A 61-year-old man with acute promyelocytic leukemia (APL) is described in whom some leukemic promyelocytes contained granules similar to those of basophils, and hyperhistaminemia developed after treatment with all-trans retinoic acid. The symptoms of hyperhistaminemia, mediated via H2 receptors, were prevented by the administration of an H2-blocker, famotidine, but wheezing due to bronchospasms, mediated via H1 receptors, developed and was improved by administration of chlorpheniramine. In APL, it is generally thought that the maturation of neutrophilic leukocytes is arrested at the level of abnormal promyelocytes. However, heterogeneity of leukemic promyelocytes has been described and in a few patients some leukemic promyelocytes have been known to show basophilic features. Marked basophilia and severe symptoms due to hyperhistaminemia have recently been reported after the treatment of APL with ali-trans retinoic acid. Our case presented similar basophilic features, but indicated that the symptoms of hyperhistaminemia after administration of retinoic acid can be prevented with antihistaminic drugs and suggested that both H1 and H2- blockers should be administered to such APL patients with basophilia.

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