Symptoms and Staging for ALL
Signs and Symptoms
- Weakness or fatigue.
- Fever or night sweats.
- Bruises or bleeds easily (i.e., bleeding gums, purplish patches in the skin, or petechiae [flat, pinpoint spots under the skin]).
- Shortness of breath.
- Unexpected weight loss or anorexia.
- Pain in the bones or joints.
- Swollen lymph nodes, particularly lymph nodes in the neck, armpit, or groin, which are usually painless.
- Swelling or discomfort in the abdomen.
- Frequent infections.
There is no clear-cut staging system for this disease. This disease is classified as untreated, in remission, or recurrent.
Untreated Adult ALL
For a newly diagnosed patient with no prior treatment, untreated adult acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) is defined by the following:
- Abnormal white blood cell count and differential.
- Abnormal hematocrit/hemoglobin and platelet counts.
- Abnormal bone marrow with more than 5% blasts.
- Signs and symptoms of the disease.
Adult ALL in Remission
A patient who has received remission-induction treatment of ALL is in remission if all of the following criteria are met:
- Bone marrow is normocellular with no more than 5% blasts.
- There are no signs or symptoms of the disease.
- There are no signs or symptoms of central nervous system leukemia or other extramedullary infiltration.
All of the following laboratory values are within normal limits:
- White blood cell count and differential.
- Hematocrit/hemoglobin level.
- Platelet count.
Adapted from the National Cancer Institute’s Physician Data Query (PDQ(r)) Cancer Information Summaries (http://www.cancer.gov/
For more information:
Go to the Adult Leukemia health topic.