Leukemia is one of the most common types of cancers. According to a medical survey, it is the 10th, on the list of ten common forms of diseases. Leukemia is a blood cancer that mainly begins at the bone marrow. It is a condition that occurs in the lymphatic system of the body. There are three kinds of blood cells that an organism produces. Leukemia causes general weakness.
- Red Blood Cell (RBC) -It is the blood cell that supplies oxygen from lungs to other body parts
- White Blood Cell (WBC)- This blood cell fights against infection and other diseases to protect our body
- Platelets- It is the one that helps clotting blood.
According to medical science, in an average healthy body, red blood cells take most of the place then WBC and Platelets. All three are the significant parts of a robust system because these three works in their ways to make a body function properly. WBC is the blood cell that fights against viruses and diseases. However, if the production of WBC increases suddenly, after a particular time, it takes up the entire place, and due to this, the output of the other two blood cells decreases. The Dysfunctioning of blood cells in the body causes blood cancer, which is Leukemia. People aged less than 15 years and more than 55 years have higher risks of getting Leukemia. It is essential to have minimum knowledge about such common diseases, like Leukemia causes, leukemia diagnosis, leukemia treatments, etc. To know more about Leukemia, go through the whole article.
Types Of Leukemia
Medical research shows there are four Leukemia types. Leukemia causes depending on the blood cells that got affected and the growth of cancer.
There two Leukemia types that depend on the growth rate of cancer.
- Acute Leukemia
- Chronic Leukemia
The other two models are the ones that rely on the affected cells.
- Myelogenous Leukemia
- Lymphocytic Leukemia
Here is the brief information about the commonly seen types of Leukemia
Acute Lymphocytic Leukemia or ALL
Lymphocytes are the lymphatic tissues that produce cells. These lymphatic tissues play a significant role in the immune system. Acute Lymphocytic Leukemia is when cancer affects lymphocytes, i.e., lymph nodes or central nervous system. This type of cancer is common in children. This type of cancer grows faster.
Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia or CLL
Two types of chronic lymphocytic Leukemia are there. Chronic Lymphocytic leukemia is a condition where the body starts to produce cells that are not normal. In a few cases, these abnormal cells mature and work correctly due to which the patient finds no symptoms of cancer. Because of functioning abnormal cells, the patient can stay without treatment for a long time. It is one kind of Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia.
Another kind of Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia is when the body starts to produce excess abnormal cells, but these cells never mature. The blood cells begin to dysfunction. The patient can see symptoms and should start treatment immediately. This kind of cancer is common in grown-ups.
Acute Myelogenous Leukemia or CLL
Myeloid cells are the cells that produce the three primary blood cells, i.e., Red Blood Cells (RBC), White Blood Cells (WBC), and platelets. Acute Myelogenous Leukemia is the kind of Leukemia where the cancer effects on myeloid cells. Children have a higher risk of getting this type of Leukemia, even it is common in adults.
Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia or CML
Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia doesn’t have significant symptoms, which is sadly dangerous because the patient might have no idea that they have Leukemia. Everyone needs to do blood tests from time to time so that they can start treatment on time. NCI report shows that more than 9000 patients arrive at the hospital to get a diagnosis of Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia. In the last five years, 66.9 percent of patients survived from it.
Leukemia is a common type of cancer. But the most dangerous part of this cancer is that it never shows significant signs or noticeable leukemia symptoms. Leukemia causes a delay in treatment. But here is a few things you should not ignore if found.
- Leukemia is a Condition from dysfunctional WBC, so if you suddenly become infectious to almost everything. Getting headaches, skin irritations, mouth sores, bronchial pneumonia, etc. repeatedly can be a warning to go for a blood test.
- An uncertain fall in body weight and loss of appetite can lead to Leukemia. It’s better to have a check-up if this happens.
- Excessive WBC production takes up more space in the body, which causes a reduction in the production of platelets and RBC. If you see yourself bleeding easily or getting bruises, you must do a blood test because frequent bleeding can be a symptom of Leukemia.
- If you feel pain in your abdominal or swelling there, that’s probably due to the enlarged liver. It is a symptom of Leukemia.
- If you see your neck, armpits, etc. Lymph nodes are swelling that might be a warning for you to visit the doctor.
- You might get anemia out of nowhere as a symptom of Leukemia. Due to less production of RBC, anemia occurs in patients.
- You might hear a ring sound some times, which is a symptom of Leukemia.
- Apart from all these, any problem with your eyesight, mood swings, inadequate mental health, confusion, fever, red patches on the skin, prolonged erections, etc. can be Leukemia causes.
What do you when symptoms repeat?
If any of these repeatedly occurs, then it is a red flag that Leukemia might be there in your body. Fever, seizures, frequent bleeding might lead you to acute Leukemia. Do not wait for a long time, before cancer grows to its worse. The treatment needs to start. If you have a history of Leukemia and you find these symptoms again, visit your doctor as soon as possible.
Medical reports say there are no such Leukemia causes. Sometimes it is because of genetic disorders; sometimes, it’s the environment. However, there are a few things that increase the chance of Leukemia:
- People who undergo radiation therapy, have risks of getting Leukemia
- Exposure to chemicals such as benzene increases the likelihood of Leukemia
- Smoking a lot can lead people to Acute Myelogenous Leukemia
- Drugs used to treat cancer might increase the risk of AML or ALL
- Myelodysplastic syndrome or blood disorders to increase the chances of AML.
