Hematology is an important piece of your comprehensive treatment plan. It is the branch of medical practice concerned with conditions of the blood. These conditions range from the common iron deficiency anemia to cancers originating in the blood, to rare forms of abnormal blood coagulation. The blood as an “organ” literally affects all other organs as it flows through the body and therefore abnormalities in the blood can cause malfunctioning in all other organs.
The blood is composed of particles, cells and sub-cellular elements manufactured in the bone marrow and lymphatic organs. It is also composed of various fluids and proteins. Any of the individual components may be afflicted with abnormalities that require both the diagnostic and therapeutic interventions of a hematologist.
Historically, the first medicines that had any impact on cancer were for leukemia and the lymphatic cancers, Hodgkin’s disease, and lymphomas.
Hematologists and hematopathologists generally work in conjunction to formulate a diagnosis and deliver the most appropriate therapy if needed. Hematology is a distinct subspecialty of internal medicine, separate from but overlapping with the subspecialty of medical oncology.