Ill after first chemo terrifried of second

I am having chemo first to shrink the tumour in my breat followed by surgery. I had the first chemo of Taxol nearly three weeks ago. I was terrifeied during treatment and they had to syop for three hours because I did not feel well. After I started getting very bad headaches and had all the usual things, sleeplessness, weakness and dizziness.Just as I thought I was picking up I became shivery and when the hosp checked my blood I was neutropenic . I had to stay isolated for three days with iv antibiotics. I was then allowed home with a course of antibiotics. My hair has almost all fallen out. I now have to see the oncologist tomorrow and there is a possibility he will reduce the dose. I am now absolutly terrified of the next treatment and keepthinking that I amnot going to survive the chemo. Has any one got any advice? Alison

Hi there,
Your post isn’t visible yet but, from the title, I hear what you are saying, I went into chemo thinking it would be really doable on the friday… by sunday i was feeling quite poorly. Just my luck to get a chest infection at the same time. I’m still not right but after a delay of a week my oncologist declared me able to have chemo (just), day three today and VERY different. OK so i feel like I’ve been hit by a bus, everythng tastes awful - and smells … oh, and it takes a campaign plan to get to the bathroom but, in comparison to last time, this is definitely doable.
My daughters are pleased as they won’t have to lose days off work - nor the expense of taxis to get to me.
I am sure you’ll be fine next time, just make sure your oncologist and chemo nurses know just how you felt.

After my first FEC chemo I couldn’t stop vomiting for the first 24 hours and was weak etc so I too was dreading my second. However, I went 11 days ago for my second chemo, told my onc and she prescribed 3 different anti sickness pills that I took as soon as I left the hospital. It was totally different this time. I am still getting tired which I can cope with. I also had the trauma of having a Hickman line fitted as my veins went into hibernation and they couldn’t do a blood test. So I had the line fitted under local and then had the chemo. When you go next time let them know how you were so that they can help you.

Take care


Hi Alison,

I’m sorry to hear you have been suffering badly. My Mum has just had her second chemo, but after the first she was absolutely awful. She was staying in hospital anyway, but she was awake all night with terrible nausea, shaking and many other bad side effects. It was so bad that she too wondered if she could carry on and thought about just asking how long she would have if she didn’t have the chemo. Obviously I set her straight on this and told her to imagine me saying that to her!!

Anyway we had an appointment with her consultant and they amended the drugs she was being given and even though she did feel rough after the second, she was so much better than the first one. We too wondered how we would get through all 6, but I think it is doable. We make sure we do something really nice just before the next chemo session so Mum can think about that when she is feeling bad.

I won’t know exactly how you are feeling as it’s not me going through it, but i really do wish you the best of luck with it all. I know it might seem like it’s impossible, but the time is going quicker than I thought it would. Make sure you plan lots of nice things for your good weeks and keep chocolate within reach at all times!!

Michelle .

Hi Greenbean,

2 years ago I also opted to have the chemo first in order to shrink the tumour.

I just want to send you some support.

My advice is to definately let the nurses and onc know how you felt the first time that you had chemo; I am sure that they may adjust the chemo drugs themselves and/or the sickness drugs. My onc reduced the dosage after I also went neutropoenic. Yes I got nausea, sickness, my hair fell out, shivery (although I am sure that this was my body’s reaction to the shock of having the first chemo), cried loads, sleepness etc.

I was the biggest wimp out; my family and church friends had to support and encourage me every step of the way; so if I can do it, so can you my girl.

Be positive. Treat yourself to something good when you are feeling a bit low. Plan loads of nice things. And you will get there too.


Hi Alison

I can really empathsise with you. On my first FEC I picked up an infection and was in hopsital for 3 days hooked up to the dreaded anti-biotics. Two weeks later I was back in again with another infection after my second FEC. I had also picked up a really nasty bowel infection from the hospital (great) which came back twice and took me over a month to get over. I had my third chemo delayed for 5 weeks. During my second FEC there was absolutely no way I was going to get through this chemo and I wanted to give up. I have never felt so ill. Somehow, and believe me I don’t know how I have done it, but I have found the strength to continue. Like you, and so many of us, I was absolutely terrified of the chemo and I still am to a certain extent.

2 weeks ago I had my third chemo, this time taxtotere and I have been terrified about ending up in hopsital again. So far so good. There is a way of getting through this chemo. I treat myself to spray tans, facials, meeting up with friends when I have the energy.

As for hair loss, I never thought I would get used to it. It is only in the last 4 weeks that I have been able to look at myself in the mirror and not cry.

Take lots of care