Leukemia can be described as an abnormal rise in the number of white blood cells. The white blood cells (WBC) gather out other blood cell components like the red blood cells and platelets. The risen white blood cells grow immaturely and do not function the right way. Leukemia, derived from the Greek words ‘white’ and ‘blood’, is commonly diagnosed among children, but surprisingly affects adults more. It is also more common in men than in women, especially of the Caucasian descent. More than 52,000 new patients are diagnosed with all different forms of leukemia with about 24,000 deaths every year. Blood comprises of three types of cells namely, the white blood cells that fight infection, oxygen carrying red blood cells, and platelets that help blood to clot. Every moment, billions of new blood cells are produced in the bone marrow, most of which are red cells. In people with leukemia, the body starts producing more white cells than it actually needs. Many of the extra cells do not mature normally, and tend to live well beyond their expected life span.
Despite being big in number, these cancerous cells become unable to fight infection the way normal white blood cells are ought to. As they mount up, they interfere with the functions of our vital organs, including the production of healthy blood cells. As a result, the body does not have enough red blood cells to supply oxygen, enough normal white blood cells to fight infection, or enough platelets to ensure proper clotting. This causes a person with leukemia become anemic as well as escalating the risks of bleeding, bruising, and infection. Cases of leukemia are often distinguished as acute or chronic. The cells in acute leukemia reproduce even before they develop beyond their immature stage. Chronic leukemia advance more slowly, with the leukemia cells developing to full maturity.
Leukemia can also be further classified according to the type of white blood cell involved, most commonly myeloid or lymphoid. The exact cause of leukemia remains unknown shrouding mystery around the disease. Certain chromosome abnormalities have also been associated with the spread leukemia, but not the cause of it. People suffering from chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) or having acute lymphocytic leukemia (ALL) have an abnormal chromosome in their white blood cells and bone marrow. With other types of leukemia, the chromosome abnormality is an acquired meaning, it is neither inherited nor passed on to the next generations. Genetic disorders associated with AML include Down syndrome, or immune deficiency disorders.
Knowing more about Leukemia is always less. It is important to choose an expert with wide clinical experience and thorough understanding of the patient’s situation. Indian Medguru Consultants is a medical tourism company in India extending excellent healthcare facilities, by helping international patients access the best oncology aid from the most renowned and most promising doctors and surgeons. Picking the right help is important as cancer can be fatal as well as curable, depending on your current condition and the support you are taking.
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