No need for “neutropenic” diets

In hospitalized patients with neutropenia, dogma has dictated they should avoid raw fruits and vegetables, but this RCT of patients undergoing induction chemotherapy for AML found no difference in rates of major infection (pneumonia, bacteremia, or fungemia) in those assigned cooked or raw foods (abstract). Based on this and other smaller studies, there is no evidence for the need for “neutropenic” diets in hospitalized patients.

Danielle Scheurer

Dr. Scheurer is a clinical hospitalist and the Medical Director of Quality and Safety at the Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston, South Carolina, and is Assistant Professor of Medicine. She is a graduate of the University of Tennessee College of Medicine, completed her residency at Duke University, and completed her Masters in Clinical Research at the Medical University of South Carolina. She also serves as the Web Editor and Physician Advisor for the Society of Hospital Medicine.

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