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Chemotherapy: What To Do While In Treatment

If Your Platelet Count Is Low: Steps To Reduce Risk Of Problems During Chemotherapy

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© American Cancer Society 2010

 Things that may help you avoid problems if your platelet count is low:

  • Don't take any medicine without first checking with your doctor or nurse. This includes aspirin and aspirin-free pain relievers, like acetaminophen (Tylenol'), ibuprofen, and any other medicines you can buy without a prescription. Some of these medicines can weaken the platelets and make bleeding problems worse.
  • Don't drink any alcoholic beverages unless your doctor says it is all right.
  • Use an extra soft toothbrush to clean your teeth. Talk with your doctor before using dental floss.
  • If you have a runny nose, blow gently into a soft tissue.
  • Take care not to cut or nick yourself when using scissors, needles, knives, or tools.
  • Be careful not to burn yourself when ironing or cooking. Use a padded glove when you reach into the oven.
  • Avoid contact sports and other activities that might cause an injury.
  • Avoid becoming constipated.
  • Use an electric shaver instead of a razor.
  • When bending over, keep your head above your heart.

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