You can take steps to keep your body healthy if you've been diagnosed with chronic lymphocytic leukemia. Try to:
April 26, 2013
- Do what you can to avoid infections. People with chronic lymphocytic leukemia are prone to frequent infections. Take steps to keep yourself healthy. Eat a healthy diet with plenty of fruits and vegetables. Get enough sleep so that you wake feeling rested. Exercise most days of the week. Do your best to avoid people who are sick. Wash your hands frequently and thoroughly to help keep germs away. Keep up to date on your immunizations, including an annual flu shot.
- Reduce your risk of second cancers. People with chronic lymphocytic leukemia have a risk of second cancers. Lifestyle changes may help reduce your risk, such as not smoking, and drinking alcohol in moderation, eating a healthy plant-based diet and using sunscreen when you're outside.
- Go to all of your appointments. Frequent blood tests to see if your cancer has progressed can wear on you. Each time you go for your test, you may worry that your cancer is worsening. Don't let this stop you from going to your appointments. Instead, expect that you'll have some concern and plan for it. Find relaxing activities while waiting for test results. For instance, exercise, read, or spend time with friends and family.
- Lichtman MA, et al. Williams Hematology. 8th ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies; 2010. http://www.accessmedicine.com/resourceTOC.aspx?resourceID=69. Accessed March 7, 2013.
- Abeloff MD, et al. Abeloff's Clinical Oncology. 4th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Churchill Livingstone Elsevier; 2008. http://www.mdconsult.com/das/book/body/208746819-4/0/1709/0.html. Accessed March 7, 2013.
- Chronic lymphocytic leukemia. The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. http://www.lls.org/#/resourcecenter/freeeducationmaterials/leukemia/cll. Accessed March 7, 2013.
- Chronic lymphocytic leukemia treatment (PDQ). National Cancer Institute. http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/pdq/treatment/CLL/patient. Accessed March 7, 2013.
- When cancer doesn't go away. American Cancer Society. http://www.cancer.org/treatment/survivorshipduringandaftertreatment/when-cancer-doesnt-go-away. Accessed March 7, 2013.
- Cancer-related fatigue. Fort Washington, Pa.: National Comprehensive Cancer Network. http://www.nccn.org/professionals/physician_gls/f_guidelines.asp. Accessed March 7, 2013.
- Shanafelt TD, et al. Phase 2 trial of daily, oral polyphenon E in patients with asymptomatic, Rai stage 0 to II chronic lymphocytic leukemia. Cancer. 2013;119:363.
- Green tea. Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database. http://www.naturaldatabase.com. Accessed March 7, 2013.
- Shanafelt TD, et al. Hematologist/oncologist disease-specific expertise and survival: Lessons from chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL)/small lymphocytic leukemia (SLL). Cancer. 2012;118:1827.
- Shanafelt TD (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. April 2, 2013.
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