Are you wondering how you can help your loved ones fight against leukemia?
The noble intent can be fulfilled by gaining ample knowledge about your enemy, i.e., leukemia. This will increase your readiness to navigate and win your fight against Leukemia. First and foremost, you must know how does leukemia affect the body.
Leukemia, being a severe disease, affects different parts of the body. Due to the rapid spread, cancer will start impacting other body parts.
The best way to fight Leukemia is to diagnose it at the early stages. The survival rates of leukemia treatment are very high in the early stages of cancer.
The faster you act, the better you can help your loved ones to win the battle against Leukemia.
This information will help you to identify and act fast to initiate the proper steps for treatment.
Let’s now understand how does leukemia affect the body.
Leukemia is a form of cancer affecting the body’s lymphatic system (a network of vessels, nodes, and ducts that collect and circulate excess fluid in the body) and bone marrow tissues, which produce blood.
Most leukemia types prevent producing healthy white blood cells, which are crucial to fighting infections. These WBC continuously multiply, fight infections, and eventually die off. Leukemia attacks this typical lifecycle of white blood cells.
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How does leukemia affect the bones?
You may experience pain in the bone due to the growth of cancer cells in the bone marrow. The sternum (breastbone), ribs, and long bones of the arms and legs are where people experience this pain the most frequently.
Sometimes a mass of cancer cells that have formed close to the spinal cord’s nerves may cause a person to feel pain.
Very rarely, leukemia can weaken bones to the point where they fracture. This is more typical in bones that support weight, such as the:
How does leukemia affect your bone marrow?
Your bone marrow, where white blood cells are made, is where leukemia can begin. In your bone marrow, immature, cancerous white blood cells outnumber healthy ones. Joint and bone pain can result from this.
Without treatment, leukemia can also result in bone marrow failure, a condition with many of the same symptoms as leukemia, such as:
- Unexplained bruising
- Easy bleeding
How does leukemia affect the heart?
Cancer cells may invade blood vessels in leukemia, leading to ischemic cardiac disease, also known as coronary artery disease (CAD), and other related problems. In this situation, the heart does not get enough blood and oxygen.
How does leukemia affect the digestive system?
Although it is uncommon, some leukemias can impact the digestive system. For instance, 5.7–13% of people with chronic lymphocytic leukemia experience gastrointestinal symptoms.
Your liver and spleen can also become a place for leukemia cells. This might make you feel bloated and full, which will make it challenging for you to eat.
Injuries or lesions caused by leukemia can develop in the proximal colon, ileum (last part of the small intestine), and stomach. Infection, bleeding, or inflammation of the intestinal tissues can make these conditions extremely serious or even lethal.
How does leukemia affect your respiratory system?
When you have leukemia, you might feel short of breath.
This may occur if you don’t have enough healthy blood cells to provide your body with the oxygen it requires. Your body may try to compensate for this lack of oxygenated cells by taking shallow or hurried breaths.
Your thymus gland may develop a circle of leukemia cells if you have T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia. This immune system organ, which is located beneath your breast bone, is a gland.
It can be challenging to breathe if cancer cells collect around this gland. You might wheeze, cough, or find it difficult to breathe.
How does leukemia affect the immune system?
White Blood Cells (WBC) play an important role in the function of the immune system. They are in charge of defending the body against illnesses and infections.
WBCs are typically impacted by leukemia, which causes the bone marrow to produce abnormal WBCs that are less able to fight infections than normal. This weakens the immune system, increasing the body’s vulnerability to severe conditions and diseases.
How does leukemia affect a person’s daily life?
Living with a severe disease like leukemia can be very stressful, and managing treatments, hospital stays, and being away from loved ones can be very challenging.
Your family may go through distressing thoughts and feelings.
The physical and mental health of a patient can be impacted by leukemia.
Leukemia patients aspire for emotional or practical support from family and support groups.
Moreover, support from friends and family is also essential for enhancing a person’s quality of life.
We recommend you read the article on how to deal with cancer emotionally and psychologically by clicking the button below.
Conclusion – how does leukemia affect the body
It is very important to diagnose leukemia as early as possible and start the treatment. This is the sure-shot way to win the battle against Leukemia.
You should keep a vigilant eye on the developments as mentioned earlier and start the treatment with an experienced oncologist team.
You must also know that Leukemia’s advanced and curative treatment is a bone marrow transplant. You should read more on this curative form of treatment for leukemia.
Please visit the bone marrow transplant page for more information.
You may also like to take help from the MedicoExperts Tumor board to suggest the right treatment plan.
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