Post-chemo swelling

Good afternoon. I went through a course of chemotherapy 6 cycles felt normal but the last course I got swelling, legs swollen hands swollen face and the whole body is full of water, my weight is small so I see weight gain every day, it is not food as I do not eat much. I have tried to contact the treatment team but they don’t see the problem. My legs and arms have started to hurt a lot and I don’t know what other steps I should take and what investigations I should do to find out what is wrong with me. My breast care nurse has changed and now I can’t see where I should go for help. It’s so awful when no one wants you and you don’t know what to do. I have radiotherapy next and I don’t know if my body is ready for the new treatment. If you have any advice on what to do in this case.

Hi Nata

Thanks for posting. This sounds like a really difficult time, especially if you feel that your treatment team aren’t listening to your concerns.

Some types of chemotherapy can cause swelling in the body, also called oedema. This usually improves over time. You say you have contacted your treatment team but it’s not clear if you have had a face-to-face consultation for an assessment of your symptoms. It would be a good idea to try and arrange this for reassurance, or in case any treatment to help manage the swelling can be recommended. As you are due to start radiotherapy your team can also advise whether this can go ahead.

If your original breast care nurse has changed it should still be possible to contact another breast care nurse and explain your symptoms and concerns.

You may be interested in our range of free supportive services for anyone who has had a diagnosis of breast cancer. They include face to face and online courses and events.

For more details about all of these services, please see the information on the link.

Do call our helpline if you would like to talk this through or have any further questions. The helpline team have time to listen, talk things through and signpost you to more support and information if necessary. Your call will be confidential, and the number is free from UK landlines and all mobile networks. The number is 0808 800 6000, (Relay UK - prefix 18001).

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Best wishes


Breast Care Nurse

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