Bruising: How do you define normal and 2 much. I... - CLL Support

CLL Support

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showdog profile image

How do you define normal and 2 much. I get bumped around alot because of my occupation. I can say that the bruises could be justified however I have several on the same arm not big and one on my left that appeared after scratching bug bite next to it. So is easy bruising an alarm? I am 61 years old. They look like a normal bruise. So just trying to distinguish between normal and abnormal. I have had no treatment.

20 Replies

I am much the same, I have only to bump into the furniture and I get a bruise. I don't remember if I always been like this but wouldn't hurt to mention it at your next consultation. I shall!!

Are you being treated

cllady01 profile image
cllady01Volunteer in reply to showdog

Showdog, easy bruising (bleeding under the skin) in Leukemia is linked to lower platelets.

Low platelets is called Thrombocytopenia. While I have not been treated, I have had thrombocytopenia since I was diagnosed.

It is important to tell your CLL Dr. of you observation in regard to more bruising. Your platelet levels may be going lower than they have been up to this point.

Please report your observation to the Dr. and then notice on your next blood draw report the platelet level posted. You could be bumping your arms, hands, legs more with the weather getting better and a bit more freedom from our constant Covid watch.

Let us know what you find out about your platelets..

showdog profile image
showdog in reply to cllady01


No, still watch and wait. White count was up last time so I was told that maybe treatment will start later this year.


showdog profile image
showdog in reply to showdog

Me too

Showdog,For me bruising is part of my CLL package. Everybody with CLL is little different, I bruise enough to wear long sleeved sun shirts all summer, partially to cover the bruises and also to prevent skin cancers, just part of my CLL package.


showdog profile image
showdog in reply to SlowCLL

Thank you

I agree with those who say you shall be cautious about your platelet count. My collegue at work noticed the many bruises on my arms. I was going to fly to Warsaw in a couple of days, so called my nurse and asked if it was ok to fly with bruises. Was advised to take a new blood draw and ended up in the hospital instead of in Warsaw....Six years ago. Platelets are not to be trusted, but easy to check.

Too much relative to your baseline. How much bruising did you suffer before your diagnosis? I think this can't be compared person to person.

showdog profile image
showdog in reply to LeoPa

No bruising before. It's not scary bruising just bumping in to things

I have always bruised easily due to being thin skinned Irish decent. With that said, I do see bruises now that I don’t know the cause of. I am still W&W and my platelets are still in normal range so we are each very different in our journey.

showdog profile image
showdog in reply to J1015

Very true

Hi. Let me say that until I started Imbruvica I Rarely had bruises even in 2013 having chemotherapy FCR fir CLL. In 2019 started relapsing and I’m in April 2020 started the Imbruvica and after a few months started having bruises which after a week or 2 went away. It then come back on my hands and arm and sometimes on my body . Now the bruises became very large . Have no clue why so I had a ct scan and maybe will know more . My blood work results has been good for the past year .

showdog profile image
showdog in reply to Kmegood

Good to here

Do know also that supplements, which I continue to take, such as Vitamin E and fish oils, "thin" your blood (whatever that means) and can make bruising more common. I haven't been having much bruising lately but did, a week ago, get a purpura spot or whatever it is, dark purple blood under skin spot from nothing I know of. That wasn't welcomed.

I have bruises in odd places that I know I haven't bumped -various places on my stomach, hips and arms. I don't know whether it is due to the CLL or the Imbruvica. I've just learned to live with it.

As others have said, everyone's journey in CLL is different. My problems started with low and falling platelet levels noticed in my 6 monthly diabetes checks. My GP referred me to the haematologist. She did more detailed blood tests and referred me to the immunologist as she was more concerned with my abysmally low IgG, IgA and IgM levels than my low platelets which were then about 70 or half the average level. The Immunologist put me onto replacement IgG by subcutaneous perfusion. The IgG levels went up to about 50% of "normal". Other symptoms worsened so a cervical lymph node biopsy was done and, hey presto! a provisional diagnosis of CLL. This was confirmed by a bone marrow biopsy and by this time the platelets were down to 30. My haematologist got me onto acalabrutinib and, progressively the platelet levels are rising, now back up to a heady 70. The IgG levels are also rising, the weekly replacement dose has dropped from 20g to 16g and my IgG levels are now into the "normal" range. As for the bruising; I am a spectacular rainbow man! Bruises all over and in a wide gradation of colours. When platelets were at their lowest I also had widespread petetciae on my lower legs. When cut, I don't seem to bleed to excess and minor cuts heal quickly as normal barely needing even a simple plaster. The area of my abdomen where I perfuse the IgG is an even, overall, mauve colour where the skin stretches slightly over the infusion sites. Minor impacts look far more bruised then they feel. I can't say the BTK inhibitor has caused the bruising because the thrombocytopenia and growing sensitivity to bruising was there long before anyone suspected CLL and certainly before treatment. If anything, the BTK inhibitor is allowing my marrow to make more haemoglobin, more platelets and more immunoglobulin. Perhaps, over time, the bruising will lessen, too.

I have CLL on IBRUVICA which brought platelets up to very normal 270. But old age means in any case less of body tissue elasticity and thin skin. I use arm protectors (like stockings over the arm and hand except fingers), and I use white dermatology cloves then covered by medical nitrile gloves for housework and eating. Plus at times I wear elbow protectors on top of the arm protectors. This avoids some bruising caused by CLL or old age. The articles are all available on Amazon and similar.

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