Leukemia is cancer of the blood cells. When someone has leukemia, the body makes large numbers of abnormal blood cells. Leukemias are a diverse group of diseases including those listed below. The relationship between leukemia and the environment is still not well understood; however, studies have determined that exposure to high levels of ionizing radiation has been linked to specific types of leukemia in both adults and children. Ionizing radiation exposures can be from natural or man-made sources. Radon is a natural gas coming from rocks and soil, and is sometimes found at high levels in home basements. Most man-made exposures to ionizing radiation come from X-rays or medical devices. Read more about leukemia.

  • Chronic lymphocytic leukemia - Chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) is a type of cancer that starts in the white blood cells (lymphocytes) in the bone marrow. It then invades the blood. Leukemia cells tend to build up in the body over time. In many cases people have no symptoms for at least a few years. Compared to other types of leukemia, CLL usually grows slowly.
  • Acute myeloid leukemia - Acute myeloid leukemia (AML) goes by many names, including acute myelocytic leukemia, acute myelogenous leukemia, acute granulocytic leukemia, and acute non-lymphocytic leukemia. "Acute" means that the leukemia can progress quickly, and if not treated, would probably be fatal in a few months. AML is a cancer that starts in the cells that are supposed to mature into different types of blood cells. AML starts in the bone marrow (the soft inner part of the bones where new blood cells are made), but in most cases it quickly moves into the blood. Both children and adults can get leukemia.

Measures are presented as either annual data at the state level or as five year aggregate data at the county level. Leukemia measures are also featured under Childhood Cancer.

View the measures and access data charts, tables, and maps