- How is acute myeloid leukemia treated?
- Chemotherapy for acute myeloid leukemia
- Other drugs for acute myeloid leukemia
- Surgery for acute myeloid leukemia
- Radiation therapy for acute myeloid leukemia
- Stem cell transplant for acute myeloid leukemia
- Clinical trials for acute myeloid leukemia
- Complementary and alternative therapies for acute myeloid leukemia
- Typical treatment of most types of acute myeloid leukemia (except acute promyelocytic M3)
- Treatment of acute promyelocytic (M3) leukemia
- Treatment response rates for acute myeloid leukemia
- What if the leukemia doesn’t respond or comes back after treatment?
- More treatment information about acute myeloid leukemia
How is acute myeloid leukemia treated?
General treatment information about acute myeloid leukemia
This section starts with general comments about types of treatments used for acute myeloid leukemia (AML). This is followed by a discussion of the typical treatment approach for AML. The treatment of acute promyelocytic leukemia (APL) is different from other subtypes, and is discussed separately.
As noted earlier, adult AML is not a single disease. It is really a group of related diseases, and patients with different subtypes of AML vary in their outlook and response to treatment. Treatment options for each patient are based on the subtype and lab tests of the leukemia cells, as well as certain other prognostic features (described in the section called “How is acute myeloid leukemia classified?”).
Several types of treatment may be used for people with AML. The main treatment for AML is chemotherapy, sometimes followed by a stem cell transplant. Other drugs (besides standard chemotherapy drugs) may also be used to treat people with acute promyelocytic leukemia. Surgery and radiation therapy may be used in special circumstances. See the “Additional resources for acute myeloid leukemia” section for other, more detailed materials on the different types of cancer treatments and their side effects.
In most cases AML can progress rapidly, so it is important to start treatment as soon as possible after the diagnosis is made.
Last Medical Review: 07/24/2013
Last Revised: 09/20/2013