What Is Nadir?

Chemotherapy treatment will usually involve a number of doses (sometimes called cycles). The period of time beginning 7–12 days after you finish each dose—and possibly lasting up to one week—is when you have the fewest in your body. Because of this, it will be extra hard for your body to fight off germs during this time.

This period of time is sometimes referred to as which means “lowest point”. For example, if you haveon August 7, you are at highest risk of picking up anbetween August 14 and August 19. This period varies slightly depending upon thedrug, or combination of drugs, used.


What Can You Do During Your

  • Find out from your doctor and/or nurse exactly when your whitewill be at its lowest.
  • Be extra careful during this time.
  • Try to remember to take your temperature every evening, and call your doctor if you have a temperature of 100.4ºF or higher for more than 1 hour, or a one-time temperature of 101ºF or higher.

To find out your risk for developing a low white (neutropenia), take our short RISK ASSESSMENT.

This graphic shows an example of when a cancer patient is at the highest risk for infection following their chemotherapy. This period of time varies. Please speak with your healthcare provider about your specific risk.

Education Materials

CDC created a variety of resources for patients and healthcare providers, including a quick reference sheet, fact sheets, posters, and videos.

"I never thought seriously about the risk of infection until I was hospitalized and unable to fight a fever. It’s so important to understand what steps you can take to help protect yourself."Donna Deegan, News AnchorBreast Cancer Survivor 

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