Hairy cell leukemia is a rare, slow-growing cancer of the blood in which your bone marrow makes too many B cells (lymphocytes), a type of white blood cell that fights infection. These excess B cells are abnormal and look "hairy" under a microscope.
Common symptoms of HCL includes persistently feeling tired, weakness, weight loss for no reason, shortness of breath, excessive sweating (most often at night), swollen lymph nodes, frequent infections and fevers, small red spots on the skin. The main treatment for hairy cell leukemia is chemotherapy, purine analog drugs either cladribine (2-CdA) or pentostatin, monoclonal antibody rituximab, surgery or interferon alpha.
Hairy cell leukemia is relatively uncommon and accounts for 2% of all leukemia cases, which is about 600-800 new patients diagnosed each year. We compare 5-year and 10-year relative survival rates of 371 849 patients diagnosed with HCL at various time intervals between 2003 and 2014 is 86-93 %