AHCC and Chemotherapy: Reducing Side Effects in Cancer Patients
The chances are high that someone you know is battling cancer. This means your friend or loved one is more than likely dealing with the side effects of chemotherapy. Because of this reality, you should become more informed by reading Chapter 5 in Patient’s Guide to AHCC.
In this chapter of our detailed guide, you’ll learn how AHCC can have a positive impact on anyone who is taking chemotherapy as part of their cancer treatment plan. This chapter discusses the common side effects of chemotherapy. Data from numerous scientific studies demonstrates how AHCC could make a difference in quality of life for anyone undergoing chemotherapy. Now we know you’re busy and likely don’t have time to read the entire the Patient’s Guide to AHCC, so we’re highlighting the key points from Chapter 5 in this blog post for you!
To understand the impact of chemotherapy on the body, consider the following:
- People are treated with drugs designed to kill cancer cells, but unfortunately these drugs also destroy healthy cells sometimes causing serious side effects.
- Of the common side effects associated with chemotherapy, one has the potential to be very serious: neutropenia or a low white blood cell count.
- White blood cells fight infections and if a patient’s levels drop too low, they may need to stop their chemotherapy for a while. This places the patient at an increased risk for infections and also interrupts their cancer treatment.
- Along with this major side effect, there are a number of other serious side effects to be aware of. They are discussed in detail in Chapter 5 of The Patient’s Guide to AHCC.
Hair Loss and Chemotherapy
While not life threatening, this can be a life-altering and emotionally devastating side effect of chemotherapy. Chemotherapy can cause eyebrow, armpit, pubic, eyelash and other body hair to fall out. The good news is that AHCC may help reduce this hair loss.
A 2009 study showed that hair loss was less severe in rats taking AHCC. Read page 49 in The Patient’s Guide to AHCC for full details of this study and to better understand the connection between hair loss and chemotherapy.
Nausea, Vomiting and Chemotherapy
Both nausea and vomiting are among the most feared side effects of chemotherapy:
- Nausea and vomiting can be so severe for some patients that they decide to stop undergoing chemotherapy.
- Recent clinical studies and case reports show that AHCC can improve patient quality of life regarding nausea and vomiting. One study in particular noted that patients taking AHCC found an improvement in the nausea, vomiting, and pain during their cancer treatment than they experienced prior to supplementation.
Impaired Liver, Spleen Function and Chemotherapy
Not many people are aware of the impacts chemotherapy can have on the liver and on spleen function. To learn more about how these two vital organs can be impaired by chemotherapy read pages 50 and 51 in Chapter 5 of The Patient’s Guide to AHCC.
You’ll find details of recent studies that reveal that AHCC is useful in reducing the liver and spleen related side effects associated with chemotherapy.
Myelosuppression and Chemotherapy
Chemotherapy can destroy white blood cells and damage bone marrow function – this is known as myelosuppression:
- Bone marrow is vital in the creation of white blood cells, red blood cells and platelets – when bone marrow is damaged by chemotherapy the production and levels of these critical immune system substances declines. This makes patients highly susceptible to infections and they can also develop anemia, which exacerbates their lowered resistance.
- Multiple studies show that AHCC can have a positive effect on myelosuppression and improve white blood cell levels in response to chemotherapy.
- The ability of AHCC to mitigate myelosuppresion and to enhance immune cell activity and function are critically important benefits for individuals who experience a decline in white blood cell levels as a result of chemotherapy, as well as a potential way to reduce the risks associated with this life-threatening complication.
Loss of Appetite and Chemotherapy
A loss of appetite along with nausea and vomiting can result in poor nutritional intake. Because cancer patients already have a compromised immune system, a poor or inadequate diet can result in weight loss, a breakdown in muscle, increased susceptibility to infection and an overall poorer quality of life.
Many patients who take AHCC during their chemotherapy treatments do report an increase in appetite – allowing them to maintain or regain lost weight and to overall strengthen their immune system.
Is AHCC Safe to Use With Chemotherapy?
The answer, with one caveat, is Yes. AHCC is reported to enhance and strengthen the therapeutic effects of the anticancer agent cisplatin, paclitaxel, doxorubicin, and perhaps others as well. The caveat does apply to a study that found there may be a drug-drug interaction when used with specific chemotherapy agents. This includes drugs such as tamoxifen. Specially, use of AHCC with such drugs can reduce their effectiveness. Please read page 53 in Many patients who take AHCC during their chemotherapy treatments do report an increase in appetite – allowing them to maintain or regain lost weight and to overall strengthen their immune system. The Patient’s Guide to AHCC to learn more about this drug-drug interaction so you can be equipped to discuss this with your doctor.
Through numerous studies, AHCC has demonstrated its ability to improve the quality of life of patients who suffer from the side effects of chemotherapy. Making the functional food AHCC a part of a patient treatment plan can provide a safe, natural way to improve the quality of life of anyone who is battling cancer. Please download and read The Patient’s Guide to AHCC in order to fully understand how this functional food can make a difference for anyone you know who is undergoing chemotherapy.