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What is lymphoma leukemia?

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Quick Answer

Acute lymphocytic leukemia is a cancer that forms from immature white blood cells, also known as lymphocytes, states the American Cancer Society. These abnormal lymphocytes form in the bone marrow and quickly spread to the blood and lymph nodes.

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Full Answer

There are four primary types of lymphoma: chronic lymphocytic leukemia, chronic myeloid leukemia, acute myeloid leukemia and acute lymphoblastic leukemia, according to Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. The name of each type of lymphoma describes where the disease begins, whether in immature or mature blood cells.

Chronic lymphocytic leukemia is the most common form of leukemia diagnosed. It can be slow growing, and treatment often includes watchful waiting, states Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. Acute lymphoblastic leukemia is the most common form of leukemia diagnosed in young children. This type of cancer affects the immune system and all blood cells, and treatments are based on what subtype of the disease is present.

Treatment for lymphoma is based on the patient's age, whether the disease is lymphocytic or myelocytic, and whether cancer cells are found within the spinal fluid, explains MedicineNet.com. Patients diagnosed with acute leukemia are generally treated immediately, with the goal of cure or remission. Patients diagnosed with forms of chronic leukemia, however, generally are not cured through chemotherapy treatments. Maintenance therapies can help keep the disease in check, and stem cell transplants can provide a cure in some patients.

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