What is leukemia ?

What is leukemia?

What is leukemia
What is leukemia

Leukemia or other name blood cancer; It is a serious disease that describes the symptoms (symptoms) of abnormal cell structures that begin to evolve in bone marrow that are responsible for blood production and the spread of blood and all tissues of the body. Leukemia is a Greek word. It is a name created from the combination of “Leukos (white)” and “Haima (blood)”.

3 blood cells are produced in bone marrow:
  • Erythrocyte (red is the blood cells. Allows the body to exchange “nutrient-waste” and “oxygen-carbon dioxide”. This makes purchases on all the body tissues.)
  • Leukocytes (white blood cells. The most important elements of the body’s defense mechanism. He fights infections.)
  • They are called platelets (“blood stamps” or “platelet”). These blood stamps serve as barriers to blood pressure in the veins. In cases of injuries, these pulses attack where the wound is, and there will clot the blood to help stop the wound.
These blood cells produced in bone marrow are leukocytes, namely white blood cells, with the most efficacy in leukemia. Leukocytes are divided into 3 main groups.
  • Neutrophili
  • Monositler
  • Lymphocytes
Neutrophili and monocytes undertake the task of fighting with microorganisms that are externally included in the body; Lymphocytes have an active role in ensuring immunity to the body. Leukemia disease occurs when any mutation or malignant change occurs in cells that are responsible for the production of lymphocytes in the bone marrow. This type of leukemia is called “lymphocytic” or “lymphoblastic”.
Myeloid is another variation of leukemia. Myeloid leukemia develops when there is a change in the genetics of bone marrow cells that produce erythrocytes (red blood cells), certain leukocytes (white blood cell) types and platelets (blood stamps). Leukemia varieties are examined in two main groups.
  • Acute leukemia
  • Chronic leukemia

What is acute leukemia?

Acute forms of lymphoblastic and myeloid leukemia are also available. Acute species progresses very quickly and cause serious symptoms (symptoms and findings) to develop. There are also chronic varieties of myeloid leukemia:
  • Acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) and acute myeloid leukemia (AML): The types of leukemia caused by immature bone marrow cells cannot perform normal functions when there is a change in these cells. Therefore, it causes abnormal and no-work blood cells to occur. In addition, these leukemili cells prevent the formation of normal blood cells and replace the blood cells. They grow in control, they live longer than normal cells. Which leads to cell accumulation. All this means that a person’s immune system will become weaker by the day.
  • Chronic myeloid leukemia: A variety of leukemia originating from the ripe bone marrow cells. Even if changes occur in the matured cells, they can continue their normal function. At least the functions are near normal. That’s why leukemia progresses very slowly. Shows itself with symptoms of anemia.

What is the healing rate of acute leukemia?

What is the chances of survival of AML leukemia, questions like acute leukemia kills are frequently fallen questions. Because the leukemia in the acute form is very dangerous and advances at the last speed. The harmony between the patient and the doctor is an important issue in the treatment of this disease. The survival rate of this disease is evaluated over 5 years. Most of the classical or modern leukemia treatment methods are applied and the two survival rates are explained in the light of these applications:
  • 5-year survival rate in AML patients under the age of 65:34.9%
  • 5-year survival rate in AML patients aged 65%: 4.1

What causes leukemia?

Causes leukemia
Causes leukemia
As with other types of cancers, the causes of leukemia are not exactly known. A team of viral infections passed in infancy is thought to be a factor in the triggering of leukemia. With the immune system in some way, blood cancer can find its own open door. Scientists have obtained specific data about leukemia causes, according to the stories of many leukemia patients. The following are some factors that may be considered in the category of leukemia causes according to a number of data obtained:
  • A lot of exposure to chemicals (especially if you smell chemical substances such as “formaldehyde”, which is a cell stabilizer)
  • Excess exposure to radioactive radiation (radiation) (computer, television, hair dryer, cell phone or X-ray devices are the tools that contain plenty of radiation.)
  • To carry the genetic diseases that constitute immune weakness (Down syndrome comes at the beginning of these genetic diseases.)
  • Chemotherapy treatment is known to be in direct contact with patients receiving chemotherapy (some chemotherapy drugs destroyed bone marrow cells.)
  • Being infected with viruses that generate serious infections (severe infections play a trigger role in many serious diseases.)
  • Frequent consumption of packaged foods with stale, seasonal or preservatives
  • Living in places with air pollution (many people are exposed to polluted weather these days when industry develops. )
Although these factors are counted among the causes of leukemia, they are still not binding. These factors can take part in each type of cancer or in every serious illness. The story of most leukemia patients is seen to be not faced with a serious skirt when resting.

