The Pediatric Leukemia Symptoms – Nearly 60 percent of cancer children experience is blood cancer or leukemia. Unfortunately, when taken to the hospital most are already in acute stages. Know the characteristics of leukemia in children.
Leukemia is most common in children aged 2-6 years. But this cancer can occur in all age groups with the most groups being children and parents over the age of 50.
Leukemia is a condition of more white blood cells than red blood cells, but these white blood cells are abnormal. Leukemia occurs because the process of formation of blood cells is abnormal.
Blood stem cells fail to form and do not mature in time. As a result, two types of white blood cells have an excess number and develop myeloid and lymphoid cells.
If the number of abnormal cells is increasing, then the function of white blood cells that were previously tasked with protecting and fighting infection, turns into malignant cells that cause distorted symptoms.
Pediatric Leukemia Symptoms
Recognize the symptoms of leukemia in children that parents should pay attention to:
Red Blood Cells (Anemia)
The spinal cord attacked by cancer cells will usually produce fewer red blood cells. This causes leukemia sufferers in children also have anemia.
Red blood cells themselves act as oxygen carriers to all cells in the body.
Reported from the American Cancer Society, with a lack of red blood cells, leukemia patients in children will show symptoms such as quickly feeling tired, weak, feeling cold, dizziness, such as shortness of breath, and having pale skin.
White blood cells
White blood cells help the body to combat germs and bacteria.
Leukemia in children generally makes the child have a lot of white blood cells, but most of these white blood cells cannot perform their role properly.
As a result, the child will have an infection because the normal number of white blood cells is not enough.
Children with leukemia can contract infections that are difficult to cure and also ongoing.
In addition, the child will also have a fever that is often a sign of infection.
However, in some cases of leukemia in children, fever may also be experienced even without infection.
Pain in the joints
Pain in the joints due to cancer cells accumulates near the surface of the bone or in the joints.
Enlargement of the spleen or liver (swelling of the abdomen)
Cancer cells can accumulate in the liver and spleen, making both organs enlarged. From the outside, the child’s stomach looks big.
Loss of appetite and weight
When the liver and spleen are enlarged, they will push other organs such as the stomach. This makes children feel full quickly when they only eat small portions. As a result, the child’s weight also decreased drastically.
Swelling of the lymph nodes
Some cases of blood cancer spread to the lymph nodes. Swelling of the lymph nodes can be seen from lumps in the neck area, armpits, above the neck bone or in Adam’s apple. Lymph nodes in the chest can also swell, but can be seen if a CT scan or MRI is performed.
Easy bleeding or bruising
Bleeding in children can be in the form of bruises on the skin, nosebleeds or red spots as a sign of bleeding. This bleeding is caused by thrombocytopenia or platelets less than the normal amount (<150,000/μL). The lower the platelets the higher the risk of bleeding.
Other Pediatric Leukemia Symptoms
- Excessive sweating (especially at night).
- Bone pain
- Persistent infection
- Cough / sore throat
It is important to know that these symptoms are not always ascertained as symptoms of leukemia in children. However, parents should not underestimate and immediately consult a pediatrician if the child experiences some of these symptoms.
Detecting leukemia in early childhood, is always better than treating.