hairy cell leukaemia


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A low-grade B-cell leukaemia comprising 2% of adult leukaemia, commonly affecting men—male:female ratio, 4:1—age 50-55, leading to progressive pancytopenia; 10% have platelet counts of < 20 x 109/L—US: < 20,000/mm3—20% have thrombocytosis; 1-80% of nucleated RBCs are hairy.
The ‘classic’ or Japanese form—which comprises most cases of HCL—responds better to therapy than the non-classic or variant form
Lab Increased acid phosphatase, especially isoenzyme 5—increased in bone metastases and in Gaucher’s disease
Management First-line therapy: purine analogues 2’-deoxycoformycin (pentostatin) and 2-chlorodeoxyadenosine (cladribine)
Cause of death Infections, gram-negative bacteria, atypical mycobacteria, fungi

hairy cell leukaemia

A rare disease featuring overgrowth of B .LYMPHOCYTES usually in men between 40 and 60 years of age. The lymphocytes show prominent hair-like projections. There is a profound drop in the numbers of all blood cells and the spleen, which is the site of the bulk of the abnormal lymphocytes, is enlarged. Treatment is by spleen removal (splenectomy) and the use of drugs such as alpha-INTERFERON and deoxycoformycin.
References in periodicals archive ?
Claire, of Gosforth, Newcastle, said: "It came as quite a shock to be told that I had hairy cell leukaemia as I'd never heard of the condition before.
Each year up to 200 people in Britain are diagnosed with hairy cell leukaemia, accounting for two per cent of all leukaemia diagnosis.
Hairy cell leukaemia is a long-term illness that develops slowly.
Hairy cell leukaemia and occupational exposure to benzene.
Occupational exposure to solvents and hairy cell leukaemia.
Around 21,500 people get leukaemia in the UK every year but fewer than 100 get the hairy cell leukaemia which attacked his body.