NFL Coach Diagnosed with Leukemia

Chuck Pagano, the first-year coach for the NFL's Indianapolis Colts, has been diagnosed with acute promyelocytic leukemia (APL), according to the Indianapolis Star.

Fatigue and bruising were signs something was wrong

Colts owner Jim Irsay told the press on Monday morning that the coach "was feeling some fatigue over the last few weeks and noticed some bruising on his body that he first thought could have been from contact on the field, or coaching, or playing with his grandkids. Through talking to his wife, Tina, she said, 'You need to get that checked out, because the bruising appears to be more and more prominent.' We had the coach get fully evaluated, and the conclusion was that he did have leukemia."

Acute promyelocytic leukemia

Acute promyelocytic leukemia is regarded as a variant of acute myeloid leukemia--specifically, the most malignant and aggressive form of AML. Without treatment, survival times are measured in months or sometimes just weeks.

Treatment can be highly successful, however, if caught early enough. Treatment unfolds over the span of one to two years and it is measured in three basic stages: Induction (chemotherapy), followed by consolidation therapy (in which the patient is considered cancer-free but treatment is added to "mop up" the remaining cancer cells) and in some cases maintenance therapy.

Provided treatment begins immediately, three-survival figures range as high as 70 percent.

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