When you hear about blood cancer, it is at first difficult to figure out how that works. In most cases, people are used to relating cancer with solid tumors. But not all cancers behave like solid tumors, and blood cancer (leukemia) is one example.
Leukemia is a very complex disease, and it can be a mild problem found by mistake in a blood exam or a severe condition with bleeding and many consequences on the short-term. Thus, diagnosis and treatment options are different depending on each type, and we should know at least the basics about leukemia to understand what doctors decide and recommend.
Go on reading if you recently received a diagnosis or your child was diagnosed with leukemia, or if you simply need some information about the disease. In this article, we’re covering everything you need to know about this disease, including what exactly it is, its types, causes, symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment.
What Is Leukemia?
To make it short, leukemia is blood cancer, but there are many types and subtypes. Thus, we can say it is a series of neoplasms that grow in stem cells located in the bone marrow. The same stem cells that produce white blood cells. So, we have malignant stem cells producing more white blood cells than the body needs, and the white blood cell count increases very rapidly.
Leukemia is not solid cancer, and it does not necessarily involve masses that take up extra space in a given cavity or organ. They should be differentiated from lymphomas, which are tumors that grow in the lymph nodes. However, it is essential to note that leukemia can sometimes lead to lymphoma, even if they are separate entities.