Background: Breast cancer (BC) represents the highest incidence of malignancy in women throughout the world. Medicinal fungi can stimulate the body, reduce side-effects associated with chemotherapy and improve the quality of life in patients with cancer.
Aim: To evaluate the effects of dietary supplementation of Agaricus sylvaticus on clinical and nutritional parameters in BC patients undergoing chemotherapy.
Materials and methods: A randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind, clinical trial was carried out at the Oncology Clinic, Hospital of the Federal District-Brazil from September 2007 to July 2009. Forty six patients with BC, Stage II and III, were randomly assigned to receive either nutritional supplement with A. sylvaticus (2.1 g/day) or placebo. Patients were evaluated during treatment period.
Results: Patient supplemented with A. sylvaticus improved in clinical parameters and gastrointestinal functions. Poor appetite decreased by 20% with no changes in bowel functions (92.8%), nausea and vomiting (80%).
Conclusion: Dietary supplementation with A. sylvaticus improved nutritional status and reduced abnormal bowel functions, nausea, vomiting, and anorexia in patients with BC receiving chemotherapy.
Keywords: Agaricus sylvaticus; chemotherapy side effects; nutritional status.