Leukemia in children is a common cancer type that affects the white blood cells. The malignant white blood cells travel through the bloodstream crowding out healthy cells. This then causes serious immunological damage exposing the body to a variety of diseases.
Signs and symptoms of leukemia in children
- Fatigue- Anemia might make a child feel tired and weak. This is because of the abnormal blood. It may also cause pale skin.
- Fever- A child with leukemia may develop a fever which usually doesn’t go away very easily.
- Bleeding or bruising – mostly because the body’s red blood cells are unable to effectively heal the body after an injury. The healing process takes a lot more time than normal.
- Bone or joint pain – this is usually a common sign in children bellow five years.
- Loss of appetite and weight loss – the lack of proper body metabolism may cause loss of appetite and even when food is well administered; there is no sufficient breakdown of ingested food. This then leads to weight loss.
- Swollen lymph nodes – the lymphatic system may be interrupted and develop some swellings which may develop serious complications.
- Coughing and trouble in breathing – respiratory complications may easily develop and hinder proper gaseous exchange in the body.
- Swelling of the face and arms – this is mostly the major indicator of leukemia in children. It is called the Superior vena cava syndrome.
- Headache and seizures – mostly due to the unhealthy state of the body and lack of enough blood circulating in the body. The body is struggling to keep the body functions at par with each other.
- Rashes and tooth gum problems – Children with acute leukemia experience the leukemia cells spreading to the gums and cause swelling, pain, and bleeding. If they spread to the skin, small dark colored rashes develop.
There is no cure for leukemia except for a chemotherapy and prescription drugs. Sometimes even when a child comes from a long line of leukemia patients there is always a chance of not being a victim. Family and friend support is always important to help relieve the possible side effects of treatment.