- Some genetic disorders are like Down syndrome, Li-Fraumeni, etc. increases the risk of Leukemia.
These are not actual causes, but these are the risk factors. Having any of this doesn’t mean that you will surely get Leukemia, but there’s a chance of getting.
Treatments Of Leukemia
Treatments of Leukemia depend on the type of leukemia patient has, their age, health condition, and the growth of cancer.
The Leukemia Diagnosis That Helps Patients
- Chemotherapy- There are some side effects of this treatment such as loss of hair and appetite, nausea, vomiting, infertility ( for adults)
- Radiation Therapy- Side effects of radiation therapy include general weakness, vomiting, etc.
- Biological Therapy- This therapy might cause headaches, irritation, or swelling at the injecting part, fever, etc.
- Stem Cell Transplant- No such side effects other than bleeding.
- Chimeric Antigen Receptor Or CAR T-Cell Treatment- It can cause low blood pressure, faster pulses, suppressed immune function, tumor, etc.
- Targeted Therapy- This therapy can cause nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, bloating, gain in weight, etc. as a side effect.
Here is a list of medications that helps the patient undergoing leukemia treatments
- Transfusion of platelets or blood
- Anti-nausea medications to prevent nausea
- Antibiotics and intravenous injection that contains immunoglobulin to avoid infections
- White and Red cell growth factors to stimulate their production.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Is Leukemia?
Leukemia is a common type of blood cancer that begins from bone marrow.
What Is The Medication Of Leukemia?
Leukemia medication depends on which type of Leukemia does the patients carry, their age, and other health issues they might have. Leukemia is a kind of blood cancer commonly seen in children and older people. It has cured in some cases. But according to the NCI reports, the death rate of older people Leukemia causes is higher than the death rate of children. However, in the last few years, the death rate has decreased by a considerable percentage due to modernized treatments.
What Are The Death Rates Due To Leukemia?
According to the surveys between 2007 to 2013, death rates fell lower. Here is a list of percentage of leukemia survivors in the period of 2007-2013
Percentage of people survived from Acute Lymphocytic Leukemia or ALL :
90% of children survived ALL. And overall, an approximate of 71 percent people with this condition survived.
Percentage of Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia survivers or CLL :
An estimated 86 percent of patients of CLL survived.
The portion of Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia survivers or CML:
The overall survival rate of CML showed up to 68 Percent.
Percentage of People survived from Acute Myelogenous Leukemia or AML:
An approximate survival rate of children and teens below 15 years old turns 66 percent. Overall a 27 percent of AML patients survived.
Is It True That Leukemia Sometimes Comes Back Even After Successful Treatment?
Yes, Leukemia has tendencies of reoccurring. Not all leukemia patients face such conditions. Leukemia has a permanent cure for some patients, and for some, it does not. The reoccurrence of Leukemia depends on the patients, their health, and their response to primary treatments. Leukemia, such as Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia or Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia, tends to come back. But doctors use powerful medication to keep then under control.
Is Leukemia Hereditary Disease?
Heredity is not the actual Leukemia causes, but in some cases, heredity could be a reason behind Leukemia. Mostly genetic disorders can cause Leukemia.
Is It True That Leukemia Causes Bleeding?
Leukemia is the kind of blood cancer in which WBC production takes most of the space, causing reduced production of RBC and platelets. Platelets help in blood clotting, but since they produce in a low quantity, they become unable to clot blood. It becomes easy to bleed and creates dark blue or purplish patches or bruises on the body.
What Are The Conventional Treatments For Leukemia?
Chemotherapy is the most common treatment people get for Leukemia. But there are radiation therapy, biological therapy, targeted therapy, CAR T-cell treatment, stem cell transplant, etc. But these treatments include side effects.
Are There Any Food Restrictions For Leukemia Patients?
People dealing with Leukemia needs to follow the strict diet their doctor suggests. Leukemia causessevere weakness in patients. Here are the essential food items that a leukemia patient must include in a menu.
- Foods that contain high protein such as – fish, eggs, lean meat
- Foods and dairy products with low fat
- Whole grains
- Fresh fruits and vegetables. At least 5-10 times a day.
Do Cannabis can Help In the Treatment?
It is common for patients undergoing chemotherapy to get Leukemia. But there are two kinds of cannabinoids that have anti-cancer properties. THC and CBD, these two cannabinoids help such patients to fight against Leukemia. Leukemia is curable.
How Does Turmeric Help In Leukemia Treatment?
Turmeric has curcumin in it. Curcumin is a natural compound that helps to fight a type of Leukemia. It uses to treat Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia. It applies to treat Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia.
What Are the Other Types of Blood Cancer Except For Leukemia?
There are three kinds of blood cancers, including Leukemia.
Leukemia is a stage-dependent blood cancer that occurs due to the increased production of white blood cells. There are no such noticeable symptoms of Leukemia, so it’s better to keep doing blood tests from time to time. Leukemia causes hair loss and loss of appetite. It is curable in some cases, and with new technologies and treatment methods, curing Leukemia has become more comfortable.