Warning Signs of Leukemia
The MayoClinic.com notes that a problem with noticing the early warning signs of leukemia is that many of them resemble flu symptoms; the severity of the symptoms are dependent on the amount of abnormal blood cells present in the patient's body. Therefore, if the patient has a slow developing form of leukemia, it can take many years before the warning signs are noticed.
The patient may notice tiny red spots on her skin, which the MayoClinic.com terms as petechiae. Another physical symptom is swollen lymph nodes, though the patient may also have an enlarged spleen or liver. If the patient has an enlarged spleen, she can feel extra pressure under her left ribs.
If injured, the patient may bleed or bruise easily, even if the wound was minor. Persistent fatigue and weakness are also warning signs of leukemia, as well as bone pain and tenderness. The patient may also be prone to frequent infections. Other warning signs include fever, chills, and shortness of breath during physical activity.
Some leukemia types have specific warning signs. Warning signs of both acute forms of leukemia include bleeding in the gums or nose, and unusual paleness of the skin. In female patients, they can have irregular menstruations, such as bleeding in between periods or missing periods. Patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia may also experience early satiety, unintentional weight loss, and excessive sweating. Another warning sign of chronic myleogenous leukemia is night sweats.