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National Leukemia and Lymphoma Awareness Month
September Is National Leukemia and Lymphoma Awareness Month. Leukemia and
lymphoma are both hematologic malignancies, meaning that they involve the blood or bone
marrow. According to the American Cancer Institute, leukemia is the most common blood
cancer, and more than 40,000 adults and 3,500 children are diagnosed with Leukemia each
year. They also say that Lymphoma accounts for about 5% of cancers. The first step toward
raising awareness is understanding what these diseases are.
What is Leukemia?
Leukemia is cancer of the blood cells and it starts in the bone marrow. Bone marrow
makes blood cells, and in leukemia the bone marrow makes too many abnormal
white blood cells. These abnormal white blood cells do not perform the work of
normal white blood cells and they grow faster and out of control.
What is Lymphoma?
Lymphoma is cancer of the lymphatic system. The Lymphatic system carries lymph
fluid and white blood cells through the body to fight infections. Hodgkin’s Lymphoma
spreads between the lymph node regions. Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma is found in the
lymph nodes or lymphatic organs such as the liver, stomach, or nervous system.
Signs and Symptoms of Leukemia
Symptoms of leukemia include fever and night sweats, headaches, bone or joint
pain, easy bruising, an enlarged spleen, swollen lymph nodes, fatigue, and weight
loss. Talk to your doctor if you experience these. They may be symptoms of other
Signs and Symptoms of Lymphoma
A common early sign is a painless lump or swollen gland in the neck, abdomen,
groin, or underarm. Other symptoms include red patches on the skin, nausea and
vomiting, coughing, night sweats, weight loss, fatigue, and high fevers. While these
can be symptoms of other conditions, talk to your doctor if you experience these.
“Sometimes your only available transportation is a leap of faith”.
~ Margaret Shepherd