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Leukemia

Greek: leukos = white , aima = blood
Synonym : Leukaemia (BE)
German: Leukämie

1 Definition

Leukemia is a cancer of white blood cells (Leukocytes) or their precursors in the bone marrow.
The disease is termed according to:
(I) the type of abnormal cells found most in the blood:

(II) the maturity of those abnormal cells:

  • immature cells ("blasts") = acute leukemia
  • mixed maturity = chronic leukemia

2 History

In 1845, Rudolf Virchow discovered a whitening of a whole blood sample. He described this finding as "white blood syndrome" and subseqeuntly generated the term Leukämie (BE: leukaemia, AE:leukemia) as a composition of the greec words leukos (=white) and aima (=blood).

3 Leukemia incidences

  • all ages : approx. 5 / 100.000
  • children : approx. 4 / 100.000

4 Leukemia classifiction

5 Symptoms



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