Are there Different Types of Leukaemia?

Updated at: Apr 13, 2012
Are there Different Types of Leukaemia?

Types of Leukaemia: Leukaemia is classified on the basis of its affect on white blood cells or it getting worse.

Himanshu Sharma
CancerWritten by: Himanshu SharmaPublished at: Apr 12, 2012

There are four types of leukaemia, namely acute, chronic, myelogenous and lymphocytic. This broad classification is made on the basis of it getting worse or what type of white blood cells it affects.

Leukaemia is a malady affecting blood forming cells, which initiates in the bone marrow. Generally, the disease is attributed by excess of white blood cells in the body. It is also referred to as cancer of blood cells, wherein the softest tissues of bone produces a lot of abnormal white blood cells, known as leukaemia cells.

Leukaemia cells do not function like normal white blood cells, and also grow at substantial pace than normal cells. Thereafter, these cells outnumber normal blood cells, leading to health ailments like anaemia, bleeding, and infections. Besides, leukaemia cells affect lymph nodes or other organs, causing swelling or pain.

Different Types of Leukaemia

Leukaemia types are categorised on the basis of it getting worse and what kind of white blood cell it affects.

1.    Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia (ALL)

Acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (ALL) is a health condition in which body produces many white blood cells known as lymphocytes. The lymphocytes, incapable of combating infection, acquire space of healthy blood cells. Conditions like anaemia and easy bleeding are the consequences of acute leukaemia.

The commonest type of childhood leukaemia affects children belonging to age group 2-5 years. Indicators of acute leukaemia include fever, weakness, bleeding easily, bone pain and loss of appetite.

2.    Acute Myelogenous Leukaemia (AML)

In this health condition, body make large number of white blood cells, known as myelocytes. The condition is more common in men than in women, with similar symptoms like fever, night sweats, feeling of fullness below ribs, sudden weight loss and painless lumps. High dosage of radiation, exposure to the chemical benzene, chemotherapy and smoking are plausible causes of this condition.

3.    Chronic Lymphocytic Leukaemia (CLL)

Chronic lymphocytic leukaemia (CLL), which gets worse slowly, affects adults having surpassed 60 years. Among symptoms of leukaemia include fatigue, night sweats, poor appetite and weight loss. In this condition, lymph and spleen glands get swollen and painful. Moreover, individual experiences several infections due to disability of immune system.

4.    Chronic Myelogenous Leukaemia (CML)

Chronic myelogenous leukemia (CML) occurs in adults over 50 years. In the condition, individuals experience mutation called philadelphia chromosome. The leukaemia form is divided into three phases, namely chronic phase, accelerated phase and blast crisis phase. Spleen become swollen and painful, while other signs of malady are weakness, persistent fever, night sweats, poor appetite and unexplained weight loss.


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