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What is Blood Cancer ?
Cancerous formation can attack any organic system of the human physiology. As part of blood cancer, the rapidly multiplying cancerous cells are found attacking the different aspects of the circulatory system. Besides blood and the lymphatic system; the bone marrow can also be the focus of attack. Blood cancer is a form of cancer which attacks the blood, bone marrow, or lymphatic system. There are three kinds of blood cancer - leukemia, lymphoma and multiple myeloma.
In the case of leukemia, the cancer interferes with the body’s ability to make blood. Leukemia attacks the bone marrow and the blood itself, causing fatigue, anemia, weakness, and bone pain. It is diagnosed with a blood test in which specific types of blood cells are counted. Treatment for leukemia usually includes chemotherapy and radiation to kill the cancer, and in some cases measures like bone marrow transplants may be required. There are several different types of leukemia, including chronic myelogenous leukemia, acute lymphoblastic leukemia, and hairy cell leukemia.
Types of Blood Cancer
There are three main types of blood cancers:
Leukemia - a type of cancer found in your blood and bone marrow, is caused by the rapid production of abnormal white blood cells. The high number of abnormal white blood cells are not able to fight infection, and they impair the ability of the bone marrow to produce red blood cells and platelets.
Leukemia marked by an acute destruction of health sustaining red blood cells includes the symptoms of anemia, weakness and extreme fatigue. Consequently one affected by it is likely to sweat and come under bouts of breath shortness in course of performing day to day activities of the regular kind. Vulnerability to infection and swelling of the lymph nodes are some of the other fallouts of Leukemia. Blood tests are likely to present higher counts of white blood corpuscles.
Lymphoma - is a type of blood cancer that affects the lymphatic system, which removes excess fluids from your body and produces immune cells. Lymphocytes are a type of white blood cell that fight infection. Abnormal lymphocytes become lymphoma cells, which multiply and collect in your lymph nodes and other tissues. Over time, these cancerous cells impair your immune system.
One of the most common symptoms of lymphoma includes swollen lymphatic node because this cancer essentially revolves around the lymphatic cells. The swelling is mostly painless in nature. Some of the other indications include loss of weight and appetite, fever, sudden bouts of chill and night sweating. Certain variety of leukemia is also associated with coughing, fatigue, fullness of abdomen and extreme fatigue. Itching, nausea and food aversion may also set in.
Myeloma - is a type of blood cancer that specifically targets your plasma cells. Plasma cells are white blood cells that produce disease- and infection-fighting antibodies in your body. Myeloma cells prevent the normal production of antibodies, leaving your body’s immune system weakened and susceptible to infection.
The initial stage may well go free of symptoms. But with the gradual prognosis of the disease, there ought to be generic feel of fatigue, painful back, susceptibility to infection, breath shortness, bouts of numbness and that of chest pain. Kidney problems are likely to develop on account of myeloma. Blood tests taken are likely to indicate abnormal clusters of plasma cells.
You may not be able to control every situation and its outcome, but you can control your attitude and how you deal with it.
GOD didn’t add another day in your life because you needed it, he added it because someone out there needs you.
The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity, and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, and a deep loving concern. Beautiful people do not just happen.
Dear GOD, if today I lose my hope please remind me that your plans are better than my Dream.....
Causes of Blood Cancer
A number of factors are associated with the development of blood cancer. Older adults are commonly affected by blood cancer. Some of the causes include -
Symptoms of Blood Cancer
Some of the serious symptoms include -
Stages of Blood Cancer
Because leukemia starts in the bone marrow and often has spread to other organs by the time it is detected, there is no need for traditional staging. All leukemias are classified according to their genotypes, or their unique chromosomal arrangements, which also enables the physicians to determine risk factors.
Stage 1 - there are enlarged lymph nodes in the first stage. The cancer has not spread to other organs of the body.
Stage 2 - the presence of enlarged spleen and liver along with lymph nodes can be seen in the second stage. Both liver and spleen may not get affected but at least one of them except lymph nodes will get affected.
Stage 3 - the development of anemia can be seen in third stage. Liver, spleen and lymph nodes may remain swollen. In the third stage of cancerous development, two or more organs are possibly to get affected.
Stage 4 - a drastic fall in blood platelets can be seen in this last stage of blood cancer. Lungs can also get affected in the last stage of cancerous development. Acute anemia is seen in this stage.
Diagnosis of Blood Cancer
A number of tests are performed for diagnosing blood cancer they include –
Treatment of Blood Cancer
Leukemia blood cancer treatment is very complex. The treatment of leukemia not only depends on its type but also depends on the factors such as whether any leukemia treatment has been done before, leukemia cells and the extent of the disease. The treatment also depends on other factors such as general health, symptoms and age of a patient. There are three options of blood cancer treatment that include -
Biological Therapy - Biological therapy assists the body as it fights off the cancer on its own. It helps to strengthen the body’s natural cancer-fighting processes. Biological therapy may cause some side effects, but other medications can be used to treat these. Side effects often vary from person to person.
Chemotherapy - chemotherapy uses chemicals to fight the cancer. It can be taken by mouth or injected into a vein. Sometimes it is injected into the spinal fluid. The drugs used in chemotherapy kill the cancer cells but can also damage regular, healthy cells. The damage to the healthy cells is what causes so many side effects. Side effects from chemotherapy may include:
Radiotherapy - radiotherapy, also known as radiation therapy. In radiation therapy, a beam of high-energy rays is directed towards the cancer, or over the entire body. The rays kill the cancer cells. Side effects vary depending on how much radiation is received and what part of the body it is directed towards. Most side effects are temporary and can be managed with medication.
Induction Therapy - induction therapy is a combination of chemotherapy, targeted therapy, and steroids.
Stem Cell Transplantation - because chemotherapy and radiation therapy can end up killing off healthy blood cells, patients may receive a stem cell transplant. A stem cell transplant allows the patient’s body to develop new, healthy blood cells. The transplanted stem cells may come from the patient or someone who donates them to the patient. Patients who receive a stem cell transplant often must stay in the hospital for a long period of time because they may get sick easily. They must also be monitored to make sure their body will not fight against the new stem cells.
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