Leukemia affects the cells in the bone marrow. There are different types of leukemia. Acute myeloid leukemia is one of them.

Younger adults can also develop the condition. This includes pregnant people.

We will cover the details of the disease in the baby. This includes how common it is, how it is diagnosed and treated, and so on. Continue reading to learn more.

Acute myeloid leukemia (AML) is one of the four main types of leukemia. The other three are:

According to the American Cancer Society (ACS), AML is one of the most common types of leukemia in adults. However, it’s still a rare type of cancer in the adult population, making up only about 1% of all cancers in adults.

Acute vs. chronic leukemia

Acute leukemias progress quickly. If they are not treated, they can quickly become very serious. The progress of chronic leukemias is slower.

Myeloid vs. lymphocytic

Red blood cells, platelets, and certain white blood cells can be produced from bone marrow stem cells.

Lymphocytic leukemias can be caused by bone marrow stem cells. T cells and B cells are examples of lymphocytes.

It is possible to have a baby with AML. This is a rare occurrence.

According to information from the ACS, the average age of diagnosis for AML is about 68 years. AML is uncommon in adults prior to the age of 45, which makes up most of a person’s childbearing years.

The true incidence of any leukemia in pregnancy is unknown. Researchers have estimated that it occurs in 1 out of 75,000 to 100,000 pregnancies. Acute leukemias are most common, with AML making up about two-thirds of diagnoses.

A pregnant person can also be at risk of AML during pregnancy. It can have a serious impact on a fetus. The effects of leukemia can lead to more serious problems.

Additionally, chemotherapy, which is often used to treat AML, can also cause potential adverse effects such as congenital defects, There was a loss of a baby., and fetal death. This is especially true when treatment is given in the first trimester.

As the number of leukemia cells in the bone marrow increases, they begin to crowd out healthy RBCs, WBCs, and platelets. When this occurs, the counts of these healthy blood cells begin to drop, leading to the symptoms of AML.

The signs and symptoms of a disease.

According to a 2021 paper, some of the early acute leukemia symptoms such as fatigue and The breath was very thin. can be mistaken for symptoms of pregnancy. This can lead to a delay in diagnosis and treatment.

In most cases, AML arises due to mutations that happen in myeloid stem cells in the bone marrow. As we mentioned earlier, these cells can go on to become RBCs, platelets, and certain types of WBCs.

“The growth and division of myeloid stem cells can be caused by certain genetic alterations. They don’t develop into healthy blood cells.”

These cells become immature, leukemic WBC called a myeloblast. You can see these cells as leukemia cells or blasts.

Leukemia cells crowd out healthy blood cells when they accumulate in the bone marrow. This leads to many of the symptoms of leukemia.

The diagnosis of the disease in pregnant people is similar to that of nonpregnant people. A doctor will take your medical history and perform a physical exam.

Additional tests will be ordered after that. These can be used to determine the cause of your symptoms or to rule out a diagnosis of leukemia.

Blood tests

The tests use a sample of blood from your arm. There are several blood tests that can be used.

  • complete blood count, which measures the levels of different types of WBCs in your blood
  • peripheral blood smear, which looks at a smeared drop of blood to assess the shape, size, and number of different blood cells
  • blood chemistry tests, which can inform your doctor about your liver and kidney function as well as the levels of glucose, electrolytes, and fats in your blood
  • blood clotting tests, which can help to identify problems with blood clotting

Bone marrow aspiration and biopsy

Bone marrow aspiration and biopsy involve the collection of samples from the bone marrow using special needles. These samples can then be used to look for leukemia cells. If found, leukemia cells can be further characterized using:

  • immunophenotyping, which uses special dyes to look for specific markers on leukemia cells
  • genetic analysis, which looks for certain changes in the chromosomes and genes of leukemia cells

Imaging tests

Since it is a blood cancer, it is not associated with the formation of solid tumors. If you have other causes of your symptoms, you may want to use an imager.

Some types of imaging aren’t safe for pregnant people. However, according to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, both MRI scans and ultrasound aren’t associated with risk and may be used when they can provide clinical benefit.

The health of the pregnant person and the fetus must be taken into account when treating AML during pregnancy. Treatment must be managed by a multidisciplinary team.

Because AML can grow and progress quickly, immediate treatment is typically recommended. However, the timing at which the diagnosis occurs in the pregnancy is also very important. Researchers estimate that:

“Let’s look at what this means for treatment of the AML.”

First trimester

AML treatment in the first trimester is associated with an increased risk of There was a loss of a baby. and congenital defects. Due to the easy bleeding associated with AML, experiencing a There was a loss of a baby. can cause potentially dangerous complications.

A pregnant person will be educated about the risks associated with AML and its treatment in the first trimester. They may also be counseled about choosing to terminate the pregnancy.

Second or third trimester

“Congenital defects are not usually associated with treatment of AML in the second or third trimester. This doesn’t mean that all risks are eliminated.”

