Chronic lymphocytic leukemia is the most common leukemia in adults. It occurs when lymphocytes increase in uncontrolled and abnormal numbers in bone marrow, blood, and lymph nodes. Lymphocytes, which are one of the body's defensive cells, cannot perform their duties. The body remains vulnerable to infections. Leukemia cells that reach an abnormal number also prevent the production of normal cells, and symptoms of the disease appear. The average age of occurrence is between 67-72, and only 10% of the patients are under the age of 55. It is 2 times more common in men than in women.
Although the diagnosis is mostly made in the asymptomatic patient during routine tests, the patients mostly present to the physician with complaints of loss of appetite, weight loss, night sweats, weakness in daily activities, shortness of breath, susceptibility to infections, enlargement, and pain in the spleen, enlarged liver, enlarged lymph nodes, and anemia.
The first thing to be suspected in diagnosis is the presence of lymphocytosis in the hemogram. In addition, anemia and thrombocytopenia may be encountered. The increase in lymphocyte count in a peripheral smear is in favor of leukemia. RAI and BINET risk classification is used in CLL staging.
You can find staging details
The main target in CLL is to prevent disease progression and to reduce symptoms. Since CLL is not a curative disease, it starts at an advanced age and has a slow course, it has not been shown that the treatment performed in patients in the early stage and asymptomatic patients is beneficial.
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