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Word Count: 290
The leukemias are cancers of the blood forming cells Acute leukemia involves the most primitive of these types of cells This class of cancer leads to an overproduction of a blood cells that have similar characteristics clones Clonal cells share two common features that lead to the symptoms of leukemia 1 The cells divide without control and fail to respond to the signals that tell them to stop 2 These cells have a longer life than normal cells and gradually accumulate in the bone marrow This uncontrolled production of long lived cells leads to the replacement of the normal cells in the bone marrow with leukemic clones Since the space is limited in the marrow the normal cells are crowded out by these clones All the normal blood forming elements are eventually affected if the leukemia goes unchecked So that the white cells infection fighters platelets clot forming cells and red blood cells oxygen carrying cells are all eventually depleted The lower number of normal white blood cells makes leukemic patients more vulnerable to infection The depletion of normal platelets interferes with the patients clotting ability and makes the patient more susceptible to abnormal bleeding and bruising Anemia is caused by the decreased production of normal red blood cells Leukemic cells are actually abnormal white blood cells As these cells proliferate they increase the concentration of white blood cells in the blood stream The term leukemia actually has a latin derivation Leuko means white and heme is blood Therefore the word leukemia literally means white blood Now you understand why INFECTIONS ANEMIA AND EASY BRUSING ARE THE HALLMARKS OF LEUKEMIA Other features include enlarged spleen liver and lymph nodes The enlargement of these organs is caused by leukemic infiltration of these structures
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