Leukemia and lymphoma are hematologic cancers, meaning they are cancers of the blood and bone marrow. In patients with leukemia, the abnormal production of white blood cells in bone marrow inhibits the bone marrow’s ability to produce red blood cells and platelets. Lymphoma, a blood cancer that impacts the lymph system, affects the body’s ability to fight infection and disease. While once thought incurable, recent advances in medicine have made lymphoma a treatable condition.
What are the risk factors and symptoms of leukemia?
Risk factors for leukemia and lymphoma include:
- Previous treatment for cancer
- Genetic disorders, such as Down syndrome
- Exposure to some chemicals
- Family history
Symptoms experienced include:
- Persistent weakness and fatigue
- Fever or chills
- Bone tenderness or pain
- Excessive sweating
- Recurring nosebleeds
- Easy bruising or bleeding
- Unexplained weight loss
- Pain in lymph nodes
How do you diagnose leukemia?
While there are no standard screening processes for leukemia and lymphoma, your doctor may diagnose these conditions by performing certain exams and tests, including:
- Physical exam
- Blood tests
- Bone marrow test
What are the treatment options for leukemia?
Your course of treatment depends on many factors, including your age and general health. Together, you and your doctor and the team of experts at St. Luke’s Health can determine the right course of treatment for you. This could include:
- Radiation therapy
- Stem cell transplant
- Targeted therapy
- Biological therapy