Patient Comments: Leukemia - Symptoms


What were your leukemia symptoms and signs? Submit Your Comment

Comment from: Mkhhm, 19-24 Male (Patient) Published: August 09

My leukemia symptom were fatigue, fever, malaise, cervical lymph nodes enlargement, hyper gastric acid secretion and varicose veins.

Comment from: Kimberly , 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: June 26

I’m a 54 year old female that is in remission from APL (acute promyelocytic leukemia) and lately I have been so tired all I want to do is sleep, and my shoulders, ribs, back, my feet and legs hurt constantly. I’m worried my leukemia is back. I have had some sores in my mouth and some minor bruising. I am waiting for my blood results.

Comment from: Gary, 45-54 Male (Patient) Published: May 01

I was diagnosed with an elevated B-cell count 8 months ago. The specialist says it is too early to do anything for leukemia. I understand, but it feels like there's a sword over my head. I get tired and pant when going upstairs. My shoulders are always sore and my limbs ache constantly. My hips and knees hurt from time to time and I sometimes gasp in the night. I don't know if this is just getting older or something else. The symptoms I read about on this page sound so serious and I wonder if I'm being a hypochondriac. I guess I will talk to the general physician in a month's time when I have another blood test. Recently I learned that my poor brother has lymphoma.

Comment from: Trina, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: April 09

My symptom of leukemia was when the plasma cell multi myeloma blobs made contact with the whole sciatic nerve network causing a 10 on the pain meter. It happened suddenly and I knew this was more than sciatica. Morphine and other opioids didn’t work so I knew it was something else. Two months later I had spinal x-ray which showed a mass and later MRI and biopsy of the mass and then spinal biopsy, and started chemotherapy right away after mass steroid injections. No more pain, and I am half way through first chemotherapy session before resting for a while.

Comment from: Blessed, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: September 07

I was diagnosed at age 44 with chronic myeloid leukemia (CML). I felt perfectly normal and had only one symptom. A huge bruise appeared on my arm. This led to tests which confirmed CML. Treatment began with chemotherapy. Gleevec (imatinib) was approved by the FDA just a couple months after my diagnosis. I have taken this medication for 16 years and consider myself fortunate. The medication is extremely expensive and I would not be able to afford it without insurance. The last time I checked it retailed for about 16 to 17,000 per month.

Comment from: Candrol Cancer, 75 or over Male (Caregiver) Published: October 05

Leukemia is a type of blood cancer and the symptoms are body pain, nausea and vomiting, headache, sweating problem, especially, night sweats, tiredness, fatigue (doesn’t go away even after rest), and bleeding problems.

Comment from: KathyE, 65-74 Male (Caregiver) Published: December 13

I recently lost my 70 year old husband to acute myeloid leukemia (AML). It was only 24 days from diagnosis to his passing. He had neck pain, back pain and was tired a lot. His temperature went up to 103 and that is when we took him to the emergency room. He had a bad bacterial infection. It was treated and then he received chemotherapy. After the chemotherapy treatment a growth developed at the base of his cerebellum. He was too weak for any type of surgery so they treated it with antibiotics, hoping it was another bacterial infection. Unfortunately the tumor kept growing and we had to let him pass. Even if he had gotten rid of the growth, his prognosis wasn't good because of his age. Miss him so much but thankful he didn't have to suffer long.

Comment from: Steve, 25-34 Male (Caregiver) Published: June 23

My 30 year old fiance lost her yearlong battle with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) in March. Here were her symptoms, the ones that triggered her to get a blood test, in order as they came. Shoulder and neck pain, bumps on elbow, chronic fatigue, swollen painful gums, and bruising.

Comment from: Neenie, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: December 01

My leukemia signs were extreme fatigue, pain in my shoulders and very bad bruising. I was 52 when diagnosed and 53 when I had my bone marrow transplant. Now, at almost 55, I am pretty much back to normal except I still have fatigue.

