Leukaemia Symptoms in a Toddler
Leukaemia symptoms in a toddler can vary from a mild fever to swollen lymph nodes. A toddler’s immune system is weak; therefore recurrent fever may occur due to many reasons. It’s better to get your toddler examined if he shows any of the below mentioned symptoms.
Fever and infection
Recurrent fevers without any apparent reason are one of the symptoms of leukaemia. Generally toddlers suffer from mild illnesses and fevers from time to time, but if he has constant fevers, it can be a symptom of leukaemia. In leukaemia production of white blood cells gets hampered. This weakens the body’s immune system, which makes it unfit to fight illness. If your toddler has leukaemia, he/she will be susceptible to frequent fevers.
Excessive low level of red blood cells
A toddler suffering from leukaemia has a less than normal level of red blood cells. This condition is called anaemia. In leukaemia overproduction of white blood cells take place in bone marrow. So no place is left for red blood cells (RBC). This decreases the amount of RBC in the blood, causing anaemia. The oxygen carrying capacity also reduces. Your toddler starts feeling shortness of breath. He will find it difficult to breathe after playing. Your toddler will become tired easily due to reduced oxygen supply.
Loss of appetite
Toddlers suffering from leukaemia have decreased appetite. This symptom is not a determining factor for leukaemia as many toddlers have poor appetite. A toddler with leukaemia refuses to eat anything. He shows a sudden loss of appetite. This causes them to lose weight drastically.
Frequent bruising and bleeding
A toddler with leukaemia is very prone to bruising and bleeding. Even a minor cut or injury can cause excessive bruising and bleeding. Toddlers suffering from leukaemia have epistaxis (nose bleed). If he undergoes any cut or minor injury, he can bleed to death as the blood fails to clot. This occurs because leukaemia inhibits the production of blood platelets which are essential for clotting.
Lump formation and swelling
During leukaemia lymph nodes get infected. This causes swelling of lymph nodes especially in the neck and groin area. Toddlers suffering from leukaemia experience lump formation throughout the body. Lumps will appear near the neck, underarm, stomach and groin region. Lumps can appear near the eyes as well. Lumps appear due to reduced levels of normal blood cells.
Apart from the above symptoms, the toddler also shows signs of headache, dizziness, excessive sweating during night, joint and abdominal pains.
Source: Onlymyhealth editorial team Apr 16, 2012
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