Tumor lysis syndrome (TLS) can be a complication of having chemotherapy.
It can be a very serious and sometimes
life-threatening complication most commonly occurring after chemotherapy treatment in patients with leukemia or
high grade lymphoma.
"It is most common during treatment for high grade
lymphoma or acute leukaemia. When the cancer drugs kill off the
cancer cells, the body breaks down the dead cells.
... Chemicals in the cells are suddenly released into
your blood. So the normal balance of chemicals circulating in your
blood suddenly changes. Chemicals such as potassium, sodium,
phosphates and urea have to be kept within very tight limits in your
bloodstream to keep you healthy. Abnormal levels of these chemicals
can upset your heart rhythm and the way your kidneys work."
Medscape - a technical definition - "What is tumor lysis syndrome?
no good definition, but we can define it as metabolic derangement
produced by rapid tumor breakdown as a consequence of therapy. It's
characterized by hyperuricemia due to deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA)
breakdown, hyperkalemia because of cytosol breakdown,
hyperphosphatemia because of protein breakdown, and hypocalcemia
secondary to the hyperphosphatemia.
As phoshate level goes up, serum
calcium goes down. These derangements can result in acute renal
failure secondary to urate nephropathy but also due to xanthine
nephropathy. Also, calcium phosphate can contribute to renal failure.
Cardiac dysrhythmias can occur secondary to
hyperkalemia and hypocalcemia, molecular symptoms such as cramps can
occur secondary to hypocalcemia, and there can be sudden death from
hyperkalemia or hypocalcemia."
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