Is leukapheresis effective in patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML)?

The Bottom Line: AML patients with hyperleukocytosis receiving leukapheresis had a significantly lower risk for early death by Day 21 than patients treated without leukapheresis.

Reference: Bug G, Anargyrou K, Tonn T, Bialleck H, Seifried E, Hoelzer D, Ottmann OG. Impact of leukapheresis on early death rate in adult acute myeloid leukemia presenting with hyperleukocytosis.  Transfusion. 2007 Oct;47(10):1843-50. 


There were no procedure-related adverse events. By Day 21 of therapy, 13 of 53 patients had died, resulting in an overall early death rate of 25 percent. In a multivariate logistic regression model, patients in Cohort B had a significantly lower risk of early death than patients in Cohort A (16% vs. 32%, respectively). With a median follow-up of 24.2 months, the overall survival was similar in both cohorts (Cohort A, 7.5; Cohort B, 6.5 months). Thus, leukapheresis had no impact on patients’ long-term survivals.

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