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Blood cancer in pregnancy – Hope delivered at Bharath Cancer Hospital

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Mysuru: 24 year old woman suffering from Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL) successfully delivers a baby at Bharath Hospital and Institute of Oncology (BHIO).

Addressing media persons at MDJA here on Thursday Dr Abhilash G H , Consultant Medical Oncology, BHIO said “Cancer is a serious disease and blood cancers generally has poor prognosis. Cancer per say in pregnancy is a rare presentation seen in 1 out of 3000 pregnancies. Blood cancer in pregnancy is even rare with an incidence of 1 case in 75000 to 1 lakh pregnancies. Acute Myeloblastic Leukemia is the most common followed by Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia. Leukemia in pregnancy is a challenging condition with both mothers and baby having high risk of mortality. Treatment of blood cancer in pregnancy is associated with risk of intrauterine death, abortion and risk of organ malformations in the fetus. Patients diagnosed in the first trimester of pregnancy are managed with medical termination of pregnancy. Patients who are diagnosed in the second or third trimester of pregnancy are generally managed with combination chemotherapy followed by cesarean section at or after 32 weeks.

“We at Bharath Cancer Hospital treated a 24 year old woman in her first pregnancy, diagnosed as a case of ALL in her second trimester with 90 percent blasts. Patient received induction chemotherapy followed by cesarean at 31 weeks. Patient tolerated the treatment well and delivered a baby weighing about 2 kgs with no congenital malformations. Treatment of acute leukemia during pregnancy remains greater challenges than treating solid tumors or lymphoma due to the requirement of higher doses of chemotherapy.

Oncologists over the last decade have started treating pregnant patients in second and third trimesters with combination chemotherapy yielding improved outcomes. There is a solution to even the rarest of disease if properly diagnosed and treated. We would like to thank Dr Poornima, obstetrician for doing timely cesarean section in high risk patient. We also thank Dr YS Madhavi, Medical Superintendent, BHIO for all the inputs, Dr Ashwin, Pediatrician for taking care of the baby in neonatal ICU and all the staff and management of BHIO and mission hospital” added Dr Abhilash.

-Team Mysoorunews



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