What are the types of AML?
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World Health Organisation (WHO) classification
The WHO classification system divides AML into several broad groups by the type of abnormal myeloid cell and if:
- There are genetic changes in the cells.
- The leukemia developed from a blood disorder.
- The leukemia developed after chemotherapy and radiotherapy.
- More than one type of blood cell has abnormal changes.
AML risk groups
- Low risk: Your leukemia is likely to be cured and there’s less chance of the cancer coming back (relapse). Low-risk patients won’t usually need a stem cell transplant, unless they do relapse.
- Intermediate risk: It is hard to predict how you will respond to treatment. You may or may not need a stem cell transplant.
- High risk: There’s a high risk of the leukemia coming back (relapse) so you will have very intensive treatment. You are likely to have a stem cell transplant if you are suitable for one.
Acute promyelocytic leukemia (APL)
Acute promyelocytic leukemia (APL) is a sub-type of AML. APL is treated differently to other forms of AML, as it responds well to certain non-chemotherapy drugs, for example, all-trans retinoic acid (ATRA). APL is usually treated with a combination of drugs, which may include chemotherapy drugs.
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