is leukemia genetic?

Leukemia is not a genetic disorder. Genetic diseases are congenital and transmitted to generations. Even when there is no problem with the innate genetics of the person, one day (sunlight, X-rays, etc.) may develop mutations in the cells in the bone marrow fluid, and the genetic structure of that cell may deteriorate. As with each type of cancer, the faulty gene sequences acquired after the peripheral effect in leukemia play an active role. So leukemia is not a genetic disorder, it’s a generalized disease.

What are leukemia symptoms?

Symptoms of leukemia
What are the symptoms of leukemia
Because leukemia is caused by anemia, the symptoms of leukemia are in fact also symptoms of anaemia. The low blood causes nutrients and oxygen to not be adequately transported to the tissues. So the following symptoms may be observed at the onset of leukemia:
  • Experiencing shortness of breath while moving
  • Percent Wilt
  • Weakness, fatigue

Leukemia Skin Symptoms:

Because of the damage to the immune system with leukemia, many infections develop and it becomes almost impossible to cope with these infections. These infections:
  • Gum Bleeding
  • Nosebleeds
  • Bleeding under the skin
  • Skin red rashes and itching (when pressed on the color does not fade, the size of the needle head)
  • It shows itself as a morarmalar.

Symptoms of acute leukemia:

Symptoms of acute leukemia occur in a very short period of time since the onset of leukemia in the bone marrow begins to evolve. Since acute leukemia is a rapidly advancing leukemia type, it is necessary to consult the health care institution at the time of these symptoms:
  • Symptoms of anemia (weakness, shortness of breath, fatigue, wilt, anorexia)
  • Night Sweats
  • Non-pass infections
  • Rheumatic pain in the bone
  • Skin-induced problems (bruising, rashes, bleeding)
  • Gum problems (blisters, bleeding, inflammations)
  • Nosebleeds
  • In the abdomen, at the bottom of the seat, swelling in the neck area (welded from the swelling of the lymph glands.)

Symptoms of leukemia in children:

About 30% of the cancers seen in children constitute leukemia. The symptoms of leukemia in children aged 2-10 age range are as follows:
  • Stubborn infections and fever
  • Anorexia and weight loss
  • Wilt
  • Past and advancing bruises and glands
  • In your wife, the bulge under the seat
  • Pains in joints
The symptoms of leukemia in 6-8 monthly infants are not apparent. If the immune system develops some viral infections during the first 2-year period and if there is a genetic substructure, these infections may be the trigger factor in leukemia. Vitamin D deficiency is also a trigger factor in leukemia.
The symptoms of leukemia in adults may include all of these mentioned symptoms or some of them. How the symptoms can be experienced, how fast the disease progresses, will vary entirely according to the patient’s structure.

