"Bug Bite" Turns Out To Be Cancer (Acute Myeloid Leukemia)


I knew the job was dangerous when I took it ...
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Jul 19, 2004
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This story is significant for illustrating how cancer / leukemia can present persistent symptoms that nobody would suspect are cancer / leukemia.
Man's 'Bug Bite' Was Really a Sign of Leukemia

When a man in Ohio developed a swollen lump on his foot, he thought it was just a particularly painful and stubborn bug bite. So he was stunned to find out that it was actually a sign of leukemia, according to news reports.

The man, 46-year-old Mike Balla, first noticed the lump on his foot last August, according to NBC Today. He thought it was a mosquito or spider bite, but soon, it got bigger and more uncomfortable. After going to the doctor, he was told the lump was likely an infected bug bite, and treated with antibiotics.

But the treatment didn't seem to work, so he was given another antibiotic. When that failed as well, Balla ended up in the emergency room (ER). ...

That's when an ER doctor came into his room and told him they were waiting for a consult from an oncologist. Balla at first assumed they had him mixed up with another patient.

"I said, 'I think you have the wrong person. I have a bite on my foot that's infected,'" Balla told Today.

But doctors told him that blood tests revealed he had acute myeloid leukemia, a cancer of the blood and bone marrow cells. It is a rapidly progressing cancer that requires immediate treatment. ...

It is rare for leukemia to look like a bug bite, Dr. Alice Mims, a hematologist at The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center ... But sometimes, cancer cells can get into the skin and result in something that looks like a bug bite ...

Balla was treated with chemotherapy and a bone marrow transplant. He later experienced a cancer relapse, but is now in remission again, according to a statement from the Cleveland Clinic, where Balla was treated. ...
FULL STORY: https://www.livescience.com/bug-bite-leukemia.html