Acute promyelocytic leukemia in children: A single centre experience from Turkey

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Aksu T., Fettah A., Bozkaya I. O., Baştemur M., Kara A., çulha V. K., ...More

Mediterranean Journal of Hematology and Infectious Diseases, vol.10, no.1, 2018 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier


© 2018, Mediterranean Journal of Hematology and Infectious Diseases.Background and objectives: Acute promyelocytic leukemia (APL), is a distinct subtype of acute myeloid leukemia (AML) characterized by a tendency to hemorrhage and excellent response to all-trans retinoic acid (ATRA). In this retrospective study, we aimed to determine the incidence, clinical symptoms, toxicities, and outcome of children with APL in our center. Methods: We retrospectively reviewed the medical records of children (age < 18 years) diagnosed with APL in our pediatric hematology department between January 2006-December 2016. Results: Pediatric APL represents 20.5% of AML cases in this cohort. Most of the cases presented as classical M3, albeit hypogranular variant was described in 12% of the cohort. Patients with hypogranular variant APL were differed from classical APL by co-expression of CD2 and CD34. About 3/4 of APL patients had hemorrhagic findings at admission or the induction treatment. Severe bleeding manifested as intracranial hemorrhage was present in three patients and intracranial arterial thrombosis was present in one. Six patients showed side effects of ATRA such as pseudotumor cerebri, differentiation syndrome resulting in dilated cardiomyopathy, and pulmonary infiltrates. Five-year overall survival (OS) and early death rate were found to be 82.5% and 12% respectively. Conclusions: A high frequency (20.5%) of APL was noted among children with AML in this single-center study. The overall mortality rate was 17.5%. Since the induction death rate was 12% and life-threatening bleeding was the primary problem, awareness and urgent treatment are critical factors to reduce early losses.