by their dedicated medical team, and specific patients who qualify for stem cell transplants.

Diagnostics lab test results will guide us in amending the management of the disease and pinpointing the right level of care needed to yield the best possible therapeutic benefits for patients,” she noted.

Dr. Al Zaabi further said that based on the test results, further therapies can be adapted to achieve long-term complete remission and contribute to reducing the harmful effects of chemotherapy.

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