Heart and Blood Conditions

Langerhans Cell Histiocytosis Treatment

Treatment for Langerhans cell histiocytosis depends on how many parts of the body are affected and which parts. Here are the main treatments that doctors use. All of these are offered through Seattle Children’s.

Treatment Options for Langerhans Cell Histiocytosis


Doctors may operate to remove the excess Langerhans cells (used mostly for bones).


Steroid medicine may be injected into the places with excess Langerhans cells.

Anticancer medicines

Chemotherapy medicines used to kill cancer cells may also help control Langerhans cells. Doctors give some types of these medicines through an intravenous (IV) line. For skin problems, they may apply medicines right on the skin. The doses are lower than those used for cancer.

Our patients with this disease receive chemotherapy at our main campus in Seattle — most often in a clinic (as outpatients), but sometimes during a stay in the hospital (as inpatients).


This treatment can help control cells that are damaging bone and making it weak. The doses are lower than those used for cancer. Our patients receive radiation therapy through our partner, UW Medicine.

Learn more about Seattle Children’s Radiation Therapy Service.

New Treatments for Langerhans Cell Histiocytosis

Seattle Children’s is working with the Histiocyte Society to develop better treatments for Langerhans. Your child’s doctor will talk with you in detail about any new treatment that might be a match for your child. Then you can decide whether you want to try that option.

Read more about research and clinical trials at Seattle Children’s.