Leukemia Treatment

Chemotherapy, biological therapy, high-dose chemotherapy with stem cell transplant, and surgery are a few of the treatment options for leukemia. People with acute leukemia often require treatment right away, while those with chronic leukemia who are not experiencing any symptoms may not need treatment immediately. Eating well during and after treatment is an important part of recovery, as is adhering to a follow-up care program.

An Overview of Treating Leukemia

Leukemia treatment options vary based on the type of leukemia that a person has. Factors that may influence the treatment options include:
  • The type of leukemia (see Types of Leukemia)
  • The patient's age
  • Whether leukemia cells are present in the cerebrospinal fluid
  • Whether the leukemia has been treated before
  • Certain features of the leukemia cells
  • The patient's symptoms and general health.
In general, leukemia treatment options can include:
  • Chemotherapy
  • Other drug therapy
  • Biological therapy
  • High-dose chemotherapy with stem cell transplant
  • Donor lymphocyte infusion
  • Surgery.
Choosing the most appropriate treatment is a decision that ideally involves the patient, the family, and the healthcare team.
This article will look at the treatment options that apply to all types of leukemia. For more specific information about the treatments for different types of leukemia, visit the following eMedTV articles:
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Treatments for Leukemia

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