Comment from: baylee 123, 13-18 Female (Caregiver) Published: November 30

In my family we have had a line of family members that have died of different cancers. I'm starting to worry that I might have leukemia because I have headaches constantly on a daily basis. I also have night sweats every night and getting so tired I have tried going to bed at 8 and waking up at 8. I am still so tired and during the day I would get a dull ache in my bones, or I would get a sharp stab in my joints. And I have a fuzzy pain in the back of my neck when looking down. My back is always sore; like always! I can’t bend over to pick something up and I am 12.I get really sick, like heaps of ear, chest, skin, and throat infections all the time. Also every day I feel like I am going to throw up. I am starting to get bruised quite easily. I am always feeling I have a cold and my glands are always swollen. I have had phlegm at the back of my throat for years now. And I have a very uncomfortable pain in my liver and my tummy looks like it is swollen. My gums have been bleeding too and I have been really weak. I tell my parents but they don't think much of it. I am wondering if I should tell them I should go to the doctors.


What is leukemia? See Answer
Comment from: stenfam, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: September 25

I was diagnosed with CML (chronic myelogenous leukemia) a year and a half ago. My only symptom was chronic fatigue. Since I had been treated for depression in the past (was off antidepressants and doing well for over a year at that point), I assumed it had returned and I made an appointment with primary care. In the meantime, I donated blood as I usually did every two months. It was two months from my prior donation at this time as well. Within a week of my donation I received a call requesting that I contact my doctor as soon as possible and request repeat blood work. I saw my doctor the next day. Based on those results, he told me he believed I had leukemia and sent me to oncology for confirmation. After a bone marrow biopsy, CML was confirmed. My only symptom had been chronic fatigue. With my past medical history, my doctor most likely would have prescribed an antidepressant and sent me on my way without a question from me, as I assumed that was the problem as well. In this case, donating blood saved my own life. With early detection, I still haven't had many of the symptoms described in this article. I never even felt sick until beginning treatment, but many side effects have subsided and I'm doing well. Please see your doctor if you aren't feeling well and suspect this may be the cause. Early detection really does make a difference when dealing with leukemia.

Comment from: cancerdude, 19-24 Male (Patient) Published: November 26

I am twenty and diagnosed with ALL (acute lymphocytic leukemia) and AML (acute myeloid leukemia). At first I started fainting frequently and I was diagnosed with syncope. My lymph nodes in my neck would get swollen once in a while and I had bad joint pain in my ankles. At one point I had an abscess. I didn't think anything of it so I just waited out the symptoms and they eventually disappeared. A few months later I went for a checkup and my doctor diagnosed me with anemia and wanted more tests done. Five rounds of chemotherapy later I am in remission and heading to transplant. All I can say is if you're diagnosed with leukemia, trust your doctors and keep your hope up and stay as active as possible.

Comment from: leanne, 75 or over Female (Caregiver) Published: January 29

My father has had chronic lymphocytic leukemia for the past 3 years and now I think he has got petechiae on both legs. We are on the watch and wait thing so no chemotherapy as yet.

Comment from: scorpioness, 19-24 Female (Patient) Published: March 20

I"ve been having night sweats the last few months. I’ve been getting very tired very easy and have constant headaches. The doctors tested my blood and discovered my WBC count is slightly high. I’m awaiting more tests to see if it’s a confirmation of leukemia.

Comment from: sue, 45-54 Male (Caregiver) Published: May 20

My brother died only three months ago. Over a couple of weeks, he felt unwell with a cold. He complained of feeling tired, woke up looking very pale, had high temperatures. Finally, he went to the hospital, but he never came home. The team worked on him and couldn’t understand why he wasn’t responding to treatment. After he died, tests came back that said he had a rare form of leukemia. He never knew he had it. He was a gentle giant, and I miss him so much.

Comment from: blackab, 19-24 Male (Caregiver) Published: May 01

My mom age 39 was diagnosed with acute leukemia two years ago. She was showing signs of being tired constantly, weight loss, lack of energy, loss of appetite, emotionally depressed, constant headaches, and became pale. She went through chemotherapy. Unfortunately, she was treated too late. The doctors did everything they could. I encourage people who think they have leukemia to see a doctor. My mom was diagnosed and in heaven within three months. I constantly wonder what could have been done for her to be in remission, but sometimes in life only God can control what happens. Everything happens for a reason and she is in a better place now. I would love to help those who are diagnosed with leukemia in any way that I can!

