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Leukemia, Lymphoma and Myeloma

Leukemia, lymphoma and myeloma are blood cancers that originate (start) in the bone marrow or in the lymphatic tissues.  They are considered to be related cancers because they involve the uncontrolled growth of cells with similar functions and origins. The diseases result from an acquired (not inherited) genetic injury to the DNA of a single cell, which becomes abnormal (malignant) and multiplies continuously. The accumulation of malignant cells interferes with the body's production of healthy blood cells.

An estimated 139,860 people in the United States were diagnosed with leukemia, lymphoma or myeloma in 2009.  In Ohio, from 2003-2007, the average annual number of new blood cancer cases diagnosed was 4,714.

Leukemia, lymphoma and myeloma will cause the deaths of an estimated 53,240 people in the United States this year.   In Ohio, from 2003-2007, an average of 2,411 people died each year from a blood cancer (leukemia, lymphoma or myeloma).

Every ten minutes, someone dies from a blood cancer. This statistic represents nearly 146 people each day or more than six people every hour. Leukemia causes more deaths than any other cancer among children and young adults under the age of 20. In general, the likelihood of dying from most types of leukemia, lymphoma or myeloma decreased from 1996 to 2005 (the most recent data available).

For More Information

For more information, visit the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society’s Web site:

Last Reviewed 4/19/12