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World Blood Cancer Day 2017

written by

Leukaemia Care, Charity

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Today (Sunday 28th May) is World Blood Cancer Day (WBCD). The symbol of World Blood Cancer Day is a red ampersand (&), which is more commonly used to represent the word ‘and’.

Here at Leukaemia CARE, we know that most people have heard of the word leukaemia, but don’t know very much about it. So, we’re asking to you to find out more about leukaemia by asking … & (and)?

So, let’s start this off with a simple… most people don’t know that:

1. Leukaemia is a form of blood cancer.

Leukaemia starts in blood-forming tissue, usually the bone marrow. Like other cancer types, it involves the over-production of abnormal cells.

Leukaemia affects white blood cells, a part of the immune system, which defends the body against infection. Find out more here.


2. There are lots of different types of leukaemia, which can affect people very differently.

The most common four types of leukaemia are: 


3. Leukaemia affects people of all ages.

Contrary to popular perception, leukaemia doesn’t just affect children. In fact, it is mostly common in adults aged 65 and over.


4. Common symptoms of leukaemia experienced before diagnosis include: fatigue, weakness, breathlessness, fever, night sweats, bruising and bleeding.

You can find out more about the signs and symptoms of leukaemia here or download our symptoms card here.


5. Because people are unaware of the symptoms, they aren’t always diagnosed as early as they could be. Early diagnosis saves lives.

Around 38% of leukaemia cases are diagnosed as an emergency, much higher than the average for all types of cancer (22%). This is because of the relative rarity of leukaemia and the non-specific symptoms.

Leukaemia CARE have developed online training modules to help GPs develop their knowledge, so they can diagnose leukaemia sooner.


Now that you are leukaemia aware, why not help others spot the signs and symptoms of leukaemia by sharing this with your family and friends on social media?

Don’t forget to tag us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram!

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