Symptoms and signs of Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia
The symptoms of Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL) tend to resemble other medical conditions. Each individual may experience the symptoms differently.
Symptoms of Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL) can be general symptoms or symptoms due to problems with immature blood cells.
The general symptoms are similar to that of an attack of viral flu that keeps coming back. These include:
- Frequent Fever
- Frequent infections
- Loss of appetite
- Weight loss In ALL there is an increased production of immature lymphocytes and decreased production of red blood cells, white blood cells and platelets.
Red blood cells are responsible for carrying oxygen from the lungs to the cells of the body and a shortage of these cells can lead to:
- Decreased hemoglobin resulting in anemia
- Shortness of breath,
- Pallor or Pale skin.White blood cells are responsible for providing immunity and fighting infections. Their shortage subjects a person to frequent infections that manifests itself as boils, abscess or flu- like symptoms.
Platelets help in blood clotting by plugging the bleeding area. Shortage of platelets leads to:
- Gum bleeds
- Nose bleeds
- Bleeding under the skin that appears as tiny red marks (petechiae). If the central nervous system is affected, an individual may experience:
- Blurred vision.
If a gland, located in the chest, called thymus is involved it can press against the windpipe and cause:
- Shortness of breath.
Signs of Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia
The signs that may give clue to the diagnosis of this condition includes:
- Painless lumps in the neck, underarm or groin.
- Pain below the ribs on left side, due an enlarged spleen
- Joint pains due to swelling, bleeding or weakness.
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