Leukemia in children

Leukemia in children

Leukemia is cancer of the white blood cells in the blood. When a child has leukemia, large numbers of abnormal white blood cells are produced in the bone marrow.
These abnormal white blood cells stick around bone marrow and flow into the bloodstream, but they can not perform their function is to protect the body from disease because they are defective.
Due to the form of the blood disease, leukemia is a cancer especially since there is no concept of "tumor" in it. Although other types of cancer cells can circulate in the blood, but does not mean the cancer is spread to others through blood transfusion.

As leukemia progresses, the treatment will interfere with the ability to produce other forms of the body's blood cells, including red blood cells and platelets (small substances in the blood which helps the blood to clot ). Consequently, cause anemia and bleeding problems, increased risk of infection.
Leukemia accounts for about 25% of all childhood cancers and affect about 2,200 American children each year. Fortunately, the opportunity to treat the disease is now quite high. Once treated, most children are from the disease without relapse.

The form of leukemia in children

In general, leukemias are divided into two categories: acute (rapidly developing) and chronic (growing). In children, approximately 98% of cases of acute leukemia is.
Acute leukemia in children are divided into two types: acute lymphocytic leukemia (ALL) and acute myelogenous leukemia (AML), depending on the particular white blood cells called lymphyocytes, relevant relating to immunity.
About 60% of children with leukemia, ALL and AML is about 38%.
Chronic myelogenous leukemia (CML) can also occur in children, but rare.

The risk of leukemia in children

ALL the most common form of the disease in children aged 2-8 years, with the most vulnerable age is 4 years old. However, it can affect all age groups.

Children 20-25% risk of ALL and AML if they are identical twins, and was diagnosed with the disease before the age of 6. In twins, but not identical, and in children with siblings with leukemia, the risk is 2-4 times higher than other normal children.

Children with genetic problems such as Down syndrome, the Li-Fraumeni syndrome, Kleinfelter syndrome, neurofibromatosis, ataxia telangectasia or Fanconi anemia have a higher risk of leukemia.

Has the child ever been treated with chemotherapy or radiation due to suffering from other forms of cancer have a higher risk of leukemia, usually within the first 8 years after treatment.

The present study also showed that environmental factors can also lead to children with this disease.
To limit the risk of children affected by radiation during pregnancy, currently pregnant women often consult a doctor prior to the test or treatment related to radiation, such such as X-rays.

The test can often detect early signs of leukemia cases: young parents have genetic problems, a history of cancer treatment or use of special medication for organ transplantation.

Symptoms of leukemia

Do white blood cells fight disease impaired, children with leukemia may increase the risk of infections and fever. They can also lead to anemia pale, unusual fatigue and shortness of breath while playing.
Children with leukemia can also bruising and easy bleeding, frequent nosebleeds, unusual bleeding time long after injuring though very small.

Other symptoms of leukemia may include:

- Aching bones or joints, sometimes causing the child to limp
- Swollen lymph nodes in the neck, groin or elsewhere
- Feeling unusually tired
- Picky eaters
About 12% of children with AML patients and 6% of children with leukemia ALL spread to the brain and cause headaches, seizures, balance problems and visual abnormalities. If ALL spread to the lymph nodes in the chest, it can surround the trachea and major blood vessels leading to respiratory problems and affect the blood flow to and from the heart.
Therefore, the detection of children with unusual symptoms, parents should quickly take their children to the doctor to be tested early and appropriate therapy.