The standard-of-care for healthy newly diagnosed multiple myeloma (MM) patients is to have induction chemotherapy followed by an autologous stem cell transplant (ASCT). As the forum post from The Myeloma Beacon indicates, it is not uncommon for newly diagnosed multiple myeloma patient to have difficulty harvesting enough stem cells needed for their ASCT.
The advice given by conventional oncology is to have more toxic chemotherapy and maybe this will help the patient produce more stem cells.
I was diagnosed with multiple myeloma in early 1994. I underwent my induction therapy in the Spring of 1995 and Dr. Berger, my oncologist, gave me two rounds of cytoxan chemotherapy to stimulate my body’s production of stem cells.
Hindsight is 20/20 of course but cytoxan (cyclophosphamide) is very toxic. I developed several short, long-term and late stage side effects from my two cycles of cytoxan. My mantra “If I knew then what I know now…” applies to my cytoxan chemotherapy as well as much of my conventional therapy in 1994, ’95 and ’96.
Rather than the two cycles of cytoxan I wish I had undergone HyperBaric Oxygen Therapy while taking B-complex supplements.
Two articles linked and excerpted below cite healthy therapies for increasing the body’s ability to produce stem cells.
What have I learned about MM over the past 20+ years? Myeloma is about two things 1) symptoms (bone damage, anemia, kidney function, etc.) and 2) side effects from toxic chemotherapy.
Whether you are debating treatment options, currently undergoing treatment and experiencing painful side effects, or trying to figure out how to stay in remission, I want to share what I’ve learned from 22 years of full remission from Multiple Myeloma.
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“No stem cells after two days of apheresis. After time (six weeks), tried again with single dose of etoposide followed by GCSF for 13 days. Insufficient peripheral stem cells to even try apheresis or Mozobil…”
“We conclude that HBO(2) mobilizes stem/progenitor cells by stimulating *NO synthesis.”
“Folates can stimulate stem cell proliferation independently of their role as vitamins, according to a new study that used an in vitro culture and animal model system in their findings. Folates, whether supplemental B vitamins or natural folates found in food, are essential for the proper functioning of all cells in the body and are critical to prevent birth defects…”