Leukaemia is a cancer that begins in the bone marrow, leading to the over-production of white blood cells. A full blood count (FBC) can clearly indicate the presence of leukaemia.
Some symptoms of leukaemia are those commonly caused by less serious conditions, such as lymphadenopathy, fatigue, bruising or infections. However, when symptoms are persistent or a cause cannot be attributed, a full blood count can clearly imdicate if leukaemia is present.
NICE NG12 guidelines advise considering a very urgent full blood count (within 48 hours) to assess for leukaemia in adults presenting with any of the following: pallor, persistent fatigue, unexplained fever, unexplained persistent or recurrent infection, generalised lymphadenopathy, hepatosplenomegaly or unexplained bleeding, bruising or petechaie.
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