Leukemia is a malignant disease of blood or bone marrow that characterized by an anomalous increase of immature white blood cell called “blasts.” Leukemia covers a wide range of diseases. It also belongs to a broader group of diseases that affect blood, bone marrow and lymphatic system.
Leukemia susceptible people at any age. About 90 % of all leukemias are diagnosed in adults.
For each specific type of disease we select a narrow field haematologist, which makes the most effective treatment and help improve the life quality of our patients.
If you or any of your relatives were diagnosed with such disease, please contact us. We accept patients for the treatment of all disease stages, any kind of tumor location and malignancies in the body.
We provide examination program focused on your problem, according to which, you will clearly understand before coming to Israel, on what day and at what time you scheduled for a consultation and procedures.
Primarily allocate the acute and chronic forms of leukemia:
Acute leukemia is characterized by proliferation of immature blood cells. Extruded such cells, bone marrow unable to produce healthy blood cells. In this form of leukemia requires immediate treatment due to the rapid progression and accumulation malignant cells in the bone marrow as they are with fast speed can spread to other organs. Acute forms of leukemia the most common in children.
Chronic leukemia is characterized by excessive buildup of relatively mature, but still abnormal white blood cells. This process usually develops months or years. While acute leukemia requires immediate treatment, chronic forms are sometimes monitored for some time before treatment to ensure maximum effect of therapy. Chronic leukemia mostly occurs in older people, but can theoretically happen at any age.
By type of cells from which they are formed the disease is divided into:
Lymphoblastic leukemia (lymphocytic leukemia) and myeloid leukemia (leukemia)
When a change occurs lymphoblastic leukemia cells involved in the formation of the lymphocytes the cells that are intended to combat the infection are cells of the immune system. Most lymphocytic leukemias include subtypes of lymphocytes, B cells.
When a change occurs myeloid leukemia cells from bone marrow which are involved in the formation of red blood cells, some other types of white cells, and platelets.
The combination of these two types of disease into the following:
Acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) is the most common type of leukemia in young children . This disease also affects adults , especially those aged 65 years and older . Standard treatments include chemotherapy and radiation therapy. Survival depends on age: 85 % of children and 50 % of adults.
Chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) most often affects people over 55 years old. It sometimes occurs in younger age, but almost never affects children. Two-thirds of victims are male. Five-year survival is 75%. This form of the disease is incurable, but there are many effective treatments.
Acute myeloid leukemia (AML) is more common in adults than in children, more common in men than women. AML treated by chemotherapy. Five-year survival is 40 %, except for APL, which is over 90%. Subtypes of AML include acute promyelocytic leukemia, acute myeloid leukemia and acute megakaryoblastic leukemia.
Chronic myelogenous leukemia (CML) occurs mainly in adults; very small number of children. Chemotherapeutic treatment. Five-year survival is 90%.
Hairy cell leukemia (HCL) is sometimes seen as a type of chronic lymphocytic leukemia. About 80 % of people affected adult male. HCL incurable, but it is easy to control. Survival of 96 % to 100% within ten years.
T- cell leukemia prolymphocytic (T-PLL) is a very rare and aggressive kind of leukemia that affects adults, more men than women. Despite the rarity, it is also the most common type of mature T – cells. This type of disease is very difficult to treat, and survival is measured in months.
Big granular lymphocytic leukemia may be associated with either T cells or NK cells with. This is a rare and aggressive form of leukemia.
T cell leukemia caused by T- lymphotropic virus infection (HTLV), a virus similar to HIV. Like HIV , HTLV infects CD4 + T cells, and replicated in them, however, in contrast to HIV, do not destroy them. Instead, HTLV «immortalizes” the infected T cells, contributing to their abnormal proliferation.
Common symptoms of chronic or acute leukemia
Damage to bone marrow cells by replacement of normal bone marrow cells with a higher number of immature leukocytes leads to a lack of blood platelets, which play an important role in blood clotting. This means that in patients with leukemia blue spots appear on the skin or bruising, anemia, frequent infections (infected tonsils, mouth ulcers, diarrhea, or a life-threatening pneumonia), shortness of breath, paleness. Some patients experience symptoms such as nausea, fever, chills, night sweats, fatigue, and other flu-like symptoms. Some patients experience nausea or a feeling of fullness due to an enlarged liver and spleen, which can lead to unintentional weight loss.
If the leukemic cells invade the central nervous system, it may experience headaches, migraine headaches, convulsions, and coma if pressure on brainstem. But all of these symptoms can be tied with other diseases. Consequently leukemia should always be diagnosed by medical tests.
Leukemia as well as other types of cancer are the result of mutations in the DNA. Some mutations can cause leukemia by activation of oncogenes or off of tumor suppressor genes and thus dysregulation of cell death, differentiation and division. These mutations may occur spontaneously or as a result of irradiation or exposure to carcinogens. Tobacco use is associated with a small risk of developing acute myeloid leukemia in adults. Studies also indicate a relationship between the development of the disease with exposure to certain petroleum products and hair dyes.
Some people have a genetic predisposition to the development of leukemia. This usually indicates a predisposition family history. People with chromosomal abnormalities and other genetic diseases are at greater risk of developing leukemia. For example, people with Down syndrome have a significantly increased risk of developing forms of acute leukemia (especially acute myeloid leukemia), Fanconi anemia.
The diagnosis is usually based comprehensive analysis of the blood and bone marrow, in rare cases, blood tests may not show the presence of leukemia. Typically, this occurs because leukemia at early stages or in remission. For the diagnosis of certain types of leukemia in certain situations produced lymph node biopsy.
Sometimes visible damage doctors may use X-rays, MRI or ultrasound. This visual diagnosis can determine the impact of leukemia on body parts such as bones (X-ray ), the brain (MRI), or kidney, spleen and liver (ultrasound). Sometimes checking thoracic lymph nodes used CT.
Leukemia is a curable disease The polymerization rate is dependent on the type of leukemia, as well as the patient’s age. Children are more likely to be cured than adults. Even when complete cure unlikely most people with chronic leukemia and many people with acute leukemia can be treated successfully for many years.
Most forms of leukemia are treated with drugs that are usually combined in a multidrug chemotherapy with hormonal therapy. Sometimes radiation therapy is used. In some cases – bone marrow transplantation.
Treatment of acute leukemia is carried out on the basis of public hospitals in Israel. In order to get treatment in a clinic in Israel please contact us by phone, email or by filling in an application form and send medical records. They will be examined by doctors in the shortest time.
Innovative treatment of lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL)
Lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) of B cells – New treatment FDA approved
Seventeen patients in Israel have so far received the experimental genetic engineering treatment recommended by the FDA experts, and the success rate is amazing for doctors. Dr. Michal Besser, Director of the Laboratory that performs the treatment: “These are tremendous news, terminally ill patients are coming to life.”