Pay attention if you're more fatigued than normal
Believe it or not, most of the new blood cells your body produces come from your bone marrow—a fatty substance found in large quantities in the bulbous, bulky ends of your bones. For those suffering from leukaemia, one of these new blood cells mutates and becomes cancerous. It then starts to clone—or make copies of itself—and that's how the disease progresses.
There are several 'subtypes' of leukaemia, which are defined by the kind of blood cells that mutate, and also by how early in the cell production process that mutation takes place, explains Meredith Barnhart, MS, an information specialist with The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s Information Resource Center.
Both Barnhart and Wadleigh make it clear that, when it comes to leukaemia, there is no single sign or symptom. 'The symptoms depend on the subtype,' Barnhart says. But there are some overlapping symptoms that tend to show up among those suffering from the more common types of adult leukaemia.
Here's what to watch out for.