Survey on CLL with Allergies : Hi everyone, I... - CLL Support

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Survey on CLL with Allergies

hmo1 profile image

Hi everyone,

I was just wondering if all CLL Patients have allergies. I have allergies to chemicals, foods and pollen. Also, If we all had allergies could that be why all of us have fatigue.I have been tested many years ago but maybe I should be tested now. I read an article were they did a study on people with cancer and allergies. They said if you had chronic allergies it could make you have cancer because it weakens the immune system.

Thank you

God Bless everyone

20 Replies

I have no allergies. Recently diagnosed but told I've had it since 2014. Stage II unmutated, now in treatment with obinutuzumab and ibrutinib. Never had any allergies, that hasn't changed with CLL.

I have always had seasonal allergies since I was a kid. Strange thing is that my allergies haven’t been much of an issue in the last 5-6 years. My immune system is still ok as I am still in W&W. No illnesses or real allergy issues in the last 5 years. Go figure... 😂 tiredness but not “fatigue” has been a little more of an issue though.

AussieNeil profile image

CLL can make allergic responses worse in some, e.g. discomfort from insect bites worsening after diagnosis. I have personally observed the opposite. I thankfully no longer get huge raised weals from insect bites.

It's interesting to observe the jump in eosinophils during hay fever season bt the white cells that are involved in allergic response.

The possibility that constant inflammation could be behind the development of CLL has also been previously discussed.

in reply to AussieNeil

I’m glad to hear the bugs are not bugging you Neil. I have had the opposite experience. I’ve become a magnet. And each year the bites induce celulitis-extreme swelling and itching. Only cure for me is celaphex 500 and prednisone. Seems to go with the territory. Using lots of repellent. Cheers to all-bill

I had asthma occasionally when young and in a smoggy area. My skin reacted to dog and cat fur by going red and itchy along with sneezing.

I still have a mild oral allergy to birch-pollen foods & ragweed pollen foods & mugwort pollen etc. (banana, carrot, dates, kiwi , cantaloupes, honeydew, walnuts cause welts and itchy throat; and I only feel a bit nauseated on avocado & apple) . The weird thing about it is if the banana or carrot are cooked, then it somehow changes the protein that causes the swelling or welt and the food is ok. I used to refer to these foods as the foods "that bite back". As an example, I'd eat a banana and get a welt on my lip and my back of the throat would feely itchy for about an hour. I could use a carrot as a temporary lip plumper if it was raw, but not when cooked. Other foods just cause a feeling of unease. Apple is slightly nauseating so I don't want to eat it in general but doesn't cause welts or itch, and when apple is cooked it's no problem at all.

Here's a list of oral allergy foods and the associated pollen

Not all foods from each category caused the problems for me and oral allergy is just that, it's oral and doesn't cause any problems with breathing.

hmo1 profile image
hmo1 in reply to 81ue

I know what It feels like to be allergic to so many things. Thank you.

Nope. No allergies here. Diagnosed in May 2015. 6 rounds BR in last half of 2015.

I had asthma as a child, then animal fur. At puberty I developed allergic rhinitis, relating to pollen, animal fur, house dust, perfume, etc. They all disappeared when I became pregnant with my first child and stayed away until I was in my early fifties and came back with a vengeance. I was told by a specialist that it was due to hormone changes (menopause).

I was diagnosed with CLL following a Well Woman check through work aged 60. The allergies are still going strong unfortunately.


I had asthma and allergic rhinitis as a child. I still get Hay Fever. I had eczema as a child and it has in recent years flared up from time to time, 6 years ago and in the last few weeks.

I was diagnosed with CLL in 2008 but I am still in W and W with relatively low ALC and WBC counts (30s)

Been on W&W for the last 8 years and had the disease for about 12, now about to start treatment. No previous allergies but I have noticed in the last few years I have developed a reaction to a number of raw fruits, particularly strawberries but also cherry tomatoes and some apples, which makes my tongue very sore for half an hour or so after eating them. The effects are pretty immediate. I have also developed an aversion to cashew nuts which I previously enjoyed. Personally I think there is a connection with the CLL.

I never had any allergies at all however after I seem to sneeze at least several times a day, as if I now have allergies. Renee said we are both allergic to the whole CLL thing and I should try Zyrtec or something.


I might also be allergic to my cat KooKooNut...not her fur...just her in general :)

I never had allergies and now I have a lot of mild environmental ones - e.g. dust mites, dogs, etc. Bug bites were a disaster last year. Since I'm MRD+ the bug bites don't seem to turn into an oozing mess anymore.

Have always had environmental allergies, hay fever since childhood

Most of my life was allergy free until the time period of pre CLL diagnosis. Now allergies increasing, with hives reactions to previously non allergic exposures. I have read the opposite of some opinions here, that a long history of many allergies gives some protection against CLL. That stuck in my mind because I have a relative who has suffered allergies to so many substances since childhood and I was tempted to point out the positive aspect of little chance of CLL.

I complained of feeling fatigue and on verge of something without fever to my CLL team and they said allergy.

in reply to lexie

Don't listen to them. I had low level fatigue, as you describe for about a year before my diagnoses....after I got Bells Palsey the fatigue crashed on me like a ton of bricks and never really left. I ALWAYS feel like I am on the verge of a cold/flu.

This is related to Cytokines. There are many posts here about them if you want to research it...I did. The doctors at the top tier places like Dana Farber and MDA will not discount fatigue...the rest give the old "you are depressed, take a walk" routine which is so infuriating...well my doctor gave me Ritalin which I mostly don't take cause I don't like it...but he did not discount me.

The fatigue, regardless if you have a little or a lot is definitely CLL related. I would of already been at some top tier place for a consult...except when I researched it there are no real answers for the fatigue there...they understand it...but aside from what my doctors are willing to give me...nothing except treatment.

Scott USA/Maine

THe Fatigue definitely makes me want to say *&%( Leukemia

hmo1 profile image
hmo1 in reply to

Thank you.

I've had horrible problems with my skin and rashes since I started Gazyva. I've completed treatments 18 months ago but skin has been a big problem for almost a year now. I've seen several docs who think it's related to the lymphoma but I've found little relief yet other than constantly applying corticosteroids salves. The lymphoma has relapsed so I'll be looking at treatment options again in the future.

Seasonal allergies since mid-teens, reactive to a range of perfumed and skin products since around the same time but reacting to a greater number over the years until I got very protective about such things. In the last few years have developed several food intolerances so likewise have got rather protective over those - some things are just not worth the hassle.

I have had allergies and asthma since about age 5. Some years are more severe than others. Around age 40 I developed some type of inflammatory arthritis. I am age 70 now.

I have always thought that the fluctuating severity of my allergies was an indicator of the health of my immune system. I have also found that when my allergies go into asthma, I have flu-like symptoms, often with varying degrees of fatigue.

Was diagnosed with CLL approximately one year ago. Stage 0, 13q deletion, mutated, on watch and wait. Still having allergies and asthma. I developed a new allergy this year to pine pollen but I don’t think it was necessarily because of the CLL.

I did have a severe reaction to a mosquito bite early last fall that was diagnosed by the doctors as cellulitis. Never had that before! Doctors suspected it was a DVT but no clots on the scans. It took a strong course of antibiotics to get it cleared up.

Thank you. My biggest allergy with Cll has been to all oils. It is very hard to eat without any oils or dairy.

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