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plasma cell leukemia


Definition: an unusual disease characterized by leukocytosis and other signs and symptoms that are suggestive of leukemia, in association with diffuse infiltrations and aggregates of plasma cells in the spleen, liver, bone marrow, and lymph nodes, and the presence of considerable numbers of plasma cells in the circulating blood; the total number of leukocytes in the latter may range from normal levels to 80,000 or 90,000/mm3, and 5–90% may be plasma cells; multiple myelomas are observed in some examples of plasma cell leukemia, but discrete nodules are not formed in bone. Although there are other clinicopathologic differences in the two conditions, they may be phases of the same basic process.

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© Copyright 2018 Wolters Kluwer. All Rights Reserved. Review date: Sep 19, 2016.