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Stress and low blood count?


Re: Stress and low blood count?

Hi Paris

I don’t know your details, so I am only giving my view based on my own experience and I DON’T know much being new to all this!

My job helps me so I wouldn’t want to leave and not be busy/active mentally and physically! Perhaps reducing your hours might help if it does not have a negative impact financially? Try and reduce not permanently if possible until you know it’s the right thing. I returned to work after 8 months and reduced my hours - I will continue like this for now!

had a telephone consultation today and asked what can I do to get bloods up... she said nothing...made me laugh!

All the best


Community Champion

Re: Stress and low blood count?

Hi Paris,

Sorry to hear your bloods have been so low that you can't have treatment.  Its always a catch 22 isn't it?  By blood count do you mean your neutrophils specifically, or blood count in general?

I don't know if stress can affect blood count but I think its a reasonable question to consider and certainly, there's lots of evidence on how stress does real damage to everyone's health over time.  I thought I'd reply because work is something that is also important to me and I can empathise with that.  Instead of stopping work could you maybe look at reducing your hours?

I don't know if this will help or not but something that I have noticed makes a difference to blood counts seems to be related to how anemic I am.  I always ask for copies of my blood results and I compare them (with the help of Google to tell me what each item on the blood count list represents). 

I spoke to my Oncologist about it and we discussed that I can take iron and B12 supplements a few times a week, as I don't eat a lot of meat.  Once I started taking the supplements, I noticed a positive improvement in my blood counts at the next test.  Neutrophils still dipped low, I think they take longer to bounce back to normal levels. 

I also noticed that if I have a proper break (say 2 weeks or longer) around every 3 cycles of treatment, I seem to do a lot better with blood results overall.  My Oncologist generally isn't keen on breaks of longer than two weeks at the most but sometimes I just need that time to bounce back when I start to feel run down from treatment.  I also recently read an article that said regular exercise really helps cancer patients boost neutrophils and blood counts (apparently neutrophil production doubles after something like a brisk walk that gets the heart rate going).

Its definitely worth thinking about and also maybe asking your Oncologist / BC Nurse or even GP as they might be able to give you some ideas around this.  Certainly don't look at giving up work just yet until you've explored all the options!


Stress and low blood count?

Hi. I have been taking palbociclib for a year now. I was put on highest dose and now on lowest due to blood count being too low. I have been fine until a couple of months ago and now its been low twice and I'm unable to have treatment. My job is very stressful at the moment and I'm wondering if that could affect my bloods and if anyone else has or is experiencing the same? I'm considering giving up my job but feel reluctant to do so as I'm trying to keep life as normal as possible...probably don't want to face the fact I have a serious illness and life has to change!