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.
The overall response rate was 91% in first-line therapy. Most patients with hairy cell leukemia can expect to live 10 years or longer after diagnosis and treatment. Aggressive surveillance and prevention efforts are generally warranted, although the lifetime odds of developing a second cancer after HCL diagnosis are still less than 50%.