Acute Myeloid Leukemia

Acute Care

Acute Myeloid Leukemia

Acute Myeloid Leukemia

Acute myeloid leukemia (AML) is a cancer and is one of many illnesses that occur with the exposure of benzene.  Like other kinds of leukemia, it develops in the bone marrow spreads to the blood, lymph nodes, organs, the nervous system and other body parts.  If it is not detected early enough, AML can be fatal within a few months.

Benzene Exposure

Exposure to benzene for a long period is a known risk factor.  This carcinogen is a solvent used in industries that create drugs, rubber, dyes, plastics and other things.  People working in these industries have a higher risk of developing AML.

Groundwater is another place where exposure to benzene can occur.  This can happen near petroleum plants and gas stations when a leak happens or waste products are not disposed of properly. These and other dangerous chemicals may soak into the groundwater and residents close by may consume these chemical daily.

Additional Risk Factors

More factors increase the risk of acute myeloid leukemia consisting of:

Some chemotherapy drugs, especially if combined with radiation therapy
Some illnesses of the blood includes myelodysplastic syndrome, which damages the development of blood cells and may grow into leukemia.

Common and Specific Symptoms

Common symptoms of this leukemia are likely to be similar to conditions that are not as severe.  These symptoms may include:

Lack of appetite or weight loss

More specific symptoms include:

Anemia and its related symptoms (light headedness, weakness, headache)
Chronic infections
Bone/joint pain
Abdominal inflammation
Swelling, pain, bleeding of the gums
Rash (spottiness or bumps) on the skin

Diagnosis and Treatment

It is important that acute myeloid leukemia be diagnosed early and treated as soon as it is diagnosed for a positive result.  In diagnosing this leukemia, doctors will need a complete medical history from the patient.  A doctor will be able to tell if the patient was exposed to any risk factors such as benzene.  A series of tests will be run including blood tests.  If the illness was found a treatment plans established. It might include the following:

Radiation treatment
Bone marrow transplant
Clinical trials

Other treatments a doctor may suggest to relieve an individual’s pain are acupuncture, massage therapy, yoga, etc.

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