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Leukemia

Leukemia

Leukemia (American English) or leukaemia (British English) (from the Greek leukos λεύκος - white, and haima αίμα - blood) is a type of cancer of the blood or bone marrow characterized by an abnormal increase of immature white blood cells called "blasts".

 

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There is no known way to prevent leukemia.

Article: Leukemia
Source: MedicineNet - Health and ...

People with leukemia are at significantly increased risk for developing infections, anemia, and bleeding. Other symptoms and signs include easy bruising, weight loss, night sweats, and unexplained fevers.

Article: Leukemia
Source: MedicineNet - Health and ...

Most patients with leukemia are treated with chemotherapy. Some patients also may have radiation therapy and/or bone marrow transplantation.

Article: Leukemia
Source: MedicineNet - Health and ...

Chronic leukemia can rarely be cured, but treatment can help control the disease. If you have chronic lymphocytic leukemia, you may not need to be treated until you have symptoms.

Article: Leukemia
Source: WebMD

If you have acute leukemia, you will need quick treatment to stop the rapid growth of leukemia cells. In many cases, treatment makes acute leukemia go into remission.

Article: Leukemia
Source: WebMD

What type of treatment you need will depend on many things, including what kind of leukemia you have, how far along it is, and your age and overall health.

Article: Leukemia
Source: WebMD

If your blood tests are not normal, the doctor may want to do a bone marrow biopsy. This test lets the doctor look at cells from inside your bone.

Article: Leukemia
Source: WebMD

To find out if you have leukemia, a doctor will:

Ask questions about your past health and symptoms.
Do a physical exam. The doctor will look for swollen lymph nodes and check to see if your spleen or liver enlarged.
Order blood tests. Leukemia causes a high level of white blood cells and low levels of other types of blood cells.

Article: Leukemia
Source: WebMD

Leukemia is linked to the following risk factors:
Increasing age
Genetic diseases, such as Fanconi's anemia or Down syndrome
Acquired diseases, such as Hodgkin's disease
First degree relative with leukemia
Excessive exposure to ionizing radiation
Chemical exposure (benzene)
Certain drugs
Chromosomal abnormalities
Cigarette smoking

Article: Leukemia
Source: University of Maryland Me...

Most causes of leukemia are not known. However, the disease has been linked to exposure to large amounts of high energy radiation (from nuclear bombs), occupational exposure to the chemical benzene, viral infections, and chemicals from cigarettes.

Article: Leukemia
Source: University of Maryland Me...

Signs and symptoms of leukemia include:
Fatigue
Fever
Abnormal paleness
Weight loss
Shortness of breath
Easy bruising
Bleeding
Repeated infections
Bone pain
Abdominal pain

Article: Leukemia
Source: University of Maryland Me...

The most common leukemias are:

Acute lymphocytic leukemia (ALL), which comprises 90% of all leukemias in children (although it also occurs in adults)
Acute myelocytic leukemia (AML), which mostly occurs in adults
Chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL), which mostly strikes adults over age 55
Chronic myelocytic leukemia (CML), which mostly occurs in adults

Article: Leukemia
Source: University of Maryland Me...

There are several types of leukemia, grouped as either acute (the diseases progresses rapidly) or chronic (the diseases progresses slowly).

Article: Leukemia
Source: University of Maryland Me...

The cancer cells spread to the bloodstream and lymph nodes. They can also travel to the brain and spinal cord (the central nervous system) and other parts of the body.

Article: Leukemia
Source: A.D.A.M

The term "leukemia" literally means "white blood."

Article: Leukemia
Source: A.D.A.M

The cancerous cells prevent healthy red cells, platelets, and mature white cells (leukocytes) from being made. Life-threatening symptoms may then develop.

Article: Leukemia
Source: A.D.A.M

But in people with leukemia, the bone marrow produces a large number of abnormal white blood cells, which don't function properly.

Article: Leukemia
Source: Mayo Foundation For Medic...

Leukemia usually starts in the white blood cells. Your white blood cells are potent infection fighters — they normally grow and divide in an orderly way, as your body needs them.

Article: Leukemia
Source: Mayo Foundation For Medic...
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