ALL


 

How to pronounce it: (Lim-fo-SIH-tick)

With Acute Lymphocytic Leukemia (ALL), you have an increased number of white blood cells called lymphocytes. This specific type of white blood cell, made in your lymph glands and bone marrow, has gotten out of control in your body.

Treatment for ALL:

There are generally four phases of treatment for ALL according to the National Cancer Institute:

  1. The first phase, called induction chemotherapy, is aimed at achieving remission. Remission is when bone marrow, examined under the microscope, has no visible leukemia cells (or blasts). The red blood cells, platelets, and white blood cells also appear normal.
  2. The second phase, called central nervous system (CNS) prophylaxis is preventive therapy (just in case!). It uses intrathecal (within the spinal cord) and/or high-dose systemic (throughout your body) chemotherapy to kill any leukemia cells in your CNS. It is also to prevent the spread of cancer cells to your brain and spinal cord, even if no cancer has been detected there.Radiation therapy to the brain may also be given, in addition to chemotherapy, for this purpose.
  3. Once you go into remission and there are no signs of leukemia, a third phase of treatment called consolidation or intensification therapy, is given. Consolidation uses high-dose chemotherapy to attempt to kill any remaining leukemia cells. Sometime CNS prophylaxis is given with this phase of treatment.
  4. The fourth phase of treatment, called maintenance therapy, uses chemotherapy to maintain remission.

The first phase, called induction chemotherapy, is aimed at achieving remission. Remission is when bone marrow, examined under the microscope, has no visible leukemia cells (or blasts). The red blood cells, platelets, and white blood cells also appear normal.

img_5136Being diagnosed with ALL is rough. There are lots of blood tests, many admissions to the hospital, feeling crummy and plenty of disruptions to your usual daily routines. On the brighter side, you have the most common type of cancer in children. That’s good because treatments are very effective for this form of leukemia.

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