Acute leukemia is a type of cancer in the blood and the bone marrow. The bone marrow is where the blood cells are made and produced. It is called acute because it can progress quickly.
The bone marrow manufactures and produces red blood cells, platelets, and white blood cells. The white blood cells include lymphocytes, granulocytes, and monocytes.
Each type of cells has different functions. The red blood cells carry oxygen from the lungs to the rest of the body and carry carbon dioxide back into the lungs. The platelets is a very important component of blood coagulation. When there are cuts or wounds, the platelets will act as plug to stop bleeding. The white blood cells help the body fight off bacteria and other microorganisms that would cause disease.
An early blood-forming cell in the bone marrow can turn into a leukemia cell. The leukemia cells do not mature and will reproduce quickly and will not die. These cells will build up in the bone marrow and will eventually spill into the bloodstream and spread to the rest of the body, which will cause other cells from functioning properly.
There are four types of leukemia:
- Acute myeloid leukemia or AML
- Chronic myeloid leukemia or CML
- Acute lymphocytic leukemia or ALL
- Chronic lymphocytic leukemia or CLL
Leukemia is common in children but the treatment usually cures leukemia. However, in adults, the chance of being cured is low. Without treatment, acute leukemia can be fatal with only a few months to live.
The signs and symptoms of acute leukemia may include:
- Bleeding from the gums
- Bone pain
- Frequent nosebleeds
- Pale skin
- Shortness of breath
- Weakness or a general feeling of malaise
- Lumps that are located in the neck, underarm, abdomen or groin, this is because of swollen lymph nodes.
If you think you are suffering from Acute Leukemia you should seek medical assistance. You may also be entitled to Social Security Disability Benefits. The SSA considered Acute Leukemia as a medical condition that would make you eligible for SSDI and SSI. Social Security Administration (SSA) maintains a “Listing of Medical Impairments” (known as the blue book) that automatically qualify you for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI).