How Leukapheresis Helps A Person's Stroke Risk

Posted on: 21 May 2020

Leukemia is a very dangerous type of cancer and is one that must be properly assessed and treated ASAP to minimize its impact on a person's life. However, this disease is one that can trigger a myriad of other conditions that may complication a person's treatment, such as a higher risk of stroke. As a result, it is important to consider leukapheresis in this situation.

Leukemia May Increase a Person's Stroke Risk

Leukemia often triggers a heavy increase of dangerous blood cells in a person's bloodstream, cells that will rapidly reproduce and potentially spread cancer further into a person's body. Unfortunately, all of these extra cells also have a nasty way of causing constriction in a person's cardiovascular system, constriction that can make their blood slow down or even stop if it gets thick enough.

Unfortunately, if this blockage stops in the brain, a person may experience a dangerous stroke that could threaten their lives even further. Even worse, this higher risk of stroke may be a problem for treatment because it may interfere with the effectiveness of chemotherapy. As a result, leukapheresis is a beneficial way of decreasing this risk and helping a person recover more effectively.

How Leukapheresis Can Help

Leukaphresis is a unique treatment option that often helps those with leukemia avoid this problem. It starts by hooking a person up to an IV an testing their level of leukemia cells in the blood. When the doctor has an idea of how much must be removed, the carefully remove a certain volume of blood from a person's body, using a machine that takes out the white blood cells – which is where the leukemia cells will be located.

After this process is done, the plasma – which is separated from the other blood cells – is returned to the body. In this way, a person can get this care multiple times in a week without experiencing anemia. The benefits are huge – by eliminating all of these excessive leukemia cells, a person decreases their chance of stroke or heart attack by taking out potential blockage from these cells.

Just as importantly, this care option helps out with chemotherapy by carefully eliminating cells that would otherwise need to be destroyed by this treatment. In this way, it is possible to get a myriad of different benefits that make leukapheresis a beneficial care option. And those with a higher risk of stroke from other conditions must get this care option, if possible.