Childhood AML

Diagnosing Childhood AML

Tests that examine the blood and bone marrow are used to detect and diagnose childhood AML. Tests and procedures that may be used include:
  • Physical exam and history
  • Complete blood count
  • Blood chemistry studies
  • Peripheral blood smear
  • Biopsy
  • Bone marrow aspiration and biopsy
  • Tumor biopsy
  • Lymph node biopsy
  • Cytogenetic analysis
  • Immunophenotyping
  • Lumbar puncture.

Physical Exam and History

An exam of the body to check general signs of health, including checking for signs of disease, such as lumps or anything else that seems unusual. A history of the patient's health habits and past illnesses and treatments is generally also taken during the exam.


Complete Blood Count (CBC)

This is a procedure in which a sample of blood is drawn and checked for the following:


  • The number of red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets
  • The amount of hemoglobin (the protein that carries oxygen) in the red blood cells
  • The portion of the sample made up of red blood cells.


Blood Chemistry Studies

This is a procedure in which a blood sample is checked to measure the amounts of certain substances released into the blood by organs and tissues in the body. An unusual (higher or lower than normal) amount of a substance can be a sign of disease in the organ or tissue that produces it.


Peripheral Blood Smear

In this procedure, a sample of blood is checked for blast cells, the number and kinds of white blood cells, the number of platelets, and changes in the shape of the blood cells.



This is the removal of cells or tissues so that they can be viewed under a microscope to check for signs of cancer.

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