Munson Health
 
Leukemia -- Child

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by Wood D
 

Risk Factors

Factors that may increase a child's risk of leukemia include:
 

Symptoms

Common symptoms include:
These symptoms may be due to other conditions. If your child has any of these, talk to the doctor.
 

Treatment

Symptoms created by leukemia may need to be treated first. Treatment may include:
  • Antibiotics to treat infections
  • Blood transfusion to treat severe anemia or bleeding
Treatment that targets the leukemia itself may one or a combination of the treatments below:

Chemotherapy

Chemotherapy is the use of drugs to kill cancer cells. The drugs enter the bloodstream and travel through the body killing mostly cancer cells. May be used alone or with other treatments like radiation therapy.

Radiation Therapy

Radiation is directed to a specific area to kill the cancer cells. May be used alone or with chemotherapy.

Transplantation

High doses of radiation and/or chemotherapy can destroy immature healthy blood cells. Transplantation will help the body build healthy cells again. Transplant options may include bone marrow or stem cell transplantation.
In bone marrow transplantation , the marrow may be removed, treated to kill cancer cells, and frozen. After treatment, the bone marrow is placed back into the body. The marrow may also be provided from a healthy donor. The marrow with leukemia will be removed and the donated marrow will be delivered after treatment.
Peripheral blood stem cell transplantation uses immature cells that are found in the blood. These cells are removed from the blood before chemotherapy or radiation treatment. Once treatment is done, the stem cells are then placed back into the blood. The immature cells will grow into healthy white and red blood cells.

Other Treatments

  • Biological therapy uses medication or substances made by the body to increase the body’s natural ability to fight cancer.
  • Certain medication or therapies may also be used to help manage the side effects of treatment.
  • During treatment and recovery your child may need to take steps to avoid infections. Treatments and the cancer can weaken the immune system and make the child more vulnerable to bacteria and viruses.
 

RESOURCES

American Cancer Society
http://www.cancer.org/

Leukemia and Lymphoma Society
http://www.leukemia-lymphoma.org/

 

CANADIAN RESOURCES

Canadian Cancer Society
http://www.cancer.ca/

Team in Training
Leukemia and Lymphoma Society
http://www.teamintraining.ca/

 

References


Acute lymphoblastic leukemia. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed/what.php . Updated May 17, 2013. Accessed June 19, 2013.


Acute lymphoblastic leukemia. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed/what.php . Updated June 17, 2013. Accessed June 19, 2013.


Childhood Acute lymphoblastic leukemia Treatment. National Cancer Institute website. Available at: http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/pdq/treatment/childALL/patient/ . Updated March 6, 2013. Accessed June 19, 2013.


Childhood Acute myeloid leukemia Treatment. National Cancer Institute website. Available at: http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/pdq/treatment/childALL/patient/ . Updated April 4, 2013. Accessed June 19, 2013.


Leukemia. Leukemia and Lymphoma Society website. Available at: http://www.lls.org/diseaseinformation/leukemia/ . Accessed June 19, 2013.


Leukemia. Lucile Packard Children's Hospital at Standford website. Available at: http://www.lpch.org/DiseaseHealthInfo/HealthLibrary/oncology/leukemia.html . Accessed June 19, 2013.

 

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