Acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) is cancer of the blood cells. It is the most common cancer in children. This type of leukemia is often very treatable and has a good chance of being cured.
In ALL, the body starts making abnormal white blood cells that can crowd out the healthy blood cells. This makes a child more likely to bleed, get infections, and not have enough red blood cells (anemia).
When you find out that your child has cancer, you may feel many emotions and may need some help coping. Seek out family, friends, and counsellors for support. You also can do things at home to make yourself feel better while you go through treatment. Call the Canadian Cancer Society (1-888-939-3333) or visit its website at www.cancer.ca for more information.
Chemotherapy or therapy with medicine is the main treatment, but radiation or bone marrow transplant also may be used. Your child may get medicine for the side effects of treatment, such as nausea and tiredness. You can do several things at home to help your child feel better and to prevent infections.
Follow-up care is a key part of your child's treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor or nurse call line if your child is having problems. It's also a good idea to know your child's test results and keep a list of the medicines your child takes.
Call 911 anytime you think your child may need emergency care. For example, call if:
Call your doctor or nurse call line now or seek immediate medical care if:
Watch closely for changes in your child's health, and be sure to contact your doctor or nurse call line if:
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Current as of: May 12, 2017
Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine
& Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine & Brian Leber, MDCM, FRCPC - Hematology
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