Blood Cancer

The stem cells present in bone marrow develop into three distinct blood cells, namely, platelets, red blood cells and white blood cells. When the production of blood is interrupted it often gives rise to blood cancer.  

With that knowledge, let’s move along to find out more about blood cancer symptoms, blood cancer reasons and other vital factors of this disease.

What is Blood Cancer?

Hematologic cancer or blood cancer develops when the blood cells and bone marrow of a person get affected. It directly hampers the production and functioning of these cells and subsequently leads to abnormal growth of cancer cells.

With that being said, let’s learn about different types of blood cancer.

Types of Blood Cancer

Typically, there are three types of blood cancer, namely – leukaemia, lymphoma and myeloma. Read along to gain valuable insight about them in brief. 

  1. Leukaemia

This type of blood cancer tends to affect the WBCs or leukocytes along with the bone marrow and hampers its ability to produce blood platelets and RBCs. It occurs when a body produces abnormal blood cells rapidly. 

It is further divided into 4 types, namely – acute lymphoblastic leukaemia, acute myeloid leukaemia, chronic lymphocytic leukaemia and chronic myeloid leukaemia. 

  1. Lymphoma

Lymphoma affects the lymphatic system and its ability to fight against infectious diseases. It is the abnormal lymphocytes of WBCs which become lymphoma cells and grow uncontrollably in lymph nodes and tissues. 

Typically, there are two types of lymphoma, Hodgkin lymphoma and non-Hodgkin lymphoma, and they affect the bone marrow, blood cells and spleen.

  1. Myeloma

Plasma cells produce disease-fighting antibodies. Notably, in myeloma, the production of plasma cells gets hampered, and as a result, the immune system starts to weaken. It directly makes the body prone to several infections and diseases.  

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Test Your Knowledge: How blood cancer is caused in each of these cases? a) Leukaemia b) Lymphoma c) Myeloma.

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Symptoms of Blood Cancer

Some of the most common blood cancer symptoms are as follows –

  • Fatigue and malaise.

  • Easy bruising.

  • Shortness of breath.

  • Recurrent fever.

  • Delirium and confusion.

  • Recurrent infections.

  • Bleeding gums.

  • Brittle bones.

  • Weight loss.

  • Anorexia.

  • Nausea.

  • Sweating at night.

  • Enlargement of lymph node.

  • Backache, abdominal and bone pain.

  • Persistent cough.

  • Lack of appetite.

  • skin irritation.

  • difficulty to urinate.

Test Your Knowledge: Which of these is the red blood cell?

  1. Erythrocytes b) Leucocytes c) Plasma d) Thrombocytes.

What Causes Blood Cancer?

Though the specific causes of blood cancer are still unknown, several factors have been closely associated with its occurrence.

Some of the prominent factors include – 

  1. Ageing.

  2. Weak immune system.

  3. Heredity factors.

  4. Excessive smoking and consumption of alcohol.

  5. Prolonged exposure to chemotherapy.

  6. Infections.

  7. Organ transplantation.

FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

1. What is the reason for blood cancer?

Ans. There is no specific cause as to how blood cancer occurs. However, age, weak immune system, infection and hereditary factors are believed to be among the prominent causes.

2. What are the symptoms of blood cancer?

Ans. Blood cancer symptoms include fatigue, easy bruising, recurrent fever and infection, shortness of breath, delirium and confusion and bleeding gums. Also, brittle bones, weight loss, enlargement of lymph nodes and abdominal pain are among the prominent symptoms of blood cancer.

3. How many types of blood cancer are there?

Ans. In a broader sense, there are three types of blood cancer – leukaemia, lymphoma and myeloma.