Blood Cancer – the name is enough to give us sleepless nights isn’t it? Many of us even believe that Cancer means death which is certainly not the truth anymore. All thanks to the advancements in Blood Cancer therapy research that today a cancer patient can live a long life with proper treatment and awareness. For a successful treatment of cancer, cancer early symptoms or timely detection of the disease is crucial for which you need awareness. In this article, we will be focusing on blood cancer, its types and everything that you need to know about this disease for an early detection.
What is Blood Cancer?
Blood cancer is a disease that disrupts the production and function of your growth cells. These cancers usually start in bone marrow where the blood is produced. Stem cells which are present in bone marrow develop into three types of blood cells- red blood cells, white blood cells and platelets. In case of blood cancers the development process of normal blood cells get hampered by the growth of abnormal type of blood cells which eventually prevent blood from performing its essential functions like controlling excessive bleeding and fighting of infections.
Different Types of Blood Cancers
Blood cancers are mainly classified into three categories
- It is a type of blood cancer that is found in blood and bone marrow and triggered by a fast growth of abnormal white blood cells
- Such white blood cells fail to fight infection and damage the ability of bone marrow to produce red blood cells and platelets.
- It is a type of blood cancer that damages the lymphatic system which removes excess fluid from your body and produces immune cells.
- Lymphocytes effectively fight infection in your body
- Abnormal lymphocytes transform into lymphoma.
- Over time, these cancerous cells destroy your immune system
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- This type of blood cancer targets the plasma cells and damages it
- Plasma cells or white blood cells produce disease and infection fighting antibodies in your body
- Myeloma cells disrupt the normal production of antibodies and weaken your immune system
No matter how complicated the disease is, early detection does help. Early detection will only be possible if you are aware of the symptoms of the disease.
Here are some common symptoms of blood cancer
- Rapid weight loss
- Unexpected bleeding
- Continuous and recurrent infection
- Sudden rash and skin itchiness
- Bone, joints or abdominal pain
- Persistent tiredness that does not reduce even after taking sleep
- Pale complexion
- Breathlessness etc
If you have been expecting such symptoms or you think you have cancer then don’t wait to make it worse, consult with your doctor immediately.
Blood cancer staging
Like any other type of cancer, staging is a very important factor in blood cancer treatment. It is a process that identifies the spread and severity of the cancer. There are certain blood test for cancer that are initiated to recognize the staging.
Such tests include
- A thorough physical examination
- Blood tests
- Bone marrow tests
- Diagnostic imaging tests like Computed Tomography (CT) scan, Positron Emission Tomography (PET) scan and X ray
- Surgical lymph nodes removal
Staging enables your cancer care team to know the exact location, type and spread of your cancer.
Treatments of Blood Cancer
Blood cancer treatment in California completely depends on the type of cancer you have, your age, growth of the cancer, the areas where they have spread in your body etc. Some of the most common treatment for cancer are the following.
- Stem cell transplant
- Chemotherapy and
- Radiation therapy
Awareness is the only way to fight against a deadly disease like cancer. With the continuous improvements in medical science in Cancer treatment, we can all hope for the day when the term cancer will only be used to address a zodiac sign is not a disease.
The Cancer Research and Life foundation (crlfoundation.org) is unique in providing cancer patients with immediate help wherever they are in their cancer treatment experience, by providing education, guidance, and access to research-based treatments, diagnosis and beyond. Every patient who seeks our help, finds a meaningful resources, financial assistance, and solution to ease the journey.