Hi, I’m starting my first chemo (FEC T) on thursday (13 August); I would llove to know if there are any other newbies out there. Feeling a bit nervous at this end!
HI JakeB I am starting on the same on the 24th. I am too very nervous but I am trying to read all the positive advice. I am stocking up on all the things that are good.
How many treatments have you got to have? Did you have a mastectomy. Hope you are ok? xxxx
I had my first chemo on 30th July, so nearly Aug. Chemo was fine and also used cold cap which wasnt too bad either. I felt fine until the following day when I felt a bit light headed, tired and breathless. Also felt like I had a hangover for a few days. By day 5/6 the fog began to lift and I was much calmer. I have had a few mild side effects but nothing I couldnt handle. A sore mouth and throat was easily sorted by some gel that the Oncology Nurse gave me and I am also using corsodyl mouth wash everytime I clean my teeth. I had a few aches and pains so took some paracetamol and ibuprofen together which helped. Slight dry skin rash on back of my hands but unperfumed moisteriser kept that at bay and now it has gone. For constipation I had some prunes and prune juice. I had 1 day of diarrhoea but used tesco own brand anti-diarrhoea tabs which worked immediately. Most importantly drink LOADS OF WATER, they recommend 2 litres a day. It helps to wash the chemo through your system and makes you feel better to be properly hydrated. Dont beat yourself up if you just feel like staying in bed for first few days, do what your body tells you to do. You will gradually feel brighter I promise and dont be afraid to call the Oncology Nurse about anything that worries you, it doesnt have to be urgent.
Hope all goes well for you, if I can answer any other questions pls feel free to message me.
Just thought I’d pop into your thread to wish you all luck.
I formed the ‘treatment starting August 2014’ thread so am a year on from where you are now.
I am Cancer free but still have ongoing treatment. Had chemotherapy & radiotherapy. Now having herceptin every 3 weeks & am on tamoxifen for 5 years. Yes…they threw the whole lot at me but I figured the more treatment you have hopefully the better chance of keeping the bloomin disease away!
I also cold capped & although my hair did shed, I managed to retain most of it (in a short style).
Just to give you something to aim for…a few of us from our August 2014 thread met up just this Saturday gone…we had champagne afternoon tea at The Ritz which we had promised ourselves when we felt rubbish. It felt great to be a year on & actually doing it!!!
You’ll go through so much together on here…I know I’ve made some very special friends for life on this forum.
So I wish you all well & will pop in to read how you’re getting along.
Stay strong ladies… You can do this!!!
Hi bevster thank you so much for sharing this it really helps to have a goal to look forward to. I’m having the same treatment as you. Feel like such a long road ahead! Hope you had a lovely time with the ladies big hugs xxxxxxxxxx
Hi carolec. How are you feeling today? Thank you for sharing I’m writing down all these tips I’m getting a box together with all the things I might need. What oils are you putting on your nails? I hope we can all help each other through this. I’ve just found out the date they have given me is the bank holiday Monday do you think they will delay or do they do chemo on bank holidays? Xxxxxx
Hi sue thank you for all your tips everyone is so helpful on here. I’ve now bought the box and it’s gradually filling up with all the advice I’ve been given I’m hoping I will have everything for whatever occurs. I’m thinking if getting my hair cut as it is very long. I’m a very undecided on the cold cap so many different stories on here for that which part of the treatment does your hair fall out and when should I cut my hair and go for a wig fitting? Should I just go for it before treatment starts or go in between. Thanks ladies for all the tips. Xxxxxxxxxx
Hi nick so glad to hear your so positive. I’m the same as you but going through nearly the whole of August dreading it. I’m having FECT but been to afraid to read through the details of it yet and just taking tips from the lovely brave ladies like yourself on here. Glad you got through your first one ok it gives us all some hope. Big hugs to you and hope you can enjoy your time feeling good me and my family are trying to make sure that on good weeks we are going to try and do something nice so we have something to look forward to as I’ve been told that helps. Hope we can a help each other through this xxxxxxxxx
Hi. This is my first post. I’m starting neoadjuvant chemotherapy (AC-T) on 19th August, the day after my younger son’s birthday and the day before my older son gets his GCSE results. I have invasive lobular cancer in my right breast and it’s also in the axillary lymph nodes. The plan is to follow chemo (eight two-week cycles) with a mastectomy (right breast) and full lymph node clearance, then radiotherapy and hormone treatment. So it looks like we’re in for the long haul. Don’t have much to say other than I’m as apprehensive as everyone else seems to be and am keenly seeking tips that might alleviate any problems/complications that might arise. Good luck my fellow August travellers. We can try to be brave together!
Hi bravescholar. So sorry you are going through this with so much going on. I know exactly how you feel. I’ve had a few big events this year and I was so looking forward to them and each one ended up being the week before I was getting a different set of results and couldn’t enjoy those moments. I kept a brave face on for my family. Could they delay it for a couple of days as a couple of ladies had their treatment delayed due to other commitments might be worth asking. Your treatment sounds very similar to mine but round a different way but your right about it being a long haul. So grateful for this forum it helps so much instead of waiting to talk to a nurse or doctor to get back to you or until your next appointment. Big hugs ladies. JakeB hope you are ok for when you start chemo on Thursday will be thinking of you xxxxxxxxxxx
I am so glad I found this thread as I feel slightly less alone and scared. I am 33 and was diagnosed with invasive DCIS on 26 th June. I have had a mastectomy and reconstruction already and am due to start chemotherapy and Herceptin in a couple of weeks. To be honest…I’m terrified! It’s all happened so quick and I just can’t believe that I’m having to face this but what choice have we got ladies? We can’t just sit here and roll over. I’ve got an amazing husband and a beautiful 20 month old boy who I need to fight for and be brave. Thanks for your tips on coping with the chemo. I’m trying the cold cap. I have shoulder length thick blonde hair and was thinking about a cut before hand to maybe make the cap more effective. I read on Macmillan that Toni and Guy have specially trained stylists in their salons who assist people going through chemo.
