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Leukemia , What to Expect From Symptoms of Langerhans Cancer

 

Leukemia

Leukemia is a form of cancer that can strike children as well as adults. Although there are a number of types of this disease, it normally starts in the blood cells and affects the lymphatic system, bone marrow, spleen and liver. The cause is unknown but is thought to involve genetics and environmental factors. Symptoms vary with the type of leukemia but generally include fever and chills, night sweats, swollen lymph nodes, weight loss, fatigue and weakness. Treatment depends on the type of leukemia but can include chemotherapy, radiation therapy, stem cell transplants and bone marrow transplants. With treatment, many leukemia patients can enjoy many quality years of life.

What to Expect From Symptoms of Langerhans Cancer

Langerhans cell histiocytosis is a rare disease that occurs when too many Langerhans cells are produced by the body. A Langerhans cell is a type of white blood cell that aids the body in fighting off infection. These cells are normally found in bone marrow, lungs, spleen and lymph nodes. With over-production, though, they may travel to different parts of the body where they can accumulate and cause damage or form tumors. There is disagreement within the medical field as to whether this condition is a true cancer or a type of immune system disorder. Because these cells can travel almost anywhere in the body wreaking havoc, there are many symptoms of Langerhans cancer. The symptoms vary, depending upon where the cells accumulate in the body.

Symptoms of the skin and mouth

Flaking of the scalp may occur, resembling dandruff or cradle cap. Raised brown or purple spots can develop anywhere on the body, and ulcers may appear on the scalp, groin or behind the ears. Gums can become swollen, and sores may appear inside the mouth or on the tongue or lips.

Symptoms involving organs

If the liver and spleen are affected, fluid may accumulate in the abdomen, resulting in a swollen effect. The skin may bruise easily, and bleeding may occur. The skin and whites of the eyes sometimes take on a yellow cast. Lung involvement may cause difficulty breathing, fatigue and chest tightness, and the skin may appear bluish.

Gland and lymph node involvement

Lymph nodes may swell and difficulty breathing can result. If the pituitary gland is affected, slow growth may occur along with delay of puberty. Diabetes may also develop, signaled by increased thirst and urination. Involvement of the thyroid gland can cause a wide variety of symptoms, including swelling of the gland, difficulty breathing and hypothyroidism. Symptoms of hypothyroidism include fatigue, chills, constipation, thinning hair, dry skin, weight gain, depression, lack of energy, slowed growth, delayed puberty and lack of energy.

Bone marrow and central nervous system

When the bone marrow is affected, bones in the skull, hips, spine, ribs and elbow may swell and cause pain. Bruising and bleeding can occur easily, infections are frequent and fever is often present. Central nervous system involvement can manifest as loss of balance and coordination, memory and concentration problems, changes in behavior and speech difficulties. Diabetes can also result when the central nervous system is involved, causing increased thirst and urination.

The symptoms of Langerhans cancer vary widely and are common to many other conditions. This condition is more common in children, but can also occur in adults. When any of these symptoms occur, it is important to bring them to the attention of a physician who can make a proper diagnosis

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