Leukemia

What is leukemia :

Is a group of cancers that usually begin in the bone marrow and result in high numbers of abnormal white blood cells.These white blood cells are not fully developed and are called blasts or leukemia cells.

Types of leukemia : 

  • ALL : acute lymphoblastic leukemia 

  • AML : acute myelogenous leukemia or myeloblastic

  • CLL : chronic lymphocytic leukemia 

  • CML : chronic myelogenous leukemia 

  • Hairy cell leukemia 

Manifestations :  

 ANT – liver-spleen-bone 

  • Fever 

  • Bone tenderness 

  • Infection 

  • Bruises

  • Swelling and bleeding from the gum 

  • Hepatosplenomegally

  • Lymphadenopathy

Investigations :

  • In ALL : increase WBCs > 100000 and increase lymphoblast

  • In AML : increase WBCs > 100000 and increase myeloblast 

  • In CML : WBCs > 100000 and increase , increase uric acid and LDH and vitamin B12 and presence of philadelphia 

  • In CLL : lymphocytosis , granulocytopenia , anemia , thrombocytopenia , hypogammaglobulinemia 

  • In hairy cell leukemia : TRAP ( tartrate resistant acid phosphatase ) staining of hairy cells , leukopenia 

Treatment : 

  • ALL and AML : allopurinol 

  • CLL :chemotherapy , may be radiotherapy 

  • CML : imatinib + stem cell transplantation 

  • Hairy cell leukemia : nucleoside analogs ( cladribine) 

  • By Dr. Mustafa Aljubbawy



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Haitham Ahmed, MD

Haitham Ahmed, MD, MPH, is a preventive cardiologist in the Robert and Suzanne Tomsich Department