How did you ladies go about getting your wig sorted? Did you just find a local provider or did you go through the hospital? I really desperately don’t want to loose my hair and so am trying to plan every possible alternative.
Whilst this is a horrible unfair awful situation that we are all in I am looking forward to having some lovely ladies to share this experience with and hopefully we can make light of some of the rubbish and help each other through the tougher bits.
Much love and support to you all xxx
Hi bravescholar - I think we all go through a guilt trip on this worrying about everyone else but I’ve found that children cope far better than we think they can. I was diagnosed just as my daughters were taking their GCSEs and A levels and op 5 days after my youngest daughter’s 16th. We had booked for my nieces wedding in Italy and thought I wouldn’t be able to go but I did and it was the best holiday, My 2nd taxol is on the day of my youngest’s GCSE results and my 3rd on the day of my oldest daughter’s A level results, (having weekly chemo) but they are good distractions. The icing on my cake is that my sons partner is expecting my first grandchild in September - my son is a quite a bit older than my girls and they have been trying for so long. I know it will be your first chemo and you will be worried - I was, but I hope the distraction of your son’s birthday will allow you to enjoy the day before chemo. We will all be thinking of you and sending virtual big hugs xxx
hi Blondeambition - I’m also on Herceptin and had first one last Thursday and have felt fine with it so far but early days. I bought my wig from a shop in west London and I think they give a list on this site. Tony and Guy also advertise a service but when I rang a couple of the designated shops they were a bit vague and didn’t know about the service - think it’ s a new thing maybe xxx
I thought some of you in this thread may find the BCC ‘Breast cancer and hairloss’ support and information helpful so here’s the link::
For further support from BCC during this difficult time including our ‘Someone like me’ service please follow this link:
Popping in again from my August 14 thread & have just been reading through your posts. Undoubtedly lots of concerns & questions…just exactly the same as myself & the lovely ladies I journeyed with a year ago.
Re cold capping - I had long hair & took the difficult decision to choose a short cut in preparation for the cold cap. It wasn’t the nicest of feelings. I found the first 30-40 minutes & the last 20 minutes the hardest. It does mean that you’re in for an age longer than your chemo but I really thought it was worth it. My hair did shed after my 2nd chemo but it only thinned in patches (luckily I had plenty of thick hair which covered the patches in the main).
Here’s a tip…take some boiled sweets to suck whilst ’ brain freeze’ kicks in. Keep occupied…if you have a chemo buddy with you take things to look at/do together. There’ll be some times when you yourself don’t want to speak but tell them to keep talking you through it.
Keep some flavoured ice cubes in the freezer at home. My mum bought me frozen pineapple & mango cubes…they were just nice to have to freshen my mouth if I felt a bit yuk after chemo. Ice lollies another handy thing to have in stock too.
Make sure you take your anti-sickness drugs even if you don’t feel sick! & drink plenty of water.
Hope this helps you along for now & good luck to those of you starting treatment over the next few days!!.
I’ll pop in again soon to see how you’re getting on.
Thanks for the tips and empathy ladies. It makes me feel a little less scared. I’ve started gathering all the things I might need together in a box which is a good distraction.
I’m going for a haircut on Monday at Tony and Guy. They were very nice on the phone. It’s taken me ages to grow my long hair but I want to let me little boy get used to mummy with shorter hair gradually so I’m going to go for a bob I think.
Hope you can all try and enjoy your weekends and don’t think about cancer for at least a few hours ? xxx
Hi ladies thank you bevstar I think we need all the tips we can get. Really grateful for all tips! Xxxxxxxx I’m doing the same as you blonde ambition I have bought a box and filling it with every eventuality. I also grew my hair long and I’m going to get it cut next week. And try and get a wig fitting I’m still so undecided about cold cap. I’ve also got a list as long as my arm to ask oncologist. Also jakeb I know you haven’t been on here since you started this thread but you said that your first chemo was today just wanted to say I’ve been thinking of you and I hope it went ok big hugs xxxxxxx
Hope it went ok.
Happy birthday for next Friday Nico - I had my birthday in June but my OH is also planning some treats along the way as it’s good to have something to look forward to. I’m feeling good today after 2nd one - cold cap wasn’t good this time for last hour and chemo nurse told me 99% of her patients take a light sedative which she has given me to take next week so will try that.
Bravescholar - I have a couple of friends who didn’t use the cold cap and didn’t lose their hair so hopefully you will ok xxx
Hi ladies how are you all today? What treatment are you having I’m going to be having FECT are you on the same? I’ve tried not to read to much information as sometimes I panic but then I think so many ladies including yourselves have all come through it. Hope you are all ok today. Have a lovely birthday nick and hope your ok carolec xxxxxx
I will have a look at the lush products they have some lovely things xxxxxx