Clinical and Laboratory Aspects of Libyan Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia Patients at the Time of Diagnosis

Original article


Majda Elshukri, Mohamed Lateiwish

Department of Medicine, Hematology Unit, Faculty of Medicine, Benghazi, Libya.

Garyounis Medical Journal Vol. 22, No.2. 2005:29-32


Background: Chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) is a monoclonal disorder characterized by a progressive accumulation of functionally incompetent lymphocytes.
Aims: Evaluation of CLL Rai staging system and identification of patients at high risk at the time of diagnosis. Evaluation of CLL complications at the time of diagnosis.
Materials and Methods: The studied population consists of all patients registered at the hematological unit (Jamahiriya hospital – Benghazi). with a diagnosis of CLL during 10 years period (1994 – 2003). Clinical and laboratory characteristics at the time of diagnosis were reviewed retrospectively.
Results: There were 50 CLL patients during this study period. 34 (68%) were males and 16 (32cf) were females. Out of 50 patients. 31(62%) were aged > 60 years. 7 (14%) were asymptomatic while 43 (86%) were symptomatic. According to Rai staging system, 2 patients (4.0%) were in stage 0, 2 patients (4.0%) were in stage I. 13 patients (26%) were in stage IT, 17 patients (34%) were in stage III and 16 patients (32%) were in stage IV. Patient risk according to Rai staging system. 33 (66/) patients were high risk, 15 (30%) patients were intermediate risk and 2 (4.0%) patients were low risk. Complications of CLL, infection ( 7 patients (14%)), autoimmune hemolytic anemia { 3 patients (6%) } and second primary malignancy { I patient (2.0%)).
Conclusions: The clinical and laboratory aspects of Libyan CLL patients at the rime of diagnosis yielded to Rai stage III and IV in the majority of patients (high risk group – poor prognosis) which will result in a decrease of survival rate. The complications of CLL Libyan patients at the time of diagnosis were in agreement with other studies.

Keywords: chronic lymphocytic leukemia. Rai staging system.