Staging hairy cell leukaemia

There is no widely agreed staging system for hairy cell leukaemia.

The stage of a cancer means how far it has developed. Most types of cancer have a staging system. For example a number stage system from 1 to 4. But this is not really used for hairy cell leukaemia. 

Doctors use your test results to check how far your leukaemia has developed. This helps them decide on your treatment plan.

How do doctors plan treatment for hairy cell leukaemia?

Your doctor plans your treatment based on your symptoms, and your general health and fitness. 

To plan your treatment, doctors check if you have:

  • low red blood cell count (anaemia) 
  • low white blood cell count (neutropenia)
  • low platelet count (thrombocytopenia) 
  • an enlarged spleen 
  • swollen lymph nodes (lymphadenopathy)

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