Leukemia Essay

Leukemia is a disease characterized by the formation of abnormal numbers of
white blood cells, for which no certain cure has been found. Leukemia is also
conditions characterized by the transformation of normal blood-forming cells
into abnormal white blood cells whose unrestrained growth overwhelms and
replaces normal bone marrow and blood cells. Leukemias are named according to
the normal cell from which they originate, such as Lymphocyte Leukemia.

Lymphocyte Leukemia is where a Lymphocyte cell is transformed into a Leukemia
cell. Another example of Leukemia is Myelocytic or (Granulocytic Leukemia). This
forms when a Myelocytic cell is changed or transformed into a Leukemia cell.

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Different Leukemia’s are located in the microscope and by how much protein they
contain. These Leukemia’s are usually very severe and need treatment right away.

The present incidence of new cases per year in the United States is about 25 to
every 100,000 persons. The danger to the patient lies in the growth of these
abnormal white cells, which interfere with the growth of the red blood cells,
normal white blood cells, and the blood platelets. The uncontrolled growth of
the abnormal white cells produces a tendency to unstop bleeding, the risk of
getting serious infection in the wounds, and a very small possibility of
obstruction of the blood vessels. Treatment of these Leukemias include
chemotherapy with alkylafing agents, or antimetabodies that suppress the growth
of abnormal white cells. Another treatment of some kind would be the x-ray or
the administration or radioactive substances, or radiophosphorus, may be used.

After treatment these diseases may last for many years. Age of the person
diagnosed with Leukemia does play an important part in how that individual
responds to any treatment. The older the person the less response he may have to
treatment. Leukemia in Animals white blood cells is much less common as Leukemia
in humans white blood cells. Today’s treatment mostly includes chemotherapy and
or bone marrow transplantation supportive care, where transfusions of blood
components and prompt treatment of complicating infections, is very important.

Ninety percent of children with Acute Lymphocyte Leukemia have received
chemotherapy and fifty percent of theses children have been fully cured of
Leukemia. Treatment of AML or Acute Myeolcytic Leukemia is not as successful but
has been improving more and more throughout the 1990’s. Scientists that study
the cause of Leukemia have not had very much success lately. Very large doses of
x-rays can increase the efficacy growth of Leukemia. Chemicals such as Benzene
also may increase the risk of getting Leukemia. Scientists have tried
experiments on Leukemia in Animals by transmitting RNA into the body of the
Animal. Interpretation of these results in relation with human Leukemia is very
cautious at this time. Studies have also suggested that family history, race,
genetic factors, and geography may all play some part in determining the rates
of growth of these Leukemias. Stewart Alsop is an example of Acute Myeoblastic
Leukemia, or AML. On the day of July 21, 1971 Stewart was made aware of some of
the doctors suspicions due to his bone marrow test. He was told by his doctor in
Georgetown that his marrow slides looked so unusual that he had brought in other
doctors to view the test and they could not come to an agreement so they all
suggested that he take another bone marrow exam. The second test was known to be
“hypocelluar” meaning that it had very few cells of any sort, normal
of abnormal. The Georgetown doctors counted, about fourty-four percent of his
cells were abnormal, and he added, with a condor that he later discovered
characteristics. “They were ugly-looking cells.” Most of them looked
like Acute Meyoblastic Leukemia cells, but not all some of them looked like the
cells of another kind of Leukemia, Acatymphoblastic Leukemia, and some of them
looked like the cells of still another kind of bone marrow cancer, not a
Leukemia, it is called Dysprotinemia. And even the Myeloblastic cells didn’t
look exactly like Myeloblastic cells should look. Stewart has been treated with
chemotherapy and is still living today but he doesn’t have very much longer to
live. Sadako Saski was born in Japan in the year of 1943 she died twelve years
later in the year of 1955 of Leukemia. She was in Hiroshima when the United
States Air Force dropped an atomic bomb on that city in an attempt to end World
War II. Sadako Saski was only two years old when all this had happened. Ten
years later, Sadako had been diagnosed with Leukemia as a result of the
radiation from the bomb. At this time Sadako was only a twelve year old little
girl and she died of Leukemia. Everyday Sadako grew weaker and weaker thinking
about her death and the day finally came. Sadako died on October 25, 1955.

Sadako was very much loved by all of her classmates. At the time of death, her
classmates folded 356 paper cranes to be buried with her. This is a symbol in
Jpan of thoughtfulness. In summary to what I have learned about Leukemia it is a
very painful disease. The people with Leukemia suffer very much throughout the
disease and treatment of the disease, even if they are eventually cured. The
treatment it took to get there was very painful. The studies of Leukemia
have helped alot of people to be cured but there are still alot of people
suffering due to no cure found to help them. I’m sure like all other cures
needed, the money is short funded for the research that cost so very much. Maybe
someday soon, we hope, they will find a cure for all kinds of cancer.


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