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Serious Medicine. Extraordinary Care.

What Happens During Watchful Waiting for CLL

Your doctor will monitor your disease to see if it gets worse or if you begin to develop symptoms that require treatment. Your doctor will watch for recurring infections and rapid swelling in certain organs, such as your lymph nodes, liver, or spleen. These changes may mean that the disease is getting worse or progressing. You will need to have your blood drawn on a regular basis to check your blood cell counts. Your doctor may do this every few weeks to every few months.

Chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) usually progresses much more slowly than acute types of leukemia, so you can potentially live with the disease for quite a while without any problems.

Watch for these symptoms:

  • Fever

  • Chills

  • Night sweats

  • Unexplained weight loss

  • Increased fatigue

  • Enlarged lymph nodes

If you start having symptoms or if your doctor sees signs that the disease is progressing, you will undergo a treatment or series of treatments. The type of treatment you have depends upon the stage of your CLL.