Capecitabine and swimming

Hi does anyone whose been on Capecitabine for a while swim regularly? This probably sounds a minor matter compared with lung liver and bone mets (all of which I have) but I really like to swim a couple of times a week in a local outdoor pool. I am just about to start Capecitabine, after palbocyclib and letrozole stopped working, and swimming is really important for my mental and physical health. I am really worried about the hand and foot syndrome side effect as I already have some excma and have had cellulitis twice this year. I guess that swimming in a chlorinated pool may make the hand and foot syndrome worse. Has anyone continued swimming whilst on Capecitabine?

I’d be grateful for any advice as other peoples experiences so valuable 

Hi Kay

I can’t answer your question as, although I’m just finishing cycle 10 on cape, I haven’t yet restarted swimming. All I can say is that my oncologist is encouraging me to swim as I really need exercise and I’m planning to renew my gym membership within the next few weeks.

I guess the important thing is to take preventative measures and make sure you use the right cream, moisturise your feet regularly and moisturise immediately after swimming. You need a cream that’s high in urea. My oncologist prescribes me Hydromol but I’ve read of others using Udderly, which you can buy without prescription. Dr Raj said on morning tv that he pees when he has a shower as a way of protecting his feet. I’n not sure I’d go to that extent! I’ve also been advised to wear socks to prevent friction with shoes. Glad it’s winter coming!

As I said, I’ve done 10 cycles. I have had very slight peeling on the side of one heel and of course areas on the soles of my feet and my palms are fluorescent pink but it varies. I’m a ‘delicate little flower’ and would have expected far worse so maybe the Hydromol is working. There are some pretty gross pictures around but you really wouldn’t know I have PPE (grade 1).

Good luck with the cape. I had remarkable results by cycle 4 and am hoping to maintain this for a couple of years. Fatigue is my worst side effect but my advice would be to make sure you have Buscopan to hand and Imodium if the hospital doesn’t give you Loperamide (I have boxes of the stuff). I also have cyclizine prescribed by the oncologist but nausea hasn’t been a problem. Ask your oncologist about protecting your stomach (I was already taking Lansoprazole) as it can be pretty harsh in terms of heartburn/acid reflux.

I think that’s about it. Don’t worry if you feel pretty awful (a lot of women don’t) in the first cycles. You can have the dosage reduced - they always start you on the highest dose. Your body will soon adapt to it. Now, apart from binges of fatigue and the tablet-taking, I feel quite normal. Good luck

Jan x

Hi my oncologist said no swimming in indoor swimming pools as the risk of infection is high. 
I go outdoor swimming in the sea in a wetsuit and it truly is amazing. 
(I’m on Letrozole and palbociclib )

good luck