Since patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) in the real world have a much different clinical picture than patients recruited in the clinical trials, obtaining real-world evidence of medication adoption is important for therapeutic efficiency and safety. This study used three population-based data in Taiwan, the National Health Insurance Research Database, Taiwan Cancer Registry, and National Death Registry, between 2001 and 2015, to investigate the effect of conventional chemotherapy (CCT) versus non-conventional chemotherapy (NCCT) on the overall survival (OS) of patients with AML (n = 7,763). Cox proportional hazard regression was used to estimate the hazard ratios (HR) of different treatments on the risk of mortality. To reduce the potential selection bias, we used the inverse probability of treatment weighting based on the propensity score to balance the baseline characteristics between patients receiving CCT and NCCT. The median survival time for CCT and NCCT arms was 10.2 months (95% confidence interval (95% CI): 9.7–10.9) and 4.1 months (95% CI: 3.8–4.5), respectively. Compared to the patients received NCCT, those receiving CCT had a lower risk of mortality (HR 0.63 (95% CI: 0.59–0.67, P < 0.001). Subgroup analysis showed that CCT did benefit patients in different gender, age, comorbidity, and socioeconomic status (SES) groups. In conclusion, the real-world population-based data exhibited CCT were more likely to be prescribed for patients with AML of younger age, fewer comorbidities, diagnosed recently (2011–2015), and higher SES. In fact, CCT had better treatment outcomes than NCCT in terms of OS for adult patients diagnosed with AML.