Exploring Hairy Cell Leukemia

Caner Saygin, MD

A diagnosis of cancer can cause significant emotional distress to a patient.  A diagnosis of a rare leukemia can leave patients and caregivers feeling unsure and nervous about the future.  In this episode, we speak to Dr. Caner Saygin of University of Chicago Medicine about hairy cell leukemia, a rare, but treatable cancer.  Dr. Saygin delves into this disease, highlighting the need for an accurate diagnosis, as well as current and emerging treatments.  Patients will be given hope for a good quality of life while managing this disease.

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Support for this episode is provided by University of Chicago Comprehensive Cancer Center.


  1. Thank you. I was treated for hairy cell 2 years ago (59 yrs.old) using the protocol you spoke of. My symptoms were incredible fatigue, brain fog and a rapid heartrate that I could feel in my head. I needed a blood transfusion even before my first oncology appointment. I live in rural Oregon and had the best oncologist who treated me with assured confidence. I found the treatment very managable and was back to my elementary teaching job in 7 weeks.

    1. Hi I live in Oregon too. I’m newly diagnosed. Curious who your Dr is and where you got treatment. I’m feeling like I need a second opinion. Thank you

      1. Hi Dawn,

        I would recommend contacting our Information Specialists at 800-955-4572. They would be able to help you find another doctor for a 2nd opinion in your area.

  2. Excellent explanation and information! I was not aware of a potential familial component to Hairy Cell Leukemia. This is very useful information to encourage family members to pay attention to their bodies and get in to the doctor with any changes in function. Thank you! Valerie

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