Types of Blood Cancers We Treat
We treat many types of blood cancers, including:
- Leukemia: This condition causes white blood cells to grow uncontrollably, leaving you less able to fight infection. Some leukemias progress slowly and others come on suddenly.
- Lymphoma: This cancer affects your lymphatic system, which includes tissues and organs that filter out germs and waste. Common types are Hodgkin and non-Hodgkin lymphoma.
- Multiple myeloma: Abnormal white blood cells form in the bone marrow. Over time, these cells crowd out healthy ones and affect your ability to fight infections.
- Myelodysplastic syndromes: Immature blood cells (stem cells) do not develop correctly, making it difficult for them to transport oxygen throughout your body.
- Myeloproliferative neoplasms: Abnormal growths (neoplasms) cause your body to produce high levels of red blood cells, white blood cells or platelets.
Leukemia, Lymphoma and Other Blood Cancer Symptoms
Symptoms depend on the diagnosis and its severity.
You may experience:
- Bleeding easily, including frequent nose bleeds
- Bone and joint pain
- Frequent infections
- Itchy skin or rash
- Night sweats
- Shortness of breath
- Unusual tiredness
Blood Cancer Diagnosis
Your care starts with an evaluation to learn more about your symptoms. We also perform blood or urine tests to check for abnormally high levels of certain blood components and other substances. This information helps us determine the additional tests you may need.
Additional testing may include:
- Bone marrow biopsy: We take a sample of bone marrow tissue and examine it under a microscope.
- Fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) testing: For eligible patients, this advanced test identifies cell abnormalities in ways that are not possible with a microscope.
- Imaging scans: If you experience bone or joint pain, imaging studies, like a computed tomography (CT) scan, enable us to detect bone damage.
- Molecular testing: These sophisticated tests help us identify specific proteins and other cell changes to better tailor therapies for patients who qualify.
Treatments for Leukemia, Lymphoma and Other Blood Cancers
Therapies that are right for your needs depend on the diagnosis and the cancer’s size and spread.
Your care may include:
- Medical oncology treatments: You may receive chemotherapy (cancer-fighting drugs) or immunotherapy, which enables your immune system to stop abnormal cells from growing. Find out more about other chemotherapy and other medical oncology options.
- Medications: We may recommend medications, like steroids, that destroy abnormal cells and decrease swelling.
- Radiation therapy: This treatment uses intense energy to break up and destroy cancer cells that have spread to other areas of the body. Read more about radiation therapy.
- Supportive care services: Additional services relieve therapy side effects and make receiving cancer treatment a little easier on you. Services may include medications and emotional support. Find out more about supportive care.