Acute Myeloid Leukemia Flashcards, test questions and answers
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What is Acute Myeloid Leukemia?
Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML) is a type of cancer of the blood and bone marrow. It is an aggressive form of leukemia, characterized by rapid growth of abnormal white blood cells that crowd out normal cells in the bone marrow. It’s one of the most common types of leukemia in adults, but can occur at any age. The cause of AML is unknown, but certain risk factors may increase your chances of developing it such as exposure to radiation or chemotherapy, being over 65 years old, or having certain inherited genetic disorders. Symptoms can include fatigue, fever, shortness of breath, bruising or bleeding easily and feeling full after only a small amount of food. Diagnosis typically involves a physical exam and lab tests such as a complete blood count (CBC) and bone marrow biopsy. Treatment for AML depends on several factors including age, health status and genetic makeup. Options may include chemotherapy drugs given intravenously or orally to kill cancer cells; targeted therapies designed to attack specific parts of cancer cells; stem cell transplantation to replace damaged bone marrow with healthy donor stem cells; and radiation therapy which uses high-energy rays to destroy cancerous tissue. AML can be a challenging disease to treat with its aggressive nature and potential for relapse after treatment has finished. However with new developments in targeted therapies there is hope that this disease can be managed more successfully in the future.