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Advice needed & question about low blood platelets

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pj123 View Drop Down
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    Posted: Feb 24 2017 at 11:19pm
Hello, I came across this forum when I was reading about Triple negative breast cancer for my aunt (in India) who was diagnosed with breast cancer in mid 2015. I wanted some advice for her case. She is 52 years old and was operated for Right breast cancer in may 2015 (ER and PR Negative, HR 2neu - Negative). She then underwent adjuvant Chemotherapy - 4 FEC followed by 4 Carbo + Taxol and 25 radiations. In may 2016, cancer recurred then radiation and chemotherapy (Carbo + GEM) was given, during this period cancer went metastatic. Currently, she is undergoing chemotherapy (Gematibine + Cisplatin). The latest PET CT report suggests increase of a lymph node and decrease in few other lymph nodes. Test for Androgen receptor was also done, outcome was negative.

The doctor told that normal dose of chemotherapy drug could not be administered as her blood platelets count is low. After giving a chemotherapy dose the platelets count reduce significantly and the body is slow at recovering the count of platelets. 

I wanted to know if anyone had any similar experience. We are not sure about what else can be done in this case ? Can something be done in regards to improve the platelets count ? Also wondering if there are any other better options available in US for this type of cases ? Any suggestions/help would be greatly appreciated. Thank You.
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Postive3negative View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote Postive3negative Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Feb 25 2017 at 12:23am
Hi there,

Yes, I had a similar problem with platelets. I'm also a woman in my 50's.

I was given an injection of neulasta that I was required to self administer a couple of days after my chemotherapy. I could also have taken it to the local doctor and had a nurse administer it but I had no trouble doing it myself after the first one. I'm in Australia so I'm not sure if it's called the same thing in the USA. It's routinely prescribed here for anyone whose too far from a hospital to make it there if they develop neutropenia.

I also found this link for you with ideas for increasing platelets: http://www.thrombocyte.com/how-to-increase-platelet-count/
Some of these strategies might help.

My approach to keeping my blood healthy included avoiding all alcohol, eating more red meat that I usually would and eating liver once a fortnight. I found that if I put it in curry I could manage it. It's very high in iron. I also ate as much leafy greens as I could manage and put fresh herbs on everything.

Another thing people often overlook when it comes to blood health is the importance of staying well hydrated. If we don't have enough water in our system then everything slows down to protect us, including the systems that clean and regenerate our blood.

I hope this advice helps.

Love and gentle hugs to both of you.

Meg




Find me on Wordpress at https://positive3neg.wordpress.com
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Tulips View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote Tulips Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Feb 25 2017 at 8:11pm
Hi PJ,

What a good niece or nephew you are!

From my recollection, there are 3 types of blood counts that they watch for, all with different solutions.  When red blood cells are running low, you can get a blood transfusion to boost them.  When white blood cells (aka neutrophils) are low, the neulasta/neupogen shots mentioned above help.  And when platelets are low, you can get a platelet transfusion.  I hear less often of people getting platelet transfusions--maybe it's more expensive/harder to come by?  Platelets are important for clotting.  It makes sense that they are being cautious.

All of the advice above sounds helpful!  Totally agree on the hydration, leafy greens, herbs, etc.  I was advised to cut out red meat for an anti-cancer diet, however.  Red meat does provide iron and can help with normal anemia, but my understanding is that the anemia people get when their diet is short of iron-rich foods is different from anemia when your chemotherapy is killing off your red blood cells.  My doctor said in this case, eating more iron-rich foods doesn't really help.  I'm not an expert, though!  No matter what, the leafy greens provide iron and are generally very healthy.  But this issue of anemia/red blood cells/iron is different from platelets, of course.

Unfortunately, I am not aware of any foods that improve platelet counts, however.

Good luck to your aunt.  Take care!

Tulips
Dx April 2015 IDC TN 2.2 cm, Grade 3, Chemo started May 2015: Taxol/Carbo then AC, Lx with SNB Nov 2015, 33 Rad Dec 2015-Feb 2016. 6 months Capecitabine starting March 2016
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pj123 View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pj123 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Feb 26 2017 at 10:36am
Thank you Postive3Negative and Tulips for sharing, I will discuss this with my aunt and hopefully things will improve. Thanks again.
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gordon15 View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote gordon15 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Feb 26 2017 at 8:31pm
We / my wife takes /take VitB-12 500mg and Folic Acid 400mg, to boost red blood cells, ask your doctor about it .
wife: IDC/Lobular Stage2B 2008 lumpectomy/TAC+rads
TNBC Stage 3A/w/metaplastic/squamous Nov2015 Carboplatin-Gemzar chemo/masectomy Taxolchemo+rads 4-16
PET scan stable 9-2016/ 1-2017
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