Leukaemia

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Leukaemia:

What is Leukaemia? 

It is a cancer of the white blood cells. It's classified according to the type of white blood cells affected by cancer - ie Chronic Lymphocytic Leukaemia (used to fight viral infections) or Chronic Myeloid Leukaemia (fighting bacterial infections)

what happens in chronic leukaemia?

  • stem cells are produced by bone marrow
  • stem cells have the ability to create other specialised cells that carry out important functions such as - red blood cells (carry oxygen around the body), white blood cells (fight infections) and platelets (stop bleeding)
  • cancer begins in the stem cells - produce more white blood cells which are deformed and arent as effective - vulnerable to infection
  • also there are fewer red blood cells and platelets produced
  • can cause anaemia, tiredness, excessive bleeding

Acute Leukaemia progresses rapidly and aggressivly and requires immediate treatment. There are two main types - Lymphicytes (viral infections) and neutrophils (bacterial infections)

what happens in acute leukaemia?

  • bone marrow begins to realise a large number of immature white blood cells (blast cells)
  • rapidly disrupt the normal balance of cells in the blood
  • body does not have enough red blood cells or platelets.
  • if left untreated, you will not recover because your blood supply will not function properly.

Causes:

Acute Leukaemia begins with an alteration to the structure if DNA found in the stem cells responsible for producing white blood cells - genetic mutation.

unknown what triggeres the condition's development and causes the initial mutation to occur in the stem cells, but it can be caused by having a smiliar gentic mutation.

causes in adualts include:

  • being exposed to the chemical benzene (found in petrol and cigarettes)
  • being exposed to high levels of radiation

Major Symptoms:

Usually begins slowly before rapidly getting severe as the number of blast cells in your bloodstream increase. Symptoms include:

  • Pale…

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