Are you having back pain with any of the following?

  • Severe pain, weakness or tingling in your leg(s).
  • Difficulty stopping urination or loss of control of bladder or bowels.
  • Unexplained fever, nausea or vomiting.
  • A history of cancer or unexplained weight loss.

We understand that you are experiencing one or more of the health issues that might be impacting your back pain.

We recommend that you discuss these health issues with your doctor before proceeding with this program.

Once you are cleared by your doctor to do this program, we hope it helps you find relief from your back pain.

Cancer Care

Santa Clara Medical Center

News & Events

Dr. Pan and Dr. Lee's Blog

Neutropenia—Reduce Your Risk of Infection

Jun 01, 2012

By Anzonette Pittet, RD, CSO

Cancer treatment can affect bone marrow’s ability to produce enough neutrophils—white blood cells that help you fight infection—weakening the immune system and making you more vulnerable to infection. This condition is called neutropenia.

The best way to protect yourself against infection is to reduce exposure to bacteria, harmful organisms, and foodborne illnesses by following some basic guidelines:

1. Wash your hands well and often.

  • Wash with soap and water before handling food, after using the bathroom, and after being out in public places.
  • Use hand sanitizer if you do not have access to soap and water.

2. Take special care when handling food.

  • Wash your hands before and after you prepare food.
  • Use a separate cutting board for meat than you use for fruits and vegetables. This helps prevent cross contamination.
  • Clean counter tops regularly with a bleach solution to kill harmful bacteria.
  • Scrub all raw fruits and vegetables before you eat or cut into them. Fruits and vegetables that have a rough surface, such as melons, can trap bacteria like salmonella. Avoid foods that cannot be washed well such as raspberries, lettuce, or spinach.
  • Thaw meat and fish in the refrigerator or defrost it in the microwave. Do not leave it sitting out to defrost as bacteria grows quickly at room temperature.
  • Cook meat and eggs thoroughly. Meats should not have any pink inside. Eggs should be hard, not runny.
  • Avoid raw fish and shellfish, such as sushi and raw oysters.
  • Keep hot foods hot and cold foods cold. Put leftovers in the refrigerator as soon as you are done eating (ideally within one hour of when they were served).
  • Make sure all juice, milk products, and honey are pasteurized.
  • Do not use foods or drinks that are past their freshness date.
  • Do not buy foods from bulk bins.
  • Avoid buffets, salad bars, and self-service restaurants.
  • Do not eat foods that show signs of mold, including moldy cheeses such as bleu cheese, Gorgonzola, and Roquefort.

There is no special diet that can prevent neutropenia during cancer treatment. Maintaining a balanced diet that includes a variety of fruit, vegetables, proteins, and grains will give your body the building blocks it needs to make new cells as soon as your bone marrow recovers.

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