April 2018 Chemo Starters

Hi Ladies

This thread is for anyone starting chemo in April and would like help and support along the way.

I went through chemo in 2016, so please ask if you have any questions.

Best wishes

Sue xx

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Hi sue I’m starting chemo in April.Not sure which 1 yet find out Wednesday. I had fec 11yrs ago so bit anxious this time



I am due to start chemo (FEC/T) on 20th April and am really nervous as to what lies ahead. It has been more difficult as my daughter is getting married in May so arranging dates has been stressful. Will have a wig on standby in case too much hair falls out. Will try cold cap to minimise this. Out of interest how long after surgery are others starting chemo?


Hope all goes well for fellow newbies to Chemo.


Linda x

Hi Linda
And welcome to the thread.
My Chemo started 6 weeks after surgery, which I think is about average. It is suppose to start within 12 weeks.
Hair loss starts about 3 weeks in. I think the cold cap minimises this, but there is still some loss.
The difficult days of Chemo are the first week, when you really need to take it easy. The second week, be mindful of infections. So, in regards to the wedding, where does this fall for you? Ideally, the third week is best. So it may be worth considering the start date of your Chemo to accommodate this. Just a thought…
Anyway, please come and chat whenever you like and hopefully you can all support each other.
Sue xx

Hi all, I start chemo on 13th April (Friday 13th!! - good job I’m not superstitious!) Six cyckesnof FEC-T.

Had a single mastectomy on 12th Feb so it will be about eight weeks after surgery (everything was delayed because of the snow disrupting appointments).

Still on medication from nerve pain but otherwise doing well.

Hello - tomorrow is my second taxol treatment… from the first i had a little of all side effects but I m not sure where there true or just my mind plays tricks… for sure i have left ear titinus … and some loss of hearing - like i m underwater. Is it possible?

Hi NoteRed
I’ve not heard of that one, but it certainly is possible. Chemo seems to attack us in many ways!
As you’re going in tomorrow, I suggest you ask your Chemo team.
Hope it goes OK for you.
Sue xx

Hi Sue I am having my first chemo on Friday 6 th April. Absolutely dreading it and the effects

Thank you SueC :slight_smile: Today I had my second taxol treatment. And then gone to work so far all is fine
I asked my onc for my ear and he said that every little problem we had before chemo gets somehow "enlarged " with treatment- he suggested a little more cortisone. I also said him that I have little pain at my lower back and he said probably from the shot for the increase of the blood cells

Hi all,
I haven’t ever joined a forum before so I’m a real newbie with this… With all of this really! I had a mastectomy and diep on 28th Feb and now scheduled to start chemo around 13 April. To be honest, I’m way more scared of this than I was about the surgery. My treatment will be EC and Paclitaxel. I’d welcome any advice or suggestions on how you’re all preparing in general… for diet, hair loss, day to day! I hope you’ve all managed to enjoy a long weekend…
Fiona x

Morning Ladies
Just a few tips I like to share before starting Chemo…the things I wish someone had told me!!
Firstly, it’s not nearly as bad as you think. Just prepare yourself for the first week when you probably don’t feel up to much. Stock up the fridge, prepare meals in advance if possible, get all the washing done etc. I’m not saying that you will feel ill, it’s just that you may feel fatigue, and then you give yourself time to rest.
You will be given medication from your team for sickness. If you find they are not effective, tell them, as there are other things they can try.
At home, make sure you have some ibroprofen, constipation /diarrhea tablets and a thermometer.
Re. Hair loss… Have a think about how you are going to deal with it. Unfortunately, you will lose some and it may be upsetting. Some try the cold cap and some use a wig. I resigned myself to losing my hair… I had it cut short first and then when it started to shed, I used scarves. I did find it upsetting at first, but then got used to it. My hair did however grow back very quickly and had a full head of hair 4 months after treatment.
I hope this is useful and please ask if you have any specific questions and I will do my best!
Sue xx

I start chemo on 10th April, so now I’m at the what next stage?


How long does the chemo take to adminster?

If I have the cold cap, do you get cold? ia it worth having scarf and gloves with me?

How long after the chemo do you start to feel Ill, ?

What are the esensials to bring to chemo sessions.


 Thank you  Sally 

Hi everyone I’ve just found out starting chemo on Saturday 7th April. Thought I’d join you



I was diagnosed one month ago and I’m starting EC Chemo on April 19th. It’s so good to see this forum and the support provided. Feeling much better after reading some posts. :slight_smile:

I’m going for the cold cap and wonder if there are any tips to take care of the hair between the cycles. I have read about washing hair only with room temperature water and also washing it only 2x week. Anything else?


Also read about the possible loss of sensitivity on the tips of fingers and toes so ice on those areas during chimo also advised. Does that make sense?


Thanks in advance! 

Love, Kath

Thank you Sue - its so nice to talk to someone who understands- today I was at work and I felt that everybody said "everything is gonna be fine " but no one looked me in the eyes…

Afternoon Ladies
Apologies if my replies on not in order today and there is some repetition… I was having problems posting and tried several times!!
I’m glad my advice got posted eventually!
Hugs xx

Hi Kath
And welcome also to the thread.
I didn’t cold cap, so can’t help you there, but I’m sure someone will be along shortly. If not, there is a thread on the Chemotherapy section that might be worth a read.
Sue xx

Hi NoteRed
Sadly I think people don’t really know what to say.
Please come and chat whenever you want… There will always be someone here who knows how you feel.
Sue xx

Hello ladies, I’m from the December thread & just wanted to answer your cold cap questions Sally & Kath. I had a local recurrence in a short space of time. The first time I had 4 cycles of AC chemo & I was told by my unit the cold cap probably wouldn’t work so I didn’t use it. That chemo finished in January last year so when I had to start docetaxol & carboplatin in December I thought I’d use the cold cap. It does add extra time onto your chemo day. Depending on which chemo you have the cap goes on anything from an hour before & will need to stay on for up to 1.5hrs after the chemo has finished. I did keep most of my hair ? It will still shed, I finished chemo 6 weeks ago & it’s still shedding. The cap is very cold but after 10/20 minutes you do get used to it. It will feel very heavy & made me feel dizzy. My unit provided blankets but taking a scarf helped. Others say hot drinks but I found it hard to eat or drink with the cap on as it’s so tight. They say to say to wash your hair with tepid water & ph balanced shampoo with a jug, not the shower, no heat appliances. Also a silk pillowcase. Because my hair was still quite short & curly/messy from losing it, I gently used straighteners to try & make it look presentable & it was ok, although they say not to! It’s hard not being able to colour your roots & I found that as awful as the cold cap!! After losing my hair, I’m so pleased I used the cold cap this time. They do say the docetaxol is kinder to hair than the EC part.

I think someone said when do you start to feel ill. The sister in my unit says it follows a pattern & having been through it twice, it really does! Everyone is different with side effects but what you have the first time will generally follow on subsequent treatments. Good luck to you all xx