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Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia

Chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) is a disorder in which the lymphocytes lose their normal ability to die and end up accumulating over time. At first, the cells increase only in the blood, but over years they also increase in the lymph nodes, liver, spleen and bone marrow.

Some patients with CLL live decades and die of infection or other diseases common in older adults.

Our Approach to Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia

UCSF delivers the most advanced treatment options for chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) with care and compassion. Most patients with early-stage CLL do not need treatment. As the condition advances, we have a number of chemotherapy drugs that will put it into remission for several years. In select cases, where the potential benefits outweigh the risks, we offer stem cell transplantation using tissue-matched donors.

We are also dedicated to discovering better treatments for CLL through research. Interested patients may have the option to participate in clinical trials of potential new therapies.

Awards & recognition

  • usnews-neurology

    Among the top hospitals in the nation

  • Best in Northern California for cancer care (tie)

UCSF Health medical specialists have reviewed this information. It is for educational purposes only and is not intended to replace the advice of your doctor or other health care provider. We encourage you to discuss any questions or concerns you may have with your provider.