Leukemia (or blood cancer) is cancer that usually affects white blood cells, but there are rarer cancers that affect red blood cells and platelets. It usually begins with a defect in the creation of blood components in the bone marrow. These cells affected by malformation, or leukemia cells, proliferate and their number becomes greater than that of healthy cells, which hinders the functioning of the latter.
Different forms of leukemia
Leukemia is divided into several types depending on the forms of the disease. It can be classified according to its evolution and speed of progression (chronic or acute). Or depending on the origin of the disease, that is to say the cells of the bone marrow where it develops (lymphoid or myeloid).
This is the form where the disease progresses at high speed and the complications quickly become dangerous. Deformed blood cells called blasts do not function normally and reproduce quickly causing leukemia to develop rapidly, hence the name acute leukemia.
Chronic leukemia is a form that mainly affects adults. Leukemia cells are more mature and therefore multiply more slowly and perform their functions for a period of time. This form of the disease can sometimes go undetected for several years.
Myeloid leukemia (acute AML and chronic CML)
This form of blood cancer affects blood cells in the bone marrow, especially white blood cells called granulocytes. This results in the creation of abnormal white blood cells called myeloblasts (hence the name myeloid leukemia). There are two types of myeloid leukemia:
- Acute myeloid leukemia (AML).
- Chronic myeloid (myelocytic or granular) leukemia (CML).
Lymphoid or lymphoblastic leukemia
Lymphoblastic leukemia affects white blood cells which play a vital role in the immune system called lymphocytes. Affected and failing lymphocytes are called lymphoblasts. Like myeloid leukemia, this form of the disease is divided into two types:
- Acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL).
- Chronic lymphoblastic leukemia (CLL).
Symptoms of blood cancer
There are no symptoms specific to blood cancer. However, when certain signs appear often and persist, the patient will need to have medical examinations. Among these signs we find:
- Repeated infections.
Fatigue can hide anemia, which is a result of weakened red blood cells. For repeated infections that are not easy to treat, this may be a sign of the replacement of white blood cells with cancer cells. As for the bleeding, it is due to the decrease in the number of platelets caused by leukemia.
How is the disease diagnosed?
The diagnosis of leukemia is usually made through two main examinations. If the above symptoms persist or even worsen, your doctor will advise you to have a blood test first.
The blood test can see if the levels of blood components (white blood cells, red blood cells, platelets) are abnormal. In case of worrying results, a bone marrow biopsy will be performed. Also called myelogram, this sample is used to analyze leukemia cells in order to establish the appropriate treatment.
Blood cancer treatment in Istanbul
Treatment of blood cancer in Istanbul is very delicate, as it aims to eradicate leukemia cells without affecting healthy cells. In addition, treatment depends on several factors such as the age or state of health of the patient. This is why several techniques are used, including chemotherapy and bone marrow transplantation.
This treatment aims to inject chemicals into the patient's body so that they destroy leukemia cells and allow healthy cells to be produced. The use of different anticancer drugs is required. Two types of chemotherapy are used:
- Intensive chemotherapy.
- Non-intensive chemotherapy.
Bone marrow transplant
After undergoing chemotherapy treatment, the patient receives a bone marrow transplant to replace the destroyed cells. The purpose of the transplant is also to allow the bone marrow to reform so that it creates healthy blood components. Bone marrow transplantation cannot be done for people over 55 years old.
Other treatments may be used for leukemia depending on the patient's case. Among these treatments:
- Targeted therapy or immunotherapy.
- Supportive treatment.
Side effects of treatments
Treatments for leukemia and especially chemotherapy can have serious consequences on the patient's body. Among these side effects are:
- Hair loss.
- Fatigue and lack of energy.
- Loss of appetite.
To deal with these side effects, there are medications available to help patients recover.
Leukemia Treatment in Turkey: Prices & Reviews
As with other cancers, our clinics and hospitals in Turkey have the best oncologists to provide you with the best care. In addition to offering you the best care, our clinics also offer the lowest prices for the treatment of leukemia and blood cancer. In addition, we assure you full support during your stay.
To know the price of your treatment and your coverage, a personalized quote is offered to you as well as a free consultation for a medical opinion from the link below.
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