`Cause I live and breathe this Philadelphia freedom

I have been learning about this so I could understand the science behind my diagnosis. I was piecing it together based upon the blood tests that were done and looking up each component. I was getting the puzzle pieces but the whole puzzle was not coming together clearly. This has consolidated a small part of it and I find it simple and well written. Of course, there is more to learn.

While driving in the car last night, it just hit me. "I have Leukemia. I don't feel like I have Leukemia."

What was I thinking? What did I think it should feel like? I realize that some people don't get diagnosed until their disease is highly advanced and they have a lot of horrible symptoms. I guess it is a good thing I have so many other diagnoses going on all the time that doctor's visits and blood tests are a commonality in my life. Therefore, early diagnosis. It's no wonder I don't feel like I have Leukemia. I feel sick all the time anyway. How would I notice any difference?

Though, in hindsight I can see how some of my symptoms have increased over the last two years. Now, it seems to fit that these increased symptoms can be contributed to the CML. The one symptom that was driving me nuts, and really didn't have a correlation was the NIGHT SWEATS!!

This information is borrowed from another site. The link is posted below. I don't think I agree with the last statement as I have read elsewhere some information about possible causes, exposure to benzene is one of them. I most certainly have had extreme exposure due to swimming in the chemicals of Love Canal, which floated down the Niagara River in my own backyard for the first 14 years of my life. It is also thought to be a part of the reason that I had chondrosarcoma bone cancer in my twenties, as well. Damn! it gets complicated.

What Causes Chronic Myeloid Leukemia (CML)?

  • To understand what causes most cases of CML, you need to know about your cells. Every cell in your body has the same DNA—the genetic material you inherited from your parents. DNA makes up your chromosomes, and contains genes that control the activity of the cell

  • Each time a cell divides, its DNA is copied into the new cells. Errors can occur during the duplication that affect the genes and may lead to the creation of cancer cells instead of normal cells

  • Chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) occurs when pieces of two different chromosomes break off and attach to each other
Philadelphia chromosomes

  • The new chromosome is called the Philadelphia-positive chromosome or Ph+ chromosome

  • The Philadelphia-positive (Ph+) chromosome contains an abnormal gene called the bcr-abl gene

  • This gene produces the BCR-ABL protein, which causes your body to make too many abnormal white blood cells
  • Ordinarily, the body is able to tightly control the number of new white blood cells
  • In chronic myeloid leukemia (CML), BCR-ABL acts like a switch stuck in the "on" position, signaling white blood cells to continuously grow

  • There is no known reason for the genetic changes that cause chronic myeloid leukemia (CML)

This information comes from

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