Leukemia Home > Symptoms of Chronic Leukemia

Common symptoms of chronic leukemia may include feeling very tired, weight loss for no known reason, and fever. The symptoms experienced by people with chronic leukemia may vary depending on which type of the cancer they have. For instance, symptoms of chronic myelogenous leukemia (CML) may include night sweats. Symptoms of chronic leukemia seen with chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) include such things as infection and painless swelling of the lymph nodes in the neck, underarm, stomach, or groin.

Symptoms of Chronic Leukemia: An Introduction

Like all blood cells, leukemia cells travel through the body. Depending on the number of abnormal cells and where these cells collect, people with chronic leukemia may have a number of symptoms. Symptoms of chronic leukemia will vary somewhat depending on the type of chronic leukemia. The two types of chronic leukemia are chronic myelogenous leukemia (CML) and chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL).
 

Symptoms of Chronic Leukemia: CML

In the early stages of CML, the leukemia cells function almost normally, and CML symptoms may not appear for a long time. Doctors will usually find CML during a routine checkup, before there are any symptoms. When CML symptoms do appear, they are generally mild at first and progress gradually. Common symptoms of CML may include:
 
  • Feeling very tired
  • Weight loss for no known reason
  • Night sweats
  • Fever
  • Pain or a feeling of fullness below the ribs on the left side.
 

Symptoms of Chronic Leukemia: CLL

Like CML, in the early stages of CLL, the leukemia cells function almost normally; CLL symptoms may not appear for a long time. A healthcare provider will usually find CLL during a routine checkup, before there are any symptoms of chronic leukemia. When CLL symptoms do appear, they are generally mild and progress gradually. Common symptoms of CLL may include:
 
  • Painless swelling of the lymph nodes in the neck, underarm, stomach, or groin
  • Feeling very tired
  • Pain or fullness below the ribs
  • Fever and infection
  • Weight loss for no known reason.
 
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Arthur Schoenstadt, MD
Last updated/reviewed:
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