LeukemiaWhat is Leukemia and How Does it Affect Cell Growth? Leukemia is cancer of the blood, bone marrow, central nervous system, circulatory system, respiratory system, digestive system, and lymphatic system. There are many types of leukemia which are found in both children and adults, most commonly acute and chronic. Leukemia usually involves the white blood cells, which fight infection. Leukemia is often detected in organs such as the liver or spleen. It produces white blood cells that do not function properly. These white blood cells grow at a faster rate than normal cells, crowding out the normal cells. Leukemia is often caused by mutated CEBPA genes passed down through generations. People with this gene will have a shortage in white blood cells, which can lead to an increase in infections.PreventionGenetic screenings are one of the few ways you can help prevent leukemia since they detect any changes in an individual’s chromosomes, genes, or proteins.You could also make an effort to avoid cancer causing chemicals such as benzene, beryllium, arsenic, and more.Avoid engaging in activities such as smoking which can expose you and your body to harmful substances.Some cancers in the early stages could be treated without chemotherapy, so you might want to consider other treatments.Prognosis Leukemia often occurs in individuals older than 55 years old and children younger than 15. The prognosis for leukemia is heavily dependent on the type of blood cell affected and the patient’s age.Survival rates:Chronic Myeloid Leukemia: 66%Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia: 83%Acute Myeloid Leukemia: 27% overall & 64% in childrenAcute Lymphocytic Leukemia: 71% overall & 90% in childrenPossible Causes & PreventionCausesExposure to large amounts of radiation-This is an environmental factor and can be caused by exposure to x-rays or gamma rays, nuclear power plant accidents, and weapons.After having chemotherapy on another cancer. -This is an environmental and health factor that many people can’t control.Being genetically predisposed to developing leukemia.-Some individuals have it coded in their genes that they are likelier to develop leukemia later on in their lives than others.Exposure to cancer causing chemicals.-Benzene, arsenic, and beryllium are only a few of the chemicals that can potentially cause leukemia.Diagnosis & SymptomsBlood tests- Doctors will take a sample of your blood and look at your red and white blood cell count.Bone marrow tests- Doctors will remove a sample of your bone marrow from your hipbone with a needle, which will be sent to the lab to be searched for leukemia cells.Physical exams- Doctors will look for pale skin from anemia, swelling lymph nodes, and enlargement of your liver or spleen.CT scan- These are used to determine whether you have cancer and how much the tumor has spread. Short Term SymptomsMild feverSwollen gumsProlonged bleeding from minor cutsLoss of appetite Long Term SymptomsEnlarged spleenEnlarged liverDiscomfort in bones or joints Sources Usedhttps://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/142595.phphttps://www.webmd.com/cancer/tc/leukemia-home-treatmenthttps://www.lls.org/leukemia/acute-myeloid-leukemia/signs-and-symptomshttps://www.cancer.org/cancer/acute-lymphocytic-leukemia/causes-risks-prevention/prevention.htmlhttps://www.medicinenet.com/leukemia/article.htmhttp://www.kucancercenter.org/cancer-information/specialties-and-treatment/leukemia/preventionhttps://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/leukemia/basics/definition/con-20024914 TreatmentShort Term TreatmentsBiological Therapy- This is when vaccines or certain types of bacteria are used to trigger the body’s immune system to act against cancer cells, this also encourages apoptosis.Blood Transfusions- These use healthy volunteers’ blood to replace certain blood components.Healthy Habits- You could improve your eating habits and get enough sleep.Splenectomy- The doctor will remove your spleen if it becomes enlarged due to chronic lymphocytic leukemia.Long Term TreatmentsChemotherapy- This is when doctors use potent drugs or chemicals in combinations or intervals to kill cancer cells, encouraging apoptosis. Stem Cell Transplantation- This is when doctors replace cells damaged by cancer. Doctors will usually pair this with a second phase of chemotherapy.Clinical Trials- This involves therapy with new drugs and drug combinations or a new approach to stem cell transplantation.Targeted Therapy- This uses drugs that attack certain vulnerabilities in cancer cells, which usually targets cyclin-dependent kinases.