What is Pediatric Hematology and Oncology?
Blood, which carries the things organs and tissues need such as vitamins, hormones, oxygen and nutrients, is a vital fluid. The branch that deals with blood and bone marrow is hematology. Hematology, also known as "blood science", diagnoses and treats problems or diseases in the blood. Since some diseases known as blood diseases occur in childhood, pediatric hematology is very important.
Childhood cancers is a group of diseases that occur with the uncontrolled proliferation of body cells, can develop in different regions and spread throughout the body through circulation, disrupting health and threatening life. It is among the most common cause of death in children.
Early diagnosis is of great importance in both blood and cancer-related diseases. Since some diseases can cause early diagnosis with their findings, it is necessary to apply to the pediatric hematology and oncology unit in case of any negative signs observed in the child. Children are treated under the supervision of doctors who are experts in these branches, and it is aimed to return them to a healthy life as soon as possible. For all children from newborn to adult age, in the pediatric hematology and oncology unit; services are provided on diagnosis, treatment, control, screening and prevention methods.
Which Diseases Does Pediatric Hematology and Oncology Treat?
Blood loss, excessive red blood cell destruction and insufficient red blood cell production are among the main causes of anemia. Anemia, which can also be caused by a deficiency of folic acid, iron and vitamin B12, can sometimes be caused by a decrease in the hormones necessary for the production of red blood cells. It can occur in people who are pregnant as well as those with anemia, cancer and chronic diseases.
Anemia is one of the most common diseases in children as well as in all ages. It can be seen in the first 6 months in children born prematurely or not fed with iron, but it can also occur at other ages. It is necessary to pay attention to the nutrition of children and the vitamins they take during the growth stage.
The main symptoms of anemia are fatigue, pallor and weakness. Loss of appetite, bruising when crying, difficulty in swallowing and stagnation in development are also common symptoms among children. Children's iron deficiency can affect their intelligence and perception skills as well as anemia.
In addition to the necessary tests in the diagnosis of anemia, the family and child's history is also very important. The answers to questions such as whether there is a kin marriage, anemia in the family, nutrition, chronic diarrhea, and exchange transfusion are among the questions asked to diagnose anemia.
Mediterranean Anemia (Thalassemia)
Mediterranean anemia, which threatens especially Mediterranean countries, is a blood disease. Turkey is among these countries. While there are 4 thousand 500 people with Mediterranean anemia in Turkey, 1 million 300 thousand people are carriers.
Mediterranean anemia, which is a preventable disease, is transmitted only from mother and father to child. Even if one of the family members is a carrier, the rate of not getting the same disease is half. In countries with a high number of carriers, it is highly likely that both carriers will marry. Before this disease, which is especially seen in children born from kin marriages, both parties need to have the necessary blood tests done and decide accordingly.
Growth retardation is observed in children with moderate and severe Mediterranean anemia. In addition, bones fracturing quickly, and enlargement of the spleen, heart and liver also occur. Symptoms such as a pale appearance, loss of appetite, dark urine, jaundice can also be seen.
Hemophilia, which occurs when the blood does not clot normally, is also among the blood diseases. People with hemophilia, which is a bleeding disorder, experience a longer bleeding time than other healthy individuals in case of injury or bleeding. Bleeding can sometimes occur not only outside but also inside. This causes damage to organs and tissues.
Hemophilia is an inherited disease. Children who inherit this disease from their parents are born with hemophilia. Findings in each patient may be different. Symptoms that may vary according to the level of the disease include bleeding inside or outside the body, as well as unexplained nosebleeds, non-stop bleeding after circumcision, blood in the urine or stool, and non-stop bleeding after tooth extraction.
•Diseases related to blood cells (erythrocytes, platelets and leukocytes); such as leukocytosis, leukopenia, neutropenia, thrombocytopenia, immune thrombocytopenia, thrombocytosis.
•Bleeding Diseases; hemophilia, von willebrand disease,
Leukemia is the uncontrolled proliferation or loss of function of stem cells in the bone marrow and the spread of these cells to the bone marrow, lymph nodes, spleen, liver, central nervous system and brain. Leukemia, also called blood or bone marrow cancer, is the first among cancers occurring in children. Although leukemia can be seen at any age, it increases between the ages of 2 and 5 years.
The causes of leukemia are not fully known. However, it is seen in the tests that radiation, genetic predisposition, chemicals and some viral diseases cause leukemia. Symptoms of leukemia in children include anemia, weakness, loss of appetite, bone pain in the legs, bleeding from the nose and gums, bleeding under the skin and fever.
•Diagnosis and treatment of childhood benign tumors and hemangiomas
•Diagnosis and treatment of childhood lymphoma and solid tumors (brain tumor, neuroblastoma, Wilms tumor, bone tumors),
•Follow-up of diseases with high tumor risk