Leukemia - Prognosis

The prognosis for various forms of leukemia varies widely. Three important factors are the patient's age and general health, and the time since diagnosis. That is, younger patients who are otherwise in good health have the best chance for survival if their leukemia is diagnosed early.

Prognosis also varies depending on the form of leukemia. In general, patients with chronic forms of the disease tend to live longer than those with acute forms. The average survival rate for patients with chronic leukemia is about nine years. By contrast, only about half of all patients with acute myelogenous leukemia survive five years. For acute lymphocytic leukemia, the survival rate is even less.

Medical progress has greatly improved the prognosis for leukemia over the past thirty years. Surgeons are becoming much more proficient at bone marrow transplantations. As a result, more and more patients face the possibility not only of remission but also a cure.

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