Our 24/7 cancer helpline provides information and answers for people dealing with cancer. We can connect you with trained cancer information specialists who will answer questions about a cancer diagnosis and provide guidance and a compassionate ear.
Our highly trained specialists are available 24/7 via phone and on weekdays can assist through video calls and online chat. We connect patients, caregivers, and family members with essential services and resources at every step of their cancer journey. Ask us how you can get involved and support the fight against cancer. Some of the topics we can assist with include:
For medical questions, we encourage you to review our information with your doctor.
Shortages of blood cells (red blood cells, white blood cells, or platelets) cause most of the symptoms in people with myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS). Hematopoietic growth factors can often help bring the blood counts closer to normal.
Hematopoietic growth factors are hormone-like substances that help bone marrow make new blood cells. These substances occur naturally in the body, but scientists have found ways to make large amounts of them in the lab. Patients can get these factors in larger doses than would be made by their own body.
Other medicines that raise blood cell counts in different ways might also be helpful for some people.
Patients usually receive growth factors and similar drugs through subcutaneous (under the skin) injections. Your health care team can give the injections, or you or your family members might be able to learn to give them at home.
Studies are under way to find the best way to predict which patients will be helped by growth factors and similar drugs, as well as the best way to combine growth factors with each other and with other treatments, such as chemotherapy.
Our team is made up of doctors and oncology certified nurses with deep knowledge of cancer care as well as journalists, editors, and translators with extensive experience in medical writing.
Estey EH, Schrier SL. Management of complications of the myelodysplastic syndromes. UpToDate. 2017. Accessed at https://www.uptodate.com/contents/ management-of-the-complications-of-the-myelodysplastic-syndromes on October 12, 2017.
National Comprehensive Cancer Network. NCCN Clinical Practice Guidelines in Oncology: Myelodysplastic Syndromes. V.1.2018. Accessed at www.nccn.org/professionals/physician_gls/pdf/mds.pdf on October 12, 2017.
Last Revised: April 15, 2020
Donate now so we can continue to provide access to critical cancer information, resources, and support to improve lives of people with cancer and their families.