How to boost white blood counts during chemotherapy for breast cancer?

Growth factors. If your blood counts are severely low then use of growth factor injections(neulasta (pegfilgrastim) or neupogen) can help boost the recovery of your blood counts after chemotherapy.
"growth factors" Your oncologist can use bone marrow growth factors ("gcsf") to stimulate production of white blood cells. These drugs, developed and tested in the 1980's, became available in the ~spring of 1991 and (along with drugs to treat/prevent nausea) completely changed the field of oncology. It went from being a mostly inpatient discipline, to one almost entirely practiced in the outpatient setting.
Growth factors. There are medications to increase the white and red blood cell counts if they are affected by chemotherapy. Your oncologist can discuss them with you. There are specific guidelines for their use.

Related Questions

Dear doctor. Can I use kelp supplement of GNC trademark during chemotherapy for breast cancer ER+ /PR+ -HER2-, and is it safe to take wheat germ oil?

Should be safe but: Nutritional support has been shown to both reduce the toxicity and improve effectiveness of chemotherapy. This should be safe but since I don't know which meds you will be given check this chart to be sure: http://tinyurl.com/lnmoojl Also see http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17283738 and http://tinyurl.com/l9pdmjd A healthy diet is important too. See http://tinyurl.com/ov7zsq3 Good luck! Read more...

Is weight gain common during breast cancer treatments? Will drugs or chemotherapy for breast cancer make me gain weight? .

Some people gain wt. The treatment itself does not cause weight gain. But there are changes in taste that may make you eat more especailly after the chemotherapy has been completed and stopped. So watch that you eat no more than normal. Then there is little risk of weight gain. Read more...
Yes. Very common. I tell most of my patients with breast cancer to expect to gain weight. Multiple reasons, medications, decreased activity. Hope this helps. Read more...

How can I fight chemotherapy induced nausea during breast cancer treatment?

Medication. Begin with basic nausea medicines such as Compazine or phenergan, (promethazine) if not improved then more expensive medications such as Zofran or others. It also helps if patients avoid smells or foods that seem to trigger the symptom. Sometimes even perfumes and non food smells may be an issue and you can avoid them if suspected. Foods like crackers, 7-up, ginger ale or ginger root can help. Read more...
Stay hydrated. Eat ginger chew gum and have your md supply you with one or more rxs & do these things before symptoms develop( you'll learn to predict). Read more...
Speak to you doc. Speak to your treating oncologist, they can prescribe different medications to help with the nausea. Read more...

Is there a less toxic alternative to chemotherapy for breast cancer treatment?

Yes. We look at each cancer's profile - estrogen / Progesterone /her-2 receptors as well as histology-size, grade , blood vessel invasioneg then the patient herself age menopause status-if recepto pos. And older pt. Ie postmenopausal we often treat with hormonal therapy - pills - that have a less severe side effect profile but still not without problems - osteoporosis uterine cancer catarats. Read more...
Hormonal Therapy. The vast majority (80-85%) of breast cancer is hormone sensitive/driven. Pathology testing can determine if a tumor is er+. Unless otherwise contraindicated, all er+ patients should be considered for hormone therapy. If strongly er+, they may get more benefit from this than from chemotherapy. Specialized testing (oncotype dx) is often used to determine if chemotherapy is still needed in er+ pt. Read more...
Potentially. Brca tx may include chemo, hormones, radiation, bone targeted tx & diet/exercise as "adjvuant" (post surgery) treatment. The combo needed depends on the tumor characteristics (grade, stage, hormone receptor status - er, pr; and her2/neu status). Non chemo tx can include hormones - eg tamoxifen, arimidex, (anastrozole) etc; trastuzumab (herceptin - anti her2 antibody). Optimal therapy may include all those. Read more...
Yes. In some cases hormonal treatment can be as effective as chemotherapy. However if there is benefit from chemotherapy then it would be in addition to hormonal therapy. You should ask what percent benefit chemotherapy would give your circumstance and then decide if it's worth it to you to not accept that benefit. Read more...

How can I support my friend who has undergone chemotherapy for breast cancer?

Do support her. She may need your emotional support and other help. Go meet her and ask if you can help her with any probelms or issues of concern to her. She would appreciate your concern for her welfare and your offer to help her.Just the company of a good friend can be a big morale booster. Read more...

Please tell me what are other options besides chemotherapy for breast cancer?

Depends. Chemo is used when breast cancer has metastasized around the body, especially for tumors without hormone receptors (er/pr). It also is sometimes used to kill any microscopic cells that could grow in the future. Tumors that have er/pr may sometimes be treated with hormone therapy instead. Her2 positive tumors may often be treated with antibodies or pills that target her2 instead of or with chemo. Read more...
It depends. It depends on the type of breast cancer. If positive for estrogen and/or Progesterone receptors ("er" and "pr") there are other options, though in some cases it may not be as good as taking these meds in conjunction with chemo. If stage 4 breast cancer, there are many clinical trials. Again, it depends on the cancer stage, and the markers er/pr, and her2 from the cancer specimen. Read more...

I'm just wondering, if you opt out for chemotherapy for breast cancer what is the process you go through?

Not sure if 'opt. Out' means 'refuse' or 'decide to stop'. Either is a serious decision that requires discussion with 1 or more medical oncologists. The 'oncotype' process defines benefit and risk of chemo in some. However, depending on many factors (size, nodal status, receptors), the consequences vary. Perfect for second or third opinion. Read more...

Hormonal effects of chemotherapy for breast cancer?

Please clarify. It is unclear from your question what you are asking. Most breast cancers are estrogen-sensitive and can be treated with anti-estrogen medication (tamoxifen, aromatase inhibitors). Many women who are peri menopausal when receiving traditional chemotherapy develop ovarian suppression from the chemo and effectively "go into" menopause. I hope this helps. Read more...