Get answers to your Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia questions.
CLL; Leukemia - chronic lymphocytic (CLL)
No treatment is usually give for early stage CLL. However, the patient must be closely monitored by their health care provider.
If chromosome testing suggests that you have a high-risk type of CLL, treatment may be started earlier.
Treatment may also be started if:
Several chemotherapy drugs are commonly used to treat CLL.
Rarely, radiation may be used for painfully enlarged lymph nodes. Blood transfusions or platelet transfusions may be required if blood counts are low.
Bone marrow or stem cell transplantation may be used in younger patients with advanced or high-risk CLL. A transplant is the only therapy that offers a potential cure for CLL.
How well a patient does depends on the stage of the cancer. About half of patients diagnosed in the early stages of the disease live more than 12 years.
Call health care provider if you develop enlarged lymph nodes or unexplained fatigue, bruising, excessive sweating, or weight loss.
Kantarjian H, O'Brien S. The chronic leukemias. In: Goldman L, Ausiello D, eds. Cecil Textbook of Medicine. 23rd ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Saunders Elsevier; 2007: chap 195.
Grever M, Andritsos LA, Lozanski G. Chronic lymphoid leukemia. In: Abeloff MD, Armitage JO, Niederhuber JE, Kastan MB, McKenna WG, eds. Abeloff’s Clinical Oncology. 4th ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Elsevier Churchill Livingstone; 2008:chap 108.
National Comprehensive Cancer Network. National Comprehensive Cancer Network Clinical Practice Guidelines in Oncology: Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphomas. 2011. Version 1.2011.
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