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Acute Lymphocytic Leukemia - Page 3

A spinal tap (lumbar puncture) was ordered to see if the leukemic cells had crossed the blood-brain barrier. There were many lymphoblasts in the spinal fluid. In ALL the leukemic cells are often harbored in the meninges.

  • 18. What is a spinal tap or lumbar puncture?
  • 19. Why is a lumbar puncture performed?
  • 20. What is cerebral spinal fluid?
  • 21. What chemicals or constituents can be measured from the cerebral spinal fluid?

View Lumbar Puncture for Children with Cancer video

Noah was started on chemotherapy which would kill as many of the cancer cells as possible. He was also given a transfusion of 2 units of packed red blood cells to help alleviate his anemic condition. Noah was released from the hospital but continued chemotherapy treatments weekly. After 3 weeks of chemotherapy treatments, Noah developed a fever of 102°F. Examination revealed coarse breath sounds in the right anterior chest. An order was sent to the radiology technician for a series of chest radiographs.

  • 22. What is chemotherapy? How is it given? What are some of the side effects of chemotherapy?
  • 23. Why did Noah develop a fever?
  • 24. Why would the physician order a chest x-ray?
  • 25. What is a chest x-ray?
  • 26. What abnormalities can be detected from a chest x-ray?