Consensus guidelines for the diagnosis and management of patients with classic hairy cell leukemia

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article


Hairy cell leukemia is an uncommon hematologic malignancy characterized by pancytopenia and marked susceptibility to infection. Tremendous progress in the management of patients with this disease has resulted in high response rates and improved survival, yet relapse and an appropriate approach to retreatment present continuing areas for research. The disease and its effective treatment are associated with immunosuppression. Because more patients are being treated with alternative programs, comparison of results will require general agreement on definitions of response, relapse, and methods of determining minimal residual disease. The development of internationally accepted, reproducible criteria is of paramount importance in evaluating and comparing clinical trials to provide optimal care. Despite the success achieved in managing these patients, continued participation in available clinical trials in the firstline and particularly in the relapse setting is highly recommended. The Hairy Cell Leukemia Foundation convened an international conference to provide common definitions and structure to guide current management. There is substantial opportunity for continued research in this disease. In addition to the importance of optimizing the prevention and management of the serious risk of infection, organized evaluations of minimal residual disease and treatment at relapse offer ample opportunities for clinical research. Finally, a scholarly evaluation of quality of life in the increasing number of survivors of this now manageable chronic illness merits further study. The development of consensus guidelines for this disease offers a framework for continued enhancement of the outcome for patients.


  • Michael R. Grever
  • Omar Abdel-Wahab
  • Leslie A. Andritsos
  • Versha Banerji
  • Jacqueline Barrientos
  • James S. Blachly
  • Timothy G. Call
  • Daniel Catovsky
  • Claire Dearden
  • Judit Demeter
  • Monica Else
  • Francesco Forconi
  • Alessandro Gozzetti
  • Anthony D Ho
  • James B. Johnston
  • Jeffrey Jones
  • Eric Kraut
  • Robert J. Kreitman
  • Loree Larratt
  • Francesco Lauria
  • Gerard Lozanski
  • Emili Montserrat
  • Sameer A. Parikh
  • Jae-Hyun Park
  • Aaron Polliack
  • Graeme R. Quest
  • Kanti R. Rai
  • Farhad Ravandi
  • Tadeusz Robak
  • Alan Saven
  • John F. Seymour
  • Tamar Tadmor
  • Martin S. Tallman
  • Constantine Tam
  • Enrico Tiacci
  • Xavier Troussard
  • Clive S. Zent
  • Thorsten Zenz
  • Pier-Luigi Zinzani
  • Brunangelo Falini
External organisations
  • Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center
  • Hofstra University
  • Mayo Clinic Minnesota
  • Institute of Cancer Research London
  • Royal Marsden Biomedical Research Centre
  • Semmelweis University
  • University Hospital Southampton
  • Azienda Ospedaliera Universitaria Senese, Siena
  • Heidelberg University
  • National Cancer Institute, USA
  • University of Alberta
  • University of Barcelona
  • Hadassah University Hospital
  • University of Toronto
  • University of Texas
  • Medical University of Lodz
  • Scripps Clinic
  • Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre
  • Technion - Israel Institute of Technology
  • University of Perugia
  • Centre Hospitalier Universitaire Côte de Nacre
  • University of Rochester
  • German Cancer Research Centre
  • St. Orsola-Malpighi University Hospital
  • Ohio State University
  • University of Manitoba
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Hematology
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)553-560
Number of pages8
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2017 Feb 2
Publication categoryResearch