What is CLL?
Let’s talk about white blood cells. White blood cells are part of the body’s immune system. Lymphocytes are a type of white blood cell. These cells are made in the bone marrow as well as in the blood and lymph tissue. There are different types of lymphocytes that have specific roles; however, they all perform special tasks that help defend our bodies against bacteria, fungal or viral infections.
Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia (also called CLL) is a type of blood cancer that results from a change to the DNA (genetic material) of a cell that was meant to be a lymphocyte. The abnormal (leukemic) cell multiples into many CLL cells. These cells do not function normally and can prevent normal blood cell production. As a result, the number of healthy blood cells (red cells, white cells and platelets) is usually lower than normal.
For most people, CLL is diagnosed before symptoms occur. Most of the time, CLL is found in routine blood work, test, or physical exam for another health issue. Once symptoms arise, they can include:
- Frequent and repeated infections
- Anemia, otherwise known as the deficiency of red blood cells in the blood
- Lymph node swelling that interferes with the normal organ function in the digestive or urinary systems.
- Night sweats
- Weight loss (unexplained)
- Abdominal fullness
The first step to managing the symptoms of CLL is to understand exactly what’s going on in your body. Next, you’ll want to dig deeper into your specific stage. Unlike other types of cancer, the stage of chronic lymphocytic leukemia is not based on whether or not the disease has spread. Instead, the stage is based on how it may be affecting you.
Remember, treatment plans may differ from person to person based on unique features of your cancer. Long story short, we have partnered with Pack Health, and they’ve opened up a special opportunity for our Community. They have a team of Health Advisors that want to help you manage your CLL diagnosis, and we were able to reserve 250 free spots for members with Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia (CLL).
You'll receive 3 months of free support, no credit card information required.