Leukemia - When To Call a Doctor
Call your doctor to schedule an
appointment if you have any symptoms, such as:
- A new lump or swollen gland in your neck, under your arm, or in
- Frequent nosebleeds, bleeding from the gums or rectum, more
frequent bruising, or very heavy menstrual bleeding.
- Frequent fevers.
- Night sweats.
- Bone pain.
- Unexplained appetite loss or recent weight loss.
- Feeling tired a lot without a known reason.
- Swelling and pain on the left side of the belly.
Watchful waiting is a period when your
doctor is checking you regularly but not treating you. It may be a treatment choice if you are an older
adult, depending on the stage of the leukemia and your overall health.
Doctors may use watchful waiting for patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) at first because treatment may not be needed. For example, it is estimated
that 1 out of 3 people who have CLL never need treatment.5
People who have CLL often live for a long time without
Watchful waiting isn't usually recommended for other types of
During watchful waiting, you will:
- Have regular appointments with your doctor.
- Have regular medical tests, including scans and blood
- Be told which symptoms to report to your doctor
Who to see
Health professionals who can evaluate symptoms of
leukemia include the following:
The diagnosis of leukemia will be done by a
medical oncologist, pediatric oncologist, or
hematologist. These specialists
also treat leukemia.
To prepare for your appointment, see the topic Making the Most of Your Appointment.