General characteristics of the disease
Blood cancer, leukemia, or leukemia - is a group of cancer clonal hematopoiesis nature. Blood cancer develops due to mutations in bone marrow cells and the gradual replacement of healthy brain tissue.
Deficiency of healthy cells hematopoiesis leads to typical signs of blood cancer: cytopenia (reduction in white blood cells or platelets), anemia, increased tendency of the organism to hemorrhage and infection.
Tumor cells of blood cancer, as in other oncological diseases, can spread in the body, affects the lymph nodes and organs. Most often in the later stages of blood cancer metastases penetrate into the liver and spleen, and then to other organs. When vnekostnomozgovyh peripheral forms of blood cancer in the first place is suffering from metastatic bone marrow.
One of the main reasons why mutations hematopoietic cells is considered to be carcinogenic influence of ionizing radiation. Mass phenomena signs of blood cancer were observed in the post-war Japan, as well as the residents of Chernobyl. To the development of cancer of the blood can lead exposure during the treatment of Hodgkin's disease (cancer of the lymphoid tissues). One of the factors causing a blood cancer, and viral considered chemical mutagens: benzene, cytostatics, etc.
Symptoms of blood cancer
The initial stage of blood cancer, as well as most other cancers, occurs practically asymptomatic. Early symptoms of blood cancer rank as many somatic symptoms: fatigue, insomnia or drowsiness, memory impairment caused by poor blood supply to the brain. One sign of cancer of the blood is also considered bad zazhivlyaemost wounds, their tendency to fester.
Patients with blood cancers are often pale, they have pronounced shadows under the eyes. Patients with blood cancer suffer from nosebleeds, frequent colds and other infectious diseases. Additional symptoms of blood cancer include fever to subfebrile figures, swollen lymph nodes, and liver and spleen.
Hematologic signs of blood cancer are set on the basis of laboratory analyzes the patient's blood.
Diagnosis of blood cancer
The patient complained of a general deterioration of health, with enlarged lymph nodes, liver and spleen sent for putting the general and detailed analysis of the blood. Possible symptoms of hematologic cancer of the blood are reduced level of white blood cells, platelets, hemoglobin and found in the blood of immature blast cells.
The type depends on a modified hematopoietic cells form of blood cancer. It is set in the last stage of diagnosis of blood cancer - bone marrow biopsy. Typically a sample of soft tissue of the bone marrow is taken from the pelvic bone in the region of the lower back.
Chest X-ray, CT scan of the head and abdomen to help determine the degree of spread of metastatic cancer of the blood.
The forms of blood cancer
The traditional classification of disease refers to the separation of blood cancer in two basic forms: acute and chronic leukemia. The acute form of blood cancer characterized by a large number of immature cells that afflict normal hematopoiesis. A symptom of the chronic form of blood cancer is considered to be the predominance of granulocytes or granular leukocytes, gradually replacing healthy blood-forming cells.
Acute and chronic forms of blood cancer - two separate hematological diseases. Unlike other diseases acute blood cancer can not develop into a chronic form of leukemia, and chronic blood cancer can not "escalate".
Stages of cancer of the blood
During the acute form of leukemia distinguish several stages of blood cancer. The initial stage of blood cancer characterized by normal or only slightly altered parameters of the blood, general malaise, and worsening of chronic infections. The initial stage of the acute form of blood cancer is diagnosed only in retrospect, when her period ends and the disease goes into the next phase.
For Advanced stage blood cancer characterized by a pronounced change in the composition of blood. After treatment, blood cancer Unfolded stage flows into remission (no blast cells in the blood of a patient within 5 years) or at the terminal stage of cancer blood. When it is observed complete inhibition of the hematopoietic system.
Stage blood cancer chronic forms have their own specifics. The initial stage of a cancer or blood monoklonovaya proceeds without any external symptoms and diagnosed with prophylactic examinations often accidentally or during studies of blood due to another disease. At this stage, blood cancer diagnosed increased amount of granular leukocytes. Their excess is removed by leukophoresis, and the disease can occur for years.
In the second stage of chronic forms of blood cancer or polyclonal patient phase formation of secondary tumors. Their appearance is accompanied by a rapid increase in the number of blast hematopoietic cells, so the disease becomes very heavy stage blood cancer complications in the form of generalized lymph node, a significant increase in liver and spleen.
Blood cancer in children
The most common form of blood cancer in children - acute lymphoblastic leukemia. It occurs in 80% of all cases diagnosed blood cancer in children and approximately one-third of all children's cancers. Peak incidence is observed in leukemia patients 2-5 years. A higher probability of cancer of the blood in children with chromosomal abnormalities, as well as in young patients undergoing ionizing radiation in utero or early childhood.
There is also a hypothesis about the impact of the transferred infectious diseases on the probability of developing cancer of the blood in children and another theory about the possible prenatal origin of childhood leukemia. This fact is explained by the early manifestation signs of blood cancer in children.
Treatment of blood cancer
The main method of treatment of blood cancer - chemotherapy with cytotoxic drugs. The duration of chemotherapy treatment of blood cancer is on average 2 years 6 months of hospital and outpatient care and a half years. Blood cancer at an early stage - the most difficult period of therapy for the patient. During the first weeks the patients underwent continuous intravenous infusion.
At the stage of tumor lysis treatment of blood cancer continues to completion of platelets and red blood cells of donor blood. The entire period of hospital treatment of blood cancer observed strict sanitary regime with a maximum guard the patient from contact with the outside world. This need is caused by a lack of immune protection of the patient due to the massive destruction of the white blood cells.
After remission, further treatment of blood cancer is aimed at consolidating the results. If necessary, a few weeks after recovery of blood cancer patients undergoing radiation therapy of brain region.
At relapse of the disease blood cancer treatment protocol involves the direction of the patient's bone marrow transplantation. His donor may be a relative or a compatible blood people. The higher the percentage of matching scale HLA, more optimistic prognosis of treatment of blood cancer.
Forecast treat blood cancer in children most favorable: infant leukemia successfully cured more than 70% of cases. The factors that positively influence the outcome of the treatment of blood cancer in children include early detection of the disease, the small size of the tumor mass and minimal lymph node involvement.