Leukemia is a broad term of blood cancer caused by the overproduction of the abnormal white blood cells. Patients with Leukemia will easily get infection, feel exhausted, and have bleeding disorder like bleeding gums or bruises on the skin. 

Leukemia can be classified into 2 types, depending on the blood cell that becomes cancer.

  • Myeloid Leukemia: Cancer that begins from the overproduction of the myeloid cells in the bone marrow and then spreads to the blood.
  • Lymphoid Leukemia: Cancer that begins in lymphocytes (A white blood cell that plays a role in the immune system) in the bone marrow and extends into the blood. 

Both types of leukemia can be acute or chronic. Typically, it can be detected by a blood test or genetic cancer screening. 

There are 3 treatment methods for leukemia, which are the following treatments:

  • Chemotherapy: It is an anti-cancer drug that uses powerful chemicals to kill cancer cells. It comes in the form of pill and injection. Chemotherapy is a primary treatment for acute leukemia. However, it might create some side effects on other cells causing diarrhea, mouth sores, and anemia.
  • Targeted Therapy: It is an anti-cancer drug that targets the cancer cells, it will not cause any damages to other healthy cells. For example, a tyrosine kinase inhibitor is a drug that inhibits tyrosine kinases, it is typically used to treat chronic myeloid leukemia. 
  • Stem Cell Transplantation: This treatment method is used to prevent and reduce the risk of recurrence. In this procedure, the oncologist uses the blood-forming cells or bone marrow of the patient, a relative, or a donor to infuse into the patient’s bloodstream. The patient receives healthy stem cells to replace damaged stem cells (leukemia cells).

For more information, kindly contact Cancer Center, 3rd Fl., Vejthani Hospital or call +66(0)2-734-0000 ext. 2200, 2204.

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