Symptoms of final stage in Leukemia

The final phase of the Leukemia is 4. The stage is called leukemia. So it is the stage where the disease is progressing too far and the chance to fully heal is minimal. Abnormal blood cells are more than enough in the body. Normal cells are not enough for the functions of the body. The body system starts to stay without nutrients and oxygen. The abnormality of leukocytes (white blood cells) of the body’s immune system is weakened by immunity; It makes the body vulnerable to infections.  The final stage symptoms of leukemia include:
  • Stubborn infections and fever
  • Breathing difficulty
  • Constant sleepiness
  • Past weakness
  • Fatigue too fast
  • I can’t do anything that’s making effort
  • A serious wilt in body color
  • Nosebleeds
  • Gingival inflammations or bleeding
  • Blood urine extraction
4th in leukemia The stage findings include:
  • The presence of high proportion of “lymphocytes” in the blood. (lymphocytes are one of the elements that make up white blood cells. The immune response is served.)
  • The amount of platelet falling below the normal level. (Thrombocides are blood stamps. It has the ability to stop blood flow in cases of bleeding. There is a lot of bleeding in the body since the platelet count is decreased.)
  • The growth of lymph glands (with swelling in the armpit and neck area makes itself apparent. The most important symptom of leukemia)
  • Spleen and liver growth
  • Advanced anemia

Diagnosis of leukemia

Leukemia diagnosis
Diagnosis of leukemia
Since blood tissue is the vital fluid of the body, genetic disorders developing in these cells have very serious complications. As is known, the blood cells are important role in the exchange of nutrients-waste, oxygen-carbon dioxide. When the functional disorder develops in the blood cells, it finds an echo in the case of general health in a short period of time.
Swelling of lymph glands, growth in the spleen and liver are the first findings observed in examinations. The story of the patient is rested from start to finish and the findings are evaluated. The definitive diagnostic methods begin after this phase. In terms of not risking life, it is imperative to hurry for early diagnosis in leukemia.

Can leukemia be determined by blood test?

Yes. Blood analysis has an important role in diagnosing leukemia. Leukemia directly affects blood values. Abnormalities in the results of blood counts provide serious preliminary information even when leukemia is what kind of leukemia. In addition to blood counts, biochemistry tests are performed in the bloodstream.
The functionality of cancerous blood cells is either absent or limited. These abnormal cells also block the production of normal cells. In this case, the blood counts (erythrocyte, leukocytes and platelet ratios) have a cliff-level abnormality. This blood sample is also examined under the microscope. Genetic abnormalities in cells are observed and recorded. It is also taken from the bone marrow tissue (biopsy) and pathology to ascertain the diagnosis and to determine the stage if any. Bone marrow fluid is taken with a syringe after local anesthesia from the hip bone. This liquid is examined by spreading on the glass and is examined if there is a pathological condition (causing the disease).
The diagnosis of acute leukemia is unfortunately more frequent records. (% 95 percent) As is known, acute leukemia is a rapidly advancing leukemia variant. Therefore, the quicker the disease is diagnosed, the more positive the result will be taken. If the number of normal cells in the blood is less than the number of cancerous cells called “blast”, the diagnosis of leukemia can be put in a definite way.
It is possible to diagnose the diagnosis of leukemia as a result of these investigations. But the main thing is to determine what kind of leukemia this leukemia is, and that’s the hardest part of the job. The method called “Immun phenotypic” was developed to determine the types of leukemia. Together with this method, the genetics of the cell can be examined, molecules can be extracted and different types of acute leukemia may be differentiated.
85% of the diagnosis of acute leukemia is acute lymphoblastic leukemia, which we call all; 15% AML is acute myeloid leukemia. Since the ALL sample was more common, there was a chance to do more research on this subject and very good drugs were produced. Therefore, better results are taken in ALL treatment.

What are leukemia phases?

