If you were a patient diagnosed with chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) in 1980, your doctor would have probably shared something to the effect of: “The good news is that CLL is a slowly progressing disease. The challenge is that once it progresses, we won’t have many options. There’s chemotherapy and not much else.” The prognosis that the doctor may or may not have shared with you was that the five-year survival rate was 69%, and it was much worse when you relapsed.
Fast-forward to today and the story looks very different for the next generation of CLL patients. Today, 83% of patients will survive five years, and a significant portion will make it past 10 years—and this statistic is improving as we speak. While “cure” isn’t in the lexicon yet, the treatments are certainly headed in the right direction.Read More