Leukaemia is the name given to cancers that develop in the bone marrow.
Leukaemia cells multiply in an uncontrolled way in the developing blood cells within the bone marrow and therefore don’t function properly. Depending on the type of leukaemia the initial symptoms you may experience are typically tiredness from anaemia, an increase in infections, bruising and bone pain.
Both adults and children can develop leukaemia but certain types are more common in different age groups. Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL) is the most common childhood cancer. ALL can occur at any age but is more common in young children (0-14 years). Chronic Lymphocytic Leukaemia (CLL) on the other hand is a slow growing leukaemia and is more common in adults over 60.
Treatment for leukaemia typically involves chemotherapy and steroids.
There is a growing interest in the role that nutrients play in the development of leukamiea. For example, a recent study* found that vitamin D deficiency is highly prevlanet in patients diagnosed with leukemia which is worsened with the intensity of the initial stages of treatment. Clinical outcomes were superior in those patients that had sufficient vitamin D levels.
*Seyedalipour F, et al. High Prvalence of Vitamin D Deficiency in Nely Diagnosed Acute Myeloid Leukemia Patients and its Adverse Outcome. Int J Hematol Oncol Stem Cell Res. 2017; 11(3):209-216. PMID: 28989587