Leukemia stages
What are the stages of leukemia
Leukemia staging can vary according to the types of leukemia. It is known that leukemia disease is divided into two main groups as acute leukemia and chronic leukemia. The type of the cell is based on the type of acute leukemia (ALL and AML). The images are examined under the microscope of the cells and the leukemia phase is determined by these images. It’s called a FAB classification system. (FAB: French-American-English classification system)
leukocytes; That is, lymphocytic leukemia occurs with cancer of the white blood cells “lymphocytes”. In the form of acute ALL, chronic form is called CLL. This type of leukemia is seen in the number of white blood cells (neutrophilides, monocytes and lymphocytes). In myeloid leukemia (AML and CML), the number of immature white blood cells (myeloblasts) in the bone marrow is looked at. According to the number of these, the rating of the stage from 0 to 4. The following criteria are also included in ratings (staging):
  • The size of the swelling in the liver and spleen
  • Patient Age
  • The size of the damage to the bone
  • Status of Chromomzs (genetic abnormalities)
  • Platelet count (the number of platelets in leukemia is far below the normal reference range.)
  • Whether there are other blood disorders available; What size is it
In the staging of chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL), the “Rai Classification” method is used. This classification is performed from 0 to 4 stages.
  • Rai stage 0: Low risk phase. Leukocytes (white blood cells/lymphocytes) appear more than usual in blood counts. It’s called lymphocytosis.
  • Rai Stage 1: Medium risk group. In this phase, the lymph becomes swollen. Lymphocytosis is also active in this phase.
  • Rai Stage 2: In this phase, swollen lymph and lymphocytosis, as well as spleen and liver swelling are seen. It is considered a medium risk group.
  • Rai Stage 3: This stage is a high-risk phase. There are many signs of blood disease. Lymphocytosis, swelling in the lymph, anemia, erythrocyte (red blood cell) is a low in progress.
  • Rai Stage 4: The highest risk stage. Lymphocytosis, thrombocytopenia (the platelets are below the normal level) and all other symptoms of leukemia are in the line. The rate of response to treatments is very low.

Leukemia treatment

Leukemia treatment is determined by the type of leukemia, the age of the patient, the overall health condition and the size of the disease in the body. It is known that idealistic physicians who are experienced in this regard and who may be able to pursue their patients in strict pursuit have more successful results in the treatment. Therefore, it is imperative that the physician be chosen correctly in treating leukemia.
Since acute leukemia (AML and ALL) is a fast-paced type, it is vital to start treatment without wasting any time. The following stages are present in the treatment of acute leukemia:
  • Remission-Induction treatment: An initial treatment lasting about 8 weeks. It’s a pretty tough treatment process. Therefore, the treatment is performed by hospitalized. The word “remission” means “full recovery.” In other words, leukemia findings are not observed at the end of the treatment and are aimed to regain health.
  • Treatment of konsalidation (reinforcement): the treatment is reinforced so that the full remission can be preserved for a long time. Stem cell transplantation (transplant of bone marrow tissue from another) or chemotherapy application can be applied in the treatment of reinforcement. The way in which a path is monitored is determined by the patient’s condition. If the patient has a low risk of recurrence of leukemia, treatment is maintained with chemotherapy only. If the risk situation in the patient is moderate or high, bone marrow transplantation is possible. Finding the proper donor (the person who donates stem cells) is always difficult. Usually the patient’s siblings help with this. In terms of both volunteering and tissue harmony, brothers have always had an advantage.
Chronic leukemia is a kind of slow-advancing leukemia. However, especially since chronic myeloid leukemia is a type of leukemia that affects all blood cells, treatment should be planned and should be initiated as soon as it is diagnosed. In this way, the control of the disease is ensured.
Chronic myeloid is a highly effective drug type used in leukemia. The “imatinib mesylate” has been a revolutionary in this type of leukemia with its distinctive functions, which is a factor of the drug. Patients can live in a single dose of a day without feeling sick for many years, access to full recovery status (Reminyona) and control of the disease.
Some patients diagnosed with chronic lymphoblastic leukemia may not require long-term treatment. It varies according to the risk condition of leukemia, the age of the patient and other diseases that are developing in parallel, the patient’s symptoms related to leukemia and the intensity and severity of an emergency treatment. The application of marrow transplantation, chemotherapy or antibody therapies are determined by the physician according to the condition of the patient and disease.

How long is leukemia treatment?

