Common Leukemias


Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia (CLL), Acute Lymphocytic Leukemia (ALL),Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia (CML), Acute Myelogenous Leukemia (AML)
To help understand the differences between the different types of common Leukemias, this table represents the defining characteristics including peak of incidence, findings from blood studies, and clinical manifestations specific to each leukemia.




Less specific characteristics

Disease Process

Acute Lymphocytic Leukemia (ALL)

Peaks age 2-9, then again in older adults

Bone, joint, abdominal pain, CNS symptoms, increased ICP, hepatosplenomegaly, lymphadenopathy, meningitis, transverse lines of rarefaction on epiphyses of  long bones

Fever, pallor, bleeding, anorexia, fatigue, weakness, weight loss

Proliferation of immature lymphocytes

Chronic myelogenous leukemia (CML)

Peaks around age 45, dx anywhere from 25-60

Increased sweating, splenomegaly with sternal tenderness, high platelet count early in the disease, increase in polymorphonuclear neutrophils, normal lymphocytes and monocytes, Philadelphia chromosome

Joint pain, bone pain, weakness, fever, fatigue

Excessive mature neoplastic granulocytes, Philadelphia chromosome

Chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL)

Between 50-70, rare before 30.

Richter’s syndrome, pain or paralysis from enlarge lymph nodes compression nerves, pulmonary symptoms, splenomegaly, night sweats, hepatomegaly, lymphadenopathy, hypogammaglobinemia, thrombocytopenia, frequent infections

Fatigue, weight loss, anorexia, fever

Production and accumulation of functionally inactive but long-lived, mature appearing lymphocytes

Acute Myelogenous Leukemia (AML)

Between 60-70 (peak)

Sternal tenderness with NO splenomegaly, gingival hyperplasia, high LDH, hypercellular bone dysplasia with myeloblasts

Fever, headache, anemia, fatigue, weakness, mouth sores, bleeding, infection.

Proliferation of myeloblasts