Leukemia - Treatment Overview
myelogenous leukemia (CML) is treated right away. The most common choices include:
- Targeted therapy with a tyrosine kinase inhibitor. This is the first treatment used for CML.
- Stem cell transplant. Before the transplant can be done, chemotherapy or radiation is used to destroy the bone marrow activity.
For newly diagnosed people in the beginning stages of CML (chronic phase), a tyrosine kinase inhibitor may work for many years. If they don't have a relapse, they may never need to have a stem cell transplant. But if they have a relapse, they may need to have a stem cell transplant.
For people who are diagnosed with CML in the later stages (accelerated or blast crisis phase), treatment may involve having chemotherapy or a tyrosine kinase inhibitor before having a stem cell transplant. This can increase the chances of a successful transplant.
Additional information about leukemia is provided by the National Cancer Institute.
- For Adult Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia, see www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/pdq/treatment/adultALL/Patient.
- For Adult Acute Myeloid Leukemia, see www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/pdq/treatment/adultAML/Patient.
- For Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia, see www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/pdq/treatment/CLL/Patient.
- For Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia, see www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/pdq/treatment/CML/Patient.
- For Hairy Cell Leukemia, see www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/pdq/treatment/hairy-cell-leukemia/Patient.
Clinical trials play a very important
part in the treatment of leukemia. Clinical trials test the latest drugs and
other new treatments. They have made it possible for many people who have leukemia
to live longer. People who are in clinical trials get all the recommended
treatments for their cancer and are closely watched.
Talk to your doctor about
whether there is a clinical trial that might be good for you. For more
information, see www.cancer.gov/clinical_trials/ or http://clinicaltrials.gov.
Leukemia in children
Treatments for children who have leukemia aren't the same as treatments for adults who have leukemia. After the leukemia has been treated, children may need to be monitored for treatment side effects that may appear months or years later.