Essay: Diagnosis of Leukemia

Sample Essay

On physical examination depending on which type there may be bruising, an enlarged spleen or liver or lymph nodes (Medline Plus, 2009).

Tests/Imaging Studies

A complete blood count is always done to confirm a blood disorder. This is followed by a differential blood count, a hematocrit assay, hemoglobin levels, prothrombin time and finally blood morphology and staining.

In ALL there is an abnormal White blood cell count, low red blood cell and platelet count. Genetic testing is done to know the specific type of ALL (Medline Plus, 2009).

In AML there are low platelets with a variable white blood cell count. Bone marrow aspiration will show evidence of proliferated cells. There are eight AML subtypes diagnosed by these cells ranging from M0 to M7 (Medline Plus, 2008).

In CML there is an increased number to white blood cells. The bone marrow may be biopsied and aspirated. Tests will also be done to locate the Philadelphia chromosome (Medline Plus, 2009).

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