Blood Disorders:

Acute:
Sudden onset of symptoms or disease.
Anemia:
A condition of the blood caused by a deficiency of red blood cells.
Antibody:
A protein substance normally formed by the body to help defend it against disease. Excessive production of an abnormal antibody can cause disease.
Antigen:
A protein that prompts the body to produce antibodies.
Anti-inflammatory:
A medication that helps to reduce inflammation of tissue in the body.
Autoimmune Disorder:
Diseases caused by the immune system producing antibodies against the tissue of its own body.
Basophils:
A type of white blood cell that plays a special role in allergic reactions.
B-Lymphocytes:
A type of lymphocyte, or white blood cell, used by the immune system. B-cells secrete antibodies into the body fluid to fight foreign substances that cause infections, disease, or poisoning.
Biological Therapy:
A treatment that stimulates the body's own immune system to fight cancer or blood disorders.
Blood Count:
A blood test used to determine the number of the various types of blood cells.
Blood Transfusions:
Infusion of blood or blood components directly into the bloodstream to remedy blood loss or to treat anemia.
Blood-clotting Factors:
Components of plasma that are involved in the clotting of blood.
Bone Marrow:
The spongy substance in the inner cavity of bone which produces red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets.
Bone Marrow Biopsy:
A test where a needle is inserted into the bone of the hip or sternum (breastbone) to obtain a marrow sample for microscopic study and examination.
Chemotherapy:
A treatment using medicines.
Deciliter:
1/10 of a liter.
Eosinophils:
A type of white blood cell that plays a role in allergic reactions to foreign substances.
Erythrocytes (Red Blood Cells):
The cells that carry oxygen.
Essential Thrombocythemia:
A disorder that causes an overproduction of platelets.
External Beam Radiation Therapy:
Treating cancer and other disorders with the use of radiation. Sometimes it is called radiation therapy.
Extramedullary Hematopoiesis:
Formation of blood cells outside of the bone marrow, such as in the spleen.
Femtoliters:
1/1,000,000,000,000,000 of a liter (this is very small!).
Genetic Disorder:
A disorder passed down in genes through generations of a family.
Gout:
A painful inflammation in the joints, usually caused by an excessive amount of uric acid in the body.
Gram:
A unit of mass, approximately equivalent to the weight of a paperclip.
Hematologist:
A doctor who specializes in the study of blood and bone marrow.
Hormonal Therapy:
A treatment that uses the body's hormones to treat cancer. This can be done by medication, surgical removal of the hormone-producing glands, or radiation therapy.
Idiopathic Myelofibrosis (MF):
A disorder that causes the bone marrow to gradually be replaced with fibrous scar tissue and the spleen or liver to become enlarged.
Idiopathic Thrombocytopenic Purpura:
A disorder that causes the immune system to make antibodies that destroy platelets, a type of blood cell. When the platelets are destroyed, a person is more susceptible to easy bruising and bleeding.
Immune System:
A complex group of cells and substances that protect the body from infection and disease.
Immunotherapy:
A treatment that stimulates the body's immune system to fight cancer.
Intravenous:
Into a vein.
Leukocytes:
White blood cells.
Liter:
Approximately equal to a quart.
Lymphocytes:
A type of white blood cell. Three important kinds of lymphocytes are T-cells, B-cells, and Natural Killer Cells. T-cells attack and destroy virus-infected cells, foreign tissue and cancer cells; B-cells produce antibodies that help destroy foreign substances; Natural Killer cells destroy cancer cells and virus-infected cells.
Microangiopathy:
The clotting of blood in the small blood vessels of organs.
Microliter:
1/100,000 of a liter. In a blood test, a microliter is a single drop of blood.
Monoclonal antibody:
Monoclonal antibodies are a type of biological therapy produced in the laboratory. In ITP and macroglobuliemia, monoclonal antibodies are used to decrease the number of cells producing inappropriate antibodies.
Monocytes:
A type of white blood cell.
Neutrophils:
A mature white blood cell that fights bacterial infections. Neutrophils are also called segmented neutrophils or segs.
Petechiae:
Small areas of pinpoint bleeding on the skin. This can be due to low platelet counts.
Phlebotomy:
The removal of blood from a vein.
Picograms:
1/100,000,000,000 of a gram (this is very small!).
Plasma:
The fluid part of blood.
Plasma Exchange:
In plasma exchange, blood is filtered through a machine that removes plasma and replaces it with plasma from healthy blood donors.
Plasmapheresis:
During this procedure, blood is filtered through a machine that removes the antibody-containing plasma and replaces it with a substitute. Plasmapheresis can be used to temporarily reduce the amount of antibodies in the blood.
Plateletpheresis:
A blood bank procedure that removes platelets from the blood.
Platelets (Thrombocytes):
A blood cell that assists in blood clotting. Patients are at risk to bleed if the platelet count is less than 50,000.
Polycythemia Vera (PV):
A type of blood disorder that causes an excess of red blood cells. Some patients may also have an increased number of white blood cells and platelets.
Radioactive:
Giving off high-dose energy in the form of particles. Radioactive substances can be used in the treatment of some blood disorders.
Red Blood Cells (Erythrocytes):
The blood cells that carry oxygen and are responsible for the red color of the blood.
Splenectomy:
Surgical removal of the spleen.
Thrombocytes (Platelets):
Cells used to make the blood clot.
Thrombotic Thrombocytopenic Purpura (TTP):
A disorder of multiple clots in small blood vessels of many organs of the body.
Ultraviolet Light:
Light that is beyond the visible spectrum.
Waldenstrom's Macroglobulinemia:
A rare disease that starts in the bone marrow and causes a rapid growth of B-lymphocytes, a type of white blood cell.
White Blood Cells:
Blood cells used by the immune system to fight bacteria and viruses.

Cancer Center Staff