LEUKEMIA SYMPTOMSSymptoms may vary but are likely to include a low grade fever, loss of appetite, unintentional weight loss, excessive sweating, night sweats, fatigue, weakness, tenderness of the spleen which is detectable by pressing up under the ribcage, bleeding bruising, and the appearance of tiny red slots over the skin known as petechia.
LEUKEMIA CAUSESCancer of any type is always caused by cells that are developing too quickly and are out of control. Leukemia is no different, the cells which develop are typically white blood cells, with altered effects on the bone marrow blood cells, and other body tissues.
LEUKEMIA RISK FACTORRisk factors vary by the type of leukemia. Certain types of leukemia are more likely to show up in people over 70 years old while other types attack primarily children. Most leukemia can be linked to a chromosomal abnormality.
A physical examination is likely to reveal an enlarged spleen, which will render other tests viable. Tests which can indicate the presence of leukemia include a test for the presence of the Philadelphia chromosome, a complete blood count, CBC differential, bone marrow aspiration, and a molecular assay for the bcr-abl gene. A patient with leukemia is also likely to have inaccurate or faulty test results regarding uric acid, vitamin B-12, and a platelet count.
LEUKEMIA SIDE EFFECTSThere are numerous complications that can occur while a patient is inflicted with leukemia. Unexplained fevers, fatigue, bleeding, infections, kidney problems, as well as serious side effects from the effects of radiation and chemotherapy are all possible during any stage of leukemia. Chemotherapy is likely to cause an equal amount of illness as well as impact the immune system.
LEUKEMIA TREATMENTThere have been dramatic advancements in the treatment of leukemia over the past twenty years. While chemotherapy and radiation treatments are still the first line of defense, overall health is now taken into consideration. Chemotherapy and radiation treatments tend to lower the body’s immune system, and open up the patient to all kinds of possible infections. Dietary and nutritional therapies have helped considerably in the chronic fight against infection.
Other therapies such as physical therapy to retain patient strength and emotional therapies to retain patient response and effort and emotional stability have also greatly improved outcomes. Facilities that offer all around total health care plus the traditional medications, chemotherapy, and radiation treatments have better overall results than facilities that only treat the cancer and not the entire patient.
Image: Bone marrow diseases
There are a wide range of holistic treatment options available as well, and some patients choose these methods. Nearly 85% of patients who opt for complete holistic treatments return for chemotherapy and radiation treatments within the first six months, although for many of them the choice came too late. Those who only opt for traditional treatment options do not have the success rate that those who opt for a combination of traditional treatment options and holistic care. Traditional treatment options treat the cancer while holistic care treats the entire individual, and the combination of these two approaches seems to be working the best at the time of this writing.
Medical science has also leapt forward in cancer treatments, especially leukemia and childhood leukemia with more effective medications that offer fewer side effects, more intensive treatment options, and of course nutritional therapy.
Leukemia is a battle, and coping with this daily battle can be taxing, difficult, and exhausting not just for the patient but for the entire support team and family. It is vital that family members and patients alike take time out to have fun, laugh, and enjoy each other if only for a day to forget that life is such a struggle. The best therapies of all are those that rejuvenate the soul for the long fight ahead.
In addition, patients should monitor their own health, or have a family member do it for them, to be able to track the progression or regression of their disease. This can help them take a more active role in making decisions about their care.
Medication commonly used for these disease:Leukemia drugs
Complete Blood Count Test
Diagnostic Medical Sonography
Magnetic Resonance Imaging
Nuclear Stress Test
Prothrombin Time Test