Acute leukemias immunophenotypes at Agakhan University Hospital, Nairobi

Document Type



Paediatrics and Child Health (East Africa)


Objective: The aim was to determine relative frequencies of acute leukemia immunophenotypes using commonly expressed markers and to describe the clinicopathological characteristics. Design: This was a prospective cross-sectional study. Setting: The study was based at Aga khan clinical laboratory department. Subjects: One hundred and thirty two (132) consecutive blood and bone marrow specimens from patients suspected to have acute leukemia were analysed for cytomorphological characteristics and immunophenotyping. The clinical-pathological characteristics were also recorded. Immunological category was assigned using the EGIL criteria. Results: There were 88 AML and 42 ALL patients analysed for immunophenotypes. Only tw cases of biphenotypic leukemia were found. The commonest overall AML morphological sub-type was AML-M2, 26 (29.5%). Majority of ALL cases were B-cell immunological sub-type (96.6%). Early pre-B phenotype constituted 62.07% and Common B-cell ALL 37.93%. There were only 4 cases of T-cell ALL. Majority of patients presented with anaemia with a median hemoglobin of 7.5g/dl (range 2-15g/dl). The median platelet count was 55 (range 4-462 × 109/L). Conclusion: Immunophenotyping of acute leukemia is beneficial in accurate diagnosis of patients with these malignancies in this setup. T-cell ALL, AML-M6 and M7 are less frequent than what has been reported in most studies in Africa.

Publication (Name of Journal)

East African Medical Journal