We all know that Leukemia is a scary, devastating diagnosis. Are we making any progress in the fight against this disease? Here are the facts for the four most common types of Leukemia:
In 1975, the survival rate Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia was 41 %, now the survival rate is up to 90% at 5 years.
In 1975, the survival rate for Acute Myeloid Leukemia was less than 20%, now the 5 year survival is up to 50%.
In 1975, the survival rate for Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia was less than 50%, now the 5 year survival rate is 82%.
In 1975, the survival rate for Chronic Myeloid Leukemia was only 6%. A new drug that became available in 2001 changed everything for this disease. Because of the new drug imatinib (Gleevec ™), 90% of patients with this disease are alive at 5 years!
Leukemia cells showing up on a blood smear under a microscope: