The beginning symptoms of acute lymphoblastic leukemia can, unfortunately, be quite vague, at least in the beginning. These vague symptoms include fever, night sweats, fatigue, and loss of appetite or weight. If the patient has a shortage of red blood cells due to ALL, their symptoms can mimic those of anemia, and include shortness of breath, dizziness, feeling cold, lightheadedness, and weakness. A shortage of white blood cells in this condition causes an increase in the frequency of infections, and often fever as well. Other symptoms of acute lymphoblastic leukemia include trouble breathing, joint or bone pain, blurred vision, headaches, issues with balance, and enlarged lymph nodes (e.g., in the groin, neck, or armpits). These symptoms vary based on where cancer spreads in the patient.
Continue reading to learn about who is most at risk for developing acute lymphoblastic leukemia.