How long does leukemia cure take?
How long does leukemia cure take?
How long it takes to treat leukemia or blood cancer; It is not possible to give a clear answer. The rate at which each patient is diagnosed is different from each other. The age range of diagnosis is also influenced by this period. The dose of the drug is determined by the criteria for how long it is taken. However, it is not impossible to estimate the duration of the treatment, and to reap the average time. Doctor tracking is important in this prediction execution.
The treatment process of leukemia is usually similar. Previously acquired experience is recorded and the average duration of treatment is determined by these records. The first stage of treatment is aimed at the killing of blood cancer cells. Cancer cells are killed by radiotherapy (radiation therapy) or chemotherapy (medication treatment) methods. After remission has been obtained; This means that after the cancer cells and the findings of the body are completely eliminated, the consolidation treatment, also called reinforcement therapy, is started. This treatment is prevented from recurrence of the disease. In this process, the only single cancer cells can be entered into a minor treatment process if detected. Consolidation therapy is a control treatment. This treatment is determined in the process of not being completely purified from the disease. These two treatment methods are applied alternately until they are assured that there is no single cancer cell and will not repeat.
No matter how well it is applied, it can remain cancerous cells in the body even after the two treatment processes. In consideration of this possibility, the third stage care treatment is applied. Chemotherapy is also applied in the treatment of care. This treatment prevents the growth and activation of existing cancerous cells that have not been noticed. Usually this treatment lasts for 3 or 5 years. Even after 5 years, it is considered to have a bone marrow transplant method for leukemia treatments that do not result.  Furthermore, if there are other updated treatment methods and the situation is appropriate, then that treatment method can be applied. Usually, bone marrow transplantation is a positive result of a leukemia treatment method. This treatment is carried out by the transplant of stem cells from a healthy individual who is equal to the patient and tissue.

Considerations during Leukemia treatment

What to consider during the treatment of leukemia
What to consider during the treatment of leukemia
Chemotherapy drugs used to treat leukemia have the ability to suppress bone marrow tissue. When the bone marrow is pressed, blood production is also pressed. Therefore, while chemotherapy therapy is in process, erythrocyte (red blood cell) and platelet (blood pulp) supplementation will be given.
The leukocyte (white blood cell) level decreases with leukemia, which weakens the person’s immunity. Therefore, the person who enters the patient should be careful in this period. The people who visit may endanger the life of the leukemia patient (for example, the Gribal infection). Therefore, it is more desirable for sick people to visit, and others to keep their visits short. The doctor decides whether or not to allow visits. Hospital rules are also important in this context. In terms of reducing the risk of infection, visits should be made one by one. Again, due to its immune weakness, food outside the hospital should not be fed to the patient.

Does leukemia cure cause infertility?

Unfortunately, chemotherapy drugs may be the cause of infertility. These medications affect normal cells as well as the cancerous cell. As a result of the effects of cellular functions, the egg or sperm cells may lose their functionality and the chance of fertilization may be too low. Therefore, it is recommended that male patients freeze their sperm and store them in the sperm bank before they enter the treatment process.
In order for female leukemia patients to continue their reproductive chances after treatment, egg freezing is performed; However, it is not possible to achieve successful results as well as sperm. In the laboratory environment, the embryo of the female patient with the combination of the male’s sperm is produced by the freezing process of 90-95% of the successful results can be achieved.

Symptoms of death in Leukemia

Signs of death in leukemia
Signs of death in leukemia

Patients are unresponsive, the disease is progressing and the entire body system is taken over by the “end of life phase” is not to be hunted; On the contrary, he wants to face facts. That makes them feel a lot better.

Especially the patient relatives are very interested in talking about “death”. They see the talk of this subject as a sign of despair and they do not want to accept it. The real expectations of the families are the relationship between patient-doctor and patient relatives. However, this relationship is very valuable in both the treatment process and the end of life phase.
In the planning of the palliative care in Leukemia, the doctor is very large in explaining the current realities with a language suitable for patient and patient relatives. (Palliative care is a maintenance that is applied to minimize complaints and improve quality of life.) The doctor, especially in the face of death with the nose, the patient and the relatives of the family by understanding how strong the compassion and communication, the quality of the end of life for the patient will be experienced.

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