According to a 2015 article, although delivery of a healthy baby is the most common outcome, treatment at this point in the pregnancy can still carry a risk of:

A person will be counseled about the risks of treatment. The risks of delaying treatment, which can seriously affect the health of the pregnant person and the fetus, will be discussed.

Treatment in the second or third trimester typically involves chemotherapy. An example of a drug regimen that’s used is daunorubicin with cytarabine. The health of the fetus will also be closely monitored throughout treatment.

“The dosages of drugs must be monitored. A person’s body weight changes during pregnancy.”

If a person is later than 32 weeks into their pregnancy, it may be recommended to deliver the baby prior to starting chemotherapy.

Supportive care

“Supportive care doesn’t treat the disease. It can help to lower the symptoms of the disease. Explanations of supportive care can be found here.”

  • Blood transfusion: Blood transfusions can be used if you have anemia due to a low RBC count.
  • Growth factors: Growth factors that stimulate the growth of new RBCs can also be given for anemia. These are safe to use in pregnant people.
  • Antibiotics and antifungals: Antibiotics and antifungals can help to treat an infection or lower your risk of getting an infection. A doctor can prescribe you medications that are safe to use during pregnancy.
  • Leukapheresis: If you have high levels of leukemia cells in your blood, leukapheresis may be used. This passes your blood through a special machine to remove the WBCs, including leukemia cells, and then returns the blood to your body. It’s thought to pose minimal risk during pregnancy.
  • Pain medications: If you’re experiencing pain related to AML or its treatment, a doctor can prescribe you medications for pain that are safe for pregnant people.

Anyone can develop the disease. There are several known risk factors for the condition. Some may contribute to the development of AML in the baby.

“Know that having risk factors forAML doesn’t mean you’ll develop it in the future. It means that you are more at risk than people without risk factors.”

Many factors can affect your outlook for AML in pregnancy.

  • The time in which you are diagnosed.
  • How far has your AML gone?
  • The characteristics of your AML.
  • Which decisions are made regarding the treatment of leukemia during pregnancy.
  • Your age and health.

There is little research that looks into the outcomes of people who are diagnosed with a blood disorder during their pregnancies. We have some data that says something.

A 2015 review looked at published data between the years 1969 and 2014. It included 85 fetuses from 83 people who were diagnosed with AML during pregnancy and received chemotherapy.

The complete remission rates in people who are pregnant are similar to those in people who are not pregnant. The second and third trimesters had fewer fetal problems than the first.

One 2021 study looked at acute leukemia diagnosed during pregnancy between the years 2010 to 2019. It included 21 pregnant people with acute leukemia, including 18 with AML. Of these 18 people, the researchers found that:

  • A group of people delivered a baby.
  • Six people terminated their pregnancies.
  • one person experienced a There was a loss of a baby.
  • Four people died before they were treated.

Deliveries of healthy babies included both full-term and premature deliveries. of the babies exposed to chemotherapy had any congenital defects. Long-term follow-up found that these babies were growing and developing typically.

10 people with the disease had a complete remission after treatment. The seven individuals who died and three who were still alive at the end of the follow-up period were all from the same area. Four people died of Acute Myeloid Leukemia that was resistant to treatment.

Depending on the outcome of your treatment, you may be able to get pregnant again after you’ve had AML. However, it’s important to remember that treatment with chemotherapy can potentially affect your fertility.

It is important to have an open discussion with your doctor about fertility when you are considering how to manage your AML. They can give you an idea of what to expect.

A doctor can also advise you on the steps that you can take to preserve your fertility. This may include things such as egg or ovarian tissue freezing.

A 2014 article notes that younger individuals are less at risk of having their fertility impacted by chemotherapy treatments. However, the authors also note that cancer survivors are at a higher risk of preterm delivery and giving birth to babies with low birth weight.

“Let’s discuss a few more questions about the topic of pregnancy and AML.”

What other types of leukemia can happen in pregnancy?

Any type of leukemia can be found during a pregnant woman. Acute leukemias, particularly the one called theAML, are the most common.

Can AML be detected early?

According to the ACS, there are currently no screening tests that can help to identify AML early on. If you have risk factors for AML, it’s especially important to receive regular medical checkups that include bloodwork.

Can I breastfeed if I’m being treated for AML?

Chemotherapy drugs and other medications you’re taking for your AML can be present in breast milk. As such, avoid breastfeeding while being treated for AML.

Leukemia is rare in pregnant women. Acute leukemias, particularlyAML, are the most common when it happens.

Due to the fact that it grows quickly, it can have serious effects on a pregnant person and a fetus. Treatment for the disease that develops during pregnancy must be started as soon as possible.

When the baby is diagnosed with leukemia, the type of management that is recommended will be different. A doctor can help you understand the outcomes associated with each option so that you can make an educated decision.