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A. Schuyler, NP
A. Schuyler, NP, Nurse Practitioner
Category: Health
Satisfied Customers: 16324
Experience:  Board Certified NP, MS, RN. 25 years private practice & hospitalist
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I am worried about childhood leukemia with my 5 year old. He

Customer Question

I am worried about childhood leukemia with my 5 year old. He has been pale lately, with dark circles under his eyes, and some slight bruising. His teacher even noticed how pale he is. His Bruising is less than a quarter size and appears on shins, arms, knees and elbows (really any bony spot) There aren't a lot, but he does always have a bruise of some type. They heal quickly, and he does play rough (wrestling ect..) with his siblings. . He is not lethargic, and sleeps well from 8:30 PM-7:30 AM. He has a great appetite, but is VERY PICKY. He rarely eats meat, and will refuse fruits and vegetables. He has no fevers or unexplained bleeding. He used to be a heavy milk drinker, but now rarely drinks it. I just started him on a children's multi-vitamin with 18mg iron in it. He doesn't have a fever and seems well. Should I be concerned with his paleness and bruising? I've read places that being pale and bruising are often symptoms of leukemia. I've been really worried about him lately.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Health
Expert:  A. Schuyler, NP replied 1 year ago.


Being pale and bruising is also a sign of anemia. I wouldn't worry so much about leukemia, but I would take him to the pediatrician for blood work to determine if he is anemic or not. In addition to vitamins, he may need to improve his diet. While a diet without meat can be healthy, it does require some work to make sure the vegetables and grains provide sufficient nutrition. His pediatrician may want you to consult a registered dietitian who can help you plan meals that are healthy within his food preferences. If he is a fan of smoothies (like most children), you can often hide the good veggies in with what he wants to eat.

Please let me know if you have questions.

Best regards,