Comment from: pv, 65-74 Male (Caregiver) Published: April 14

My father was diagnosed with leukemia within a week of his 67th birthday. He had been having a pain in his left leg for 20 days before that. There were no other symptoms. The next day after his birthday, he started developing a fever. This went on for another four days. He experienced fatigue and weakness as well. When the fever wouldn’t subside, his doctor asked him to undergo a blood test. There were small red and purple spots on his thighs. He was immediately hospitalized. He passed away the next night, but I'm glad he passed away peacefully without much pain or suffering.

Comment from: benjy, 45-54 Male (Patient) Published: October 25

I am tired all the time until I am in pain. I have been to the doctor for blood tests but I have not been given a hip biopsy yet to find if I have leukemia.

Comment from: slguess, 65-74 Female (Caregiver) Published: June 17

My mother was diagnosed on September 30, 2015 with acute myeloid leukemia, and at 2:09 AM on October 3, 2015 she passed away. She had been in and out of the hospital several times along with going to her doctor regularly and seeing specialist (heart, kidney, and wound.) She never mentioned anything and it was a shock to her that she had leukemia. I can’t understand how so many medical professionals could miss this.


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Comment from: Katie40346, 19-24 Female (Patient) Published: March 26

I am wondering if I should get blood tests done. I have random bruising all over my body for no apparent reason and at first I thought I had hives but realize it"s petechia, I also have been consistently losing weight and have been cramping a lot in my foot and legs, and I"ve been tired. I thought this all could be a sign of anemia but it"s gotten progressively worse over the year.

Comment from: MyLadyofGenki, 13-18 Female (Caregiver) Published: May 20

My grandpa was just diagnosed with acute leukemia a couple of days ago. He experienced loss of appetite, leg and foot pain (mostly foot pain), throat pain, and fatigue. It came on little by little, we didn't even see it. We thought he was just tired like all people his age. But then, one night, he could hardly breath, he was practically choking, he couldn't hardly walk either. So we took him to the hospital. They took a bone marrow sample from his hip and did regular blood tests (he had diabetes). It took them nearly a week to diagnose him, but by then, he had already begun to die. He's still in the hospital as we speak. He's a very stubborn man, so he refuses to drink or eat anything. He's afraid to get up and go pee. He's making himself worse, every second he's dying a little bit more. But since he's dying anyway, the doctors said to let him do what he wants. So he ripped out his IV and they had to give him a blood transfusion. Every day he gets a new pack of blood. If you're in the hospital with this horrible, horrible cancer, you must drink, you must eat, and you have to sleep, no matter if people are visiting or not. We can't do anything about helping him get better, so you yourself must do everything you can to get better.

Comment from: bruiser, 13-18 Male (Patient) Published: April 13

I found a large lump under my arm while in the shower. Before I got the results of the biopsy, I had more lumps on my neck. I had ALL. The chemo was too hard on my body, so I had a bone marrow transplant. I am now perfectly normal.

Comment from: evelyn, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: March 25

The first signs I had of my leukemia were excessive bruising (very unusual: for example in my fingers, hands, arms, stomach, back and legs), a lot of red spots on my face, neck chest area and arms, and a very tiring weakness as if I couldn't get out of bed.

Comment from: Lucky, 65-74 Male (Patient) Published: February 18

In 2000, I reached a point where I couldn't walk across my yard without sitting down to get my breath. I was diagnosed with hairy cell leukemia. I had a transfusion every 10 days to replace my red cells. That was almost nine years ago. I'm keeping my fingers crossed, but so far, so good. It may sound silly, but a positive attitude was my key to winning.

Comment from: snb, 7-12 Female (Patient) Published: October 30

I was diagnosed this year with leukemia. I just turned 11 on October 10. My symptoms were swollen lymph notes little red dots on my legs and thighs and easy bruising. My mom thought I was bruising because I played base ball and was really clumsy. I was also tired and had an ear infection. It’s really hard but I know I’ll get through this.

