Chemotherapy Effects on Bone Marrow and Testes

by Richard Mitchell, MD

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    00:01 Chemotherapy will definitely cause bone marrow failure.

    00:04 Again, a lot of what we are doing is generating or producing molecules in chemotherapy that will break DNA, or that will inhibit normal cell turnover by impacting our ability to repair DNA.

    00:23 And if we do that to a tumor, it may become so weird and so defective in terms of its genome that it dies, and that's the goal.

    00:32 But then every other rapidly turning over cell in the body - bone marrow, hair follicles, GI tract, those are also going to be susceptible to the same things.

    00:42 And here we're just looking at a marrow that has been completely ablated.

    00:46 There should be a lot of cellularity in there, and all we have is some residual macrophages.

    00:53 We have a few blood cells and mostly fat.

    00:57 There are no hematopoietic elements.

    00:59 So this patient is going to be impressively at risk for anemia, thrombocytopenia, no platelets, so bleeding, but most profoundly neutropenia and susceptible to infections.

    01:14 Chemotherapy also affects other tissues.

    01:17 Another area where there's rapid cell turnover is in the production of sperm.

    01:23 So we are looking at seminiferous tubules, where there should be a robust generation and differentiation of the early spermatogonia into sperm.

    01:36 And basically there's nothing left.

    01:38 The circle is around, maybe two lonely little sperms and the rest of the normal architecture within that seminiferous tubule has been ablated because of the chemotherapy, so patients will be sterile.

    About the Lecture

    The lecture Chemotherapy Effects on Bone Marrow and Testes by Richard Mitchell, MD is from the course Cancer Morbidity and Mortality.

    Included Quiz Questions

    1. Oligospermia
    2. Thrombocytosis
    3. Polycythemia
    4. Lymphocytosis
    5. Neutrophilia

    Author of lecture Chemotherapy Effects on Bone Marrow and Testes

     Richard Mitchell, MD

    Richard Mitchell, MD

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