Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia Treatment Options
Acute lymphoblastic leukemia options vary, depending on whether the patient is a child or an adult. Often referred to as childhood leukemia, this form of cancer is usually not fatal when children are concerned. However, acute leukemia prognosis in adults is much less positive.
Both the blood and bone marrow are affected by acute lymphoblastic leukemia. Although treatments may vary, all patients go through the same four stages. The induction period involves going through radiation or chemo therapy to eliminate the cancerous cells. This is considered to be the most dangerous period to patients as their ability to fight off common diseases will be impaired.
The second treatment phase of acute lymphoblastic leukemia involves targeted therapy. This is where doctors will search the body for any remaining cancerous cells, then they will use cancer treatment drugs or induction therapy to kill them off in a targeted manner.
The third stage of chronic lymphocytic leukemia treatment also includes cancer treatment drugs. They are used to keep new cancerous cells from growing along with long-term monitoring. During this period, a patient may be categorized as being in remission.
The last phase of lymphoblastic leukemia may include the usage of hematopoietic stem cells injected into the spinal cord. Because this type of cancer originates in the spine, medicines and treatments centering around this area can keep cancer from reappearing.
The management method that you use to treat your acute lymphoblastic leukemia might be varied, especially if you are 65 years of age or older. Because of the stress that the body goes through during chemotherapy, radiation based therapy and when cancer medicines are used, older patients are at a higher risk of complications. Realize that treatment for lymphoblastic leukemia can last anywhere from two to four years and that the process may need to be repeated several times over.
Your doctor will have to run numerous tests in order to determine whether or not you have been cured, but even then blood cancer can come back at virtually anytime. You will have a better chance of making it through an additional round of therapy if you are able to keep your immune system healthy.