However, sometimes these aches or pains can be the sign of a more serious underlying condition such as leukaemia. Although bone pain is the most common of these symptoms in leukaemia, according to our patient survey, muscle pain or back pain can precede a leukaemia diagnosis in 11% and 13% of cases, respectively.
Back pain: An unusual manifestation of acute lymphoblastic leukemia – A case report and review of literature - PMC. The . gov means it's official.
Bone pain can occur in leukemia patients when the bone marrow expands from the accumulation of abnormal white blood cells and may manifest as a sharp pain or a dull pain, depending on the location. The long bones of the legs and arms are the most common location to experience this pain.
Low backache as an initial manifestation of acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) in adults has been rarely reported. In this hematological disorder, although bone marrow is replaced by malignant cells, not many cases of low backache as an initial presentation of ALL are reported.
Leukemia or myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS) can cause bone or joint pain, usually because your bone marrow has become overcrowded with cancer cells. At times, these cells may form a mass near the spinal cord's nerves or in the joints.
To our knowledge, no cases of leukemia presenting solely with back pain are present in the emergency medicine literature. There have been cases where adult patients' acute leukemia has presented as pain in joints involving the back, but these were accompanied by pain in the long bones that is more typical of leukemia.
Leukemia starts in the soft, inner part of the bones (bone marrow), but often moves quickly into the blood. It can then spread to other parts of the body, such as the lymph nodes, spleen, liver, central nervous system and other organs.
Leukemia cells can spread to the central nervous system and build up in the fluid surrounding the spine and the brain. This can cause symptoms like headaches, seizures, balance problems, and abnormal vision.
Signs and symptoms of Advanced Lymphoma
The enlarged lymph node sometimes causes other symptoms by pressing against a vein (causing swelling of an arm or leg), or against a nerve (causing pain, numbness, or tingling in an arm or leg). Some people experience lower back pain that is unexplained.
Spotting bone and joint pain
Bone pain caused by leukaemia is most commonly felt in the long bones of the arms and legs, or in the ribs and sternum of the rib cage.
In CLL, the leukemia cells grow out of control and crowd out normal blood cells. These cells often build up slowly over time. Many people don't have any symptoms for at least a few years. In time, the cells can spread to other parts of the body, including the lymph nodes, liver, and spleen.
There are currently no at-home tests that a person may use to aid leukemia diagnosis. If an individual has concerns about their health, they should contact a doctor as soon as possible.
Some symptoms, like night sweats, fever, fatigue and achiness, resemble flu-like symptoms. Unlike symptoms of the flu, which generally subside as you get better, leukemia symptoms generally last longer than two weeks, and may include sudden weight loss, bone and joint pain and easy bleeding or bruising.
Common areas of pain include ribs, spine, pelvis, breast bone, abdomen and long bones of the legs and arms.
When back pain is caused by a cancerous spinal tumor, it typically: Starts gradually and worsens over time. Does not improve with rest and may intensify at night. Flares up as a sharp or shock-like pain in the upper or lower back, which may also go into the legs, chest, or elsewhere in the body.
Chronic leukemia usually gets worse slowly, over months to years, while acute leukemia develops quickly and progresses over days to weeks. The two main types of leukemia can be further organized into groups that are based on the type of white blood cell that is affected — lymphoid or myeloid.
Sometimes leukemia can spread, or metastasize. If it spreads to the brain, symptoms may include headaches, seizures, balance problems, or vision problems. If it spreads to the lymph nodes in the chest, symptoms may include breathing problems and chest pain.
While the exact cause of leukemia—or any cancer, for that matter—is unknown, there are several risk factors that have been identified, such as radiation exposure, previous cancer treatment and being over the age of 65.
Age-specific incidence rates fall gradually from age 0-4 and remain stable throughout childhood and early adulthood, rates rise sharply from around age 55-59. The highest rates are in in the 85 to 89 age group for females and males. Incidence rates are significantly lower in females than males in most age groups.
By looking at a sample of your blood, your doctor can determine if you have abnormal levels of red or white blood cells or platelets — which may suggest leukemia. A blood test may also show the presence of leukemia cells, though not all types of leukemia cause the leukemia cells to circulate in the blood.
"A patient may be tested for leukemia if he or she has unexplained weight loss, night sweats or fatigue, or if he or she bruises or bleeds easily," Dr. Siddon says. "Sometimes routine blood work shows an unexplained elevated number of white blood cells."
Acute leukemia symptoms can often appear suddenly
With acute leukemia, symptoms tend to develop very quickly. You may suddenly spike a fever that won't go away, develop an infection for no apparent reason, or start bleeding spontaneously from your nose or gums and not be able to stop it.
Chronic leukemia often causes only a few symptoms or none at all. Signs and symptoms usually develop gradually. People with a chronic leukemia often complain that they just do not feel well.
For instance, leukemia, a cancer that affects the body's blood-forming tissues, can sometimes be detected in a routine blood test. Specifically, the CBC test measures the levels of the various types of blood cells circulating in the bloodstream, including red blood cells, white blood cells and platelets.