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September is Blood Cancer Awareness Month: What Are the Types of Blood Cancer?

Home Health Care in Chicago IL: September is Blood Cancer Awareness Month: What Are the Types of Blood Cancer?

Home Health Care in Chicago IL: September is Blood Cancer Awareness Month: What Are the Types of Blood Cancer?

Blood cancers affect the way the body produces blood cells and the way the blood cells function. Blood cancer often starts in the bone marrow, which is responsible for manufacturing blood cells. Blood cells start out as stem cells that mature into different kinds of blood cells. The kinds of blood cells are white blood cells, red blood cells, and platelets. When a person has blood cancer, the blood cells form abnormally and grow in an uncontrollable manner.

Understanding the different kinds of blood cancer can help family caregivers for older adults with blood cancer to coordinate appropriate care.

Three Kinds of Blood Cancer
There are three main kinds of blood cancer, which also have sub-types. The three main kinds of blood cancer are:

  • Myeloma: When a person has myeloma, the plasma cells are affected. A plasma cell is a kind of white blood cell that makes the antibodies necessary for fighting off infections. The sub-types of myeloma are multiple myeloma, plasmacytoma, localized myeloma, and extramedullary myeloma. Of these, multiple myeloma is the most common. People with myeloma have weakened immune systems, so they are more likely to develop infections.
  • Lymphoma: With lymphoma, a person’s lymphatic system is affected. The lymphatic system is responsible for producing immune cells as well as for removing unnecessary fluids from the body. When a person has lymphoma, their lymphocytes (a kind of white blood cell) turn into lymphomas that multiply uncontrollably and build up in the lymph nodes. Sub-types of lymphoma are Hodgkin lymphoma and non-Hodgkin lymphoma.
  • Leukemia: Leukemia occurs in the blood and bone marrow. It is the result of rapidly multiplying abnormal white blood cells that make it hard to fight infections. The body also has difficulty making new red blood cells and platelets. There are many different types of leukemia, which are classified by the rate of growth and the kind of white blood cell that is affected

When a senior has leukemia, it may be helpful for family caregivers to hire a home care provider to assist with at-home care. A home care provider can help the ailing senior to do things that may be difficult because of the illness, such as light house cleaning, meal preparation, and laundry. Home care providers can also drive seniors to their medical appointments or to a support group. Other things home care providers can do include medication reminders, assistance with bathing and toileting, and help with basic grooming needs like dressing.


About Lenora Alabi, Branch Manager

Lenora Alabi graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Chemistry from Millikin University in Decatur, IL. Prior to joining the BrightStar Care team, Lenora taught pharmacy related courses as the Lead Instructor for the Pharmacy Technician Program at Everest College for six years, helping to prepare students for careers in pharmacy. She was also the Program Manager for the Massage Therapy Program at Everest.

Lenora joined the BrightStar Care Family in 2015 as a Customer Care Manager where she excelled and made a significant impact on customers and staff through her passion in delivering a higher standard of care. Lenora became Branch Manager in 2016 and she continues to exhibit that same passion by ensuring that the highest quality care is provided to all clients and families. She also works diligently to ensure that the BrightStar Care core values are a meaningful part of every activity. “The standards are impeccable, and BrightStar Care is a company that works endlessly to ensure that customers are receiving the best care possible.”

Topics: General Health