Hairy cell leukemia is a very rare kind of adult leukemia. This condition is very difficult to diagnose as there are very few or no symptoms at all. This condition is mostly found in the age group above 50 and is more common in men.
In this condition, the bone marrow makes too many lymphocytes in the blood. Since this leukemia grows slowly and in some cases does not grow at all, the symptoms also do not change. The person suffering from hairy cell leukemia may have a feeling of tiredness all the time and may be having pain under the ribs, and could also possibly have recurring infections, and fever. Apart from this, some patients may also complain of weight loss, weakness and fatigue. There could also be painless lumps found in the neck, groin, underarms and stomach. But since these symptoms may be associated with other conditions too, a prognosis of hairy cell leukemia becomes very difficult. Prognosis of hairy cell leukemia depends on factors such as the growth of the leukemia cells. There may be cases where the cells grow so slowly that they do not need any treatment. Also, a very important consideration in the prognosis of hairy cell leukemia is whether the condition responds to treatment or not. Based on the response, a prognosis is made.
In some cases, after a long remission, the leukemia returns and after retreatment also one cannot rule out another remission. Hence, the doctors truly call this as a cancer which never really goes. In some cases, the patients really do not have too much problem for years along with treatment.
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