Comment from: han, 19-24 Female (Caregiver) Published: October 24

I experience backache, bleeding gums, blood in the stool, blood in urine, difficulty of breathing and fever.

Published: July 16

I experienced tiredness, always wanting to sleep, no appetite, pale around the eyes and feeling very cold straight after having a bath and little lumps around neck.

Published: June 09

I have a friend who was recently diagnosed. She "lacks" the chromosome linked with Leukemia but, after sending her samples off to John Hopkins, they said that she has Leukemia even if she lacks the chromosome. How is this possible? She's started chemo and is already very sick from the treatment.

Comment from: lacey, 19-24 Female (Patient) Published: July 16

My symptoms when diagnosed with APL when I was 20 years old, which was in October there were red spots that looked like a rash, extreme nose bleeds, bruising in unusual places like my face and palms of hands, and got to the point where I could not even make it through a shower without having to sit down then go right back to bed and lastly no appetite. After 3 rounds of chemo, 12 weeks of arsenic trioxide treatments, and retinoic acid pills for a year I am in full remission.

Comment from: Jessy .A.N, Female (Caregiver) Published: May 26

Symptoms experienced is weakness of joint not able to stand without a support and constant low blood fever and pains that has even affected the teeth. Most time there is colour change in the skin that makes the patient look sickly.

Comment from: icequeen4011, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: May 01

I’m a 38 year old woman who had childhood acute leukemia in the early 80’s. I have three children and life is good. I thank god every day for the sick children hospital and how they now put you under for spinal taps. If there is any one who needs a friend while going though this please call on me. I’ll be your life line. It is hard, but hang in the god will watch over and the doctors and will try their best may God be with you and your family.

Comment from: leanne, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: May 01

I was pregnant with my son of 4 months I had really bad pain in my legs and I had bad pain in my chest and fainting, but put it down to pregnancy they picked it up in my bloods when I went for the pregnancy testing I had been sick and going to doctors for 3 months had bone bio and yes ALL. I then had radiotherapy and chemo went in remission had a healthy baby then had a transplant marrow from my sister this was 17 years ago. They say the hormones when pregnant could possibly change the blood, but you never know my son says he saved my life because if I wasn’t pregnant I might have known I had it. I still panic when I’m sick or have a blood check, but I have hair and I’m alive.

Comment from: Male (Caregiver) Published: January 22

My son was 11 when he was diagnosed. He was very active right up to being diagnosed. His main symptom was tiredness and headaches. He had a lot of bruising around his knees but it was wintertime and I didn't see it until he was hospitalized. I wish he would have shown me his legs earlier so that he would have been diagnosed earlier. He is still on chemo after 2 years and doing very well.

Comment from: HOUSEMOMMA3, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: October 15

I was diagnosed with all. I'm currently in remission my symptoms were I was always tired I wanted to sleep all day; I would eat a cup of yogurt and feel full for the rest of the day. I started having trouble walking to my car and being out of breath. I started looking pale and was getting sick a lot more. My menstrual periods were very, very heavy due to the lack of platelets.

Comment from: marizadp, 45-54 Female (Caregiver) Published: October 15

A male adult of 52 yrs of age has positive HIV, for more than 3 yrs. and today he was diagnosed with leukemia. What is the survival probability, or acute complications with both sicknesses? This man is my father and I want to know how I can help him.

Comment from: 3-6 Female (Caregiver) Published: September 17

I have a daughter 3 years old trying to find answers. Her absolute eosinophil is 889H which is very high. The symptom she has is real loose stool. I did find knots on her neck the doctor tells me it’s nothing to worry about. As well as not tell me her eosinophils count was high.

Comment from: Patricia, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: August 27

I was diagnosed in 2006 with leukemia. I went through nine chemotherapy sessions. First I experienced severe anemia. It’s a good lesson to follow the doctors once they told you to conduct blood counts. I also experienced vomiting and tiredness.