Acute lymphocytic leukemia - symptoms and treatment

Acute lymphocytic leukemia (ALL) or acute lymphoblastic leukemia or acute childhood leukemia is the cancer that affects blood and bone marrow. Both children and adults get affected by this. The cancer affects a group of immature white blood cells called lymphocytes and spreads very fast. Patients usually becomes exposed to infection and bleeding. It spreads very fast but can be cured by medicine if detected early and treated well.


Symptoms


Fever

Loss of appetite

Weakness

Weight loss

Fatigue

Uncontrolled bleeding

Painless lumps in lymph nodes

Bone or joint pains

Pain below left ribs or spleen swelling

Head ache

Vomiting

Red spot on skin

Blurred vision

Giddiness and seizures.

If the ALL is T-cell ALL it cause breathing problem, coughing, or swelling in head or arms.


Cause


Leukemia is caused by damage that occurs to DNA of developing cells in bone marrow. Those undergoing treatment for other type of cancer, those who have exposed to high levels of radiation even if during pregnancy and Genetic disorders like Down syndrome and those with sibling having ALL may develop this disease. In most cases these need not be the cause.


Treatment

Treatment is available in almost all main hospitals. It includes Chemotherapy, Radiation therapy in acute stage and Bone marrow transplant and induction therapy where a combination of drugs are placed in a vein called catheter are common treatments. A drug called imatinib mesylate (Gleevec) is also found effective.

Links


http://www.leukemia-lymphoma.org/all_page.adp?item_id=7049

http://www.marrow.org/PATIENT/Undrstnd_Disease_Treat/Lrn_about_Disease/ALL/index.html

http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/acute-lymphocytic-leukemia/DS00558/DSECTION=2

http://goldbamboo.com/relate-tl1495-tr2666.html

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