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Can you die from hairy cell leukemia?

By June 28, 2010 - 5:31am
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I believe that I cantracted hairy cell leukemia when I was very sick in 2005 I had potasium drip in one arm and rehydration fluid on another arm and I felt I was on my death bed. My white blood cell count was very, very low. I had blood tests every 4 hours and I was getting so fatigued because of so much blood tests that it began to put a strain on my arteries around my heart. I used to feel very faint and very light headed. My memory started to fade and it has affeced me still a little bit but I am managing it. I will never forget evry time the potasium stores were building me back up when I would bleed it out of the rear end. I was in hospital for 4 months. The day I finally came out of hospital I was so tired and exhausted I had no energy what so ever.

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EmpowHER Guest

I just found out that I have hcl. I have never been afraid of anything until now. I have two beautifull daughters that I hope to live long enough to see my grand kids. I have pain all over my body and feel tired by mid-day. All I wanted to achieve was to become another famous face on TV or a movie and I can't even do that. Just wanted to express myself if anyone cares. Good bye world I know I will still live in spirit. God bless.

November 5, 2014 - 1:51pm
Expert HERWriter Guide Blogger (reply to Anonymous)

Hi Anonymous -

I have been living with leukemia since 2009. I suggest that you get as much information as you can to better understand hairy cell leukemia and your treatment options. A good place to start is the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.


With more information, and a good medical team, you just may find that you have a better future than you think.

Wishing you the best,


November 5, 2014 - 6:49pm
Expert HERWriter Guide Blogger

wizzy989 - Hairy cell leukemia is a very rare condition, so I'm wondering what has caused you to ask about this particular cancer ? To confirm or rule this out you would need to undergo some diagnostic tests, starting with a blood test and then most likely proceeding to a bone marrow biopsy if your blood test indicates abnormalities. If you are seriously concerned about having any of the leukemias then you should have a blood test done.

barbnjamie is correct, you can die from hairy cell leukemia, but there are also patients who are successfully treated. In any case, you would be best advised to get tested to determine exactly what's causing your symptoms and to get the treatment you need to feel better. Please let us know what you learn, and if we can help you further.

October 13, 2010 - 6:09pm

Hello Wizzy

You can die from almost anything, but hairy cell leukemia tends to be more of an ongoing, chronic illness than an aggressive fatal cancer. We have information on this: https://www.empowher.com/condition/hairy-cell-leukemia, as does Mayo Clinic: http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/hairy-cell-leukemia/DS00673.

As far as the low potassium, that does make you feel like death. I have personally experienced that and it is an awful feeling. I'm glad you are not feeling like that any longer.

I will guess that our cancer specialist may reply to you as well, and if you have further questions, please let us know. Thank you for writing.

June 29, 2010 - 6:53am
(reply to Cary Cook BSN RN)

yes u can die from hairy cell i lost my husband dec 6,2009 from hcl

October 13, 2010 - 12:37pm
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