Hi, my name is Lesley. Had a lumpectomy on 8 June and due to start 15 sessions of radiotherapy next Wednesday.  I’m really scared!  Was is not helping is a) I suffer from daily chronic headaches, and b) due to the cancer I have had to come off hrt and and now Back to suffering severe hot flushes and sweats all night long and therefore not getting any sleep.  I have a journey of approx half and a half each way to travel for the sessions.  Few questions - does anyone know if you can wear deodorant? Due to the constant sweating (the recent heatwave not helping) I am concicous of having wiffy armpits.  Plus any advice anyone can offer would be greatly appreciated.

Hello Lesley, first of all well done for getting through the op - that’s the difficult bit over with. It certainly seems very quick to start rads - I had 2 wle in April 15 then had to wait until end June to start rads. Rads are actually a doddle in themselves, only prob is if you have skin reaction and that certainly doesn’t happen to everyone.  I was where you are this time last year, so whiffy armpits it certainly was!  Yes, was told not to use any deodrant on the op side, but did use it on the other - thought it might help a bit.  Really don’t worry if your armpits are whiffy - think the staff are more than  used to it.  I had an hour’s travelling each way and that really is the most tiring bit, and also if you have to wait around for your appointment which does happen. My hospital said to use whatever cream I already used - but as I didn’t really use anything my friend gave me an aloe vera plant and when I got home I would cut the leaves and slather that all over myself.  She also said to drink loads of diet cola as the electrolytes attack ? the free radicals ??? - ooops now can’t remember which way round that might be. I did tell the radiographers and they had heard about this and were quite happy for me to do it.  Well, I had no problems at all, skin just got a bit pink then went brown - a lovely square!  Also lots of brown spots appeared, but disappeared after a couple of weeks.  After rads have finished the couple of weeks after that are when more skin problems can occur as the body keeps ‘cooking’.  Be careful to keep out of the sun/cover up/use sun blocker - & I think that needs to happen for quite a long time.  Sorry to hear about the hot flushes & heat at this time doesn’t help.  Have read on here that some people get some help from various types of tablets - there will be someone along to help you here I’m sure.  Will you be taking any hormone treatment?  Keeping everything crossed that rads are ok for you, but this site is great for finding out anything you need. :catvery-happy:

Hi Lesley. I can’t recommend a chillow highly enough. A magical cool pillow, which saved my sanity when enforced menopause set in a few years ago. Also a silk pillowcase is something I now use, as it’s cooler than cotton.<

I shall think of you tomorrow. I’m a little behind on you, in that my surgery is tomorrow. I feel calm at the moment but have some anxiety about whether the results will confirm or change treatment plan. I’m trying not to second guess and focussing on batch baking scones for the freezer - very good distraction for me!! Xx

Thank you and I hope the pillowcases work - added bonus if you have curly hair, silk pillowcases help manage frizz! I too have always been woman in control and trying to embrace the Unknown it’s hard isn’t it? I shall be so grateful to get rid of the invader tomorrow. Good luck with first session x

Hi Lesley, I had WLE and SNR in April last year followed by 15 RT sessions.  I used a gentle deodorant as soon as the wound from the SNR had healed up but was very careful to avoid the scar. I never used it, however, before a treatment and made sure my skin was clean of any moisturiser.  I only had a bit of pinkness so don’t know if this helped. I too had a half hour journey to and from the RT centre - and for the whole 3 weeks it was hot and sunny so I was always apologising to the lovely staff about any whiffs! I was a bit anxious for the first one because my BC was in the left breast and I had to hold my breath for 20 seconds while being zapped but, mad as it sounds, I got to almost enjoy lying peacefully in the dark concentrating on my breathing. Good luck, I’m sure you will be fine.

Lesley you are allowed to use DO as long as no aluminium or other metals in it.  You can get natural ones from Holland & Barratt.  Also just take some wipes in your bag if an extra hot day xx

Hi ladies, I used my normal deodorant during rads, I wasn’t having any to my armpit so they said it would be fine which it was, every hospital seems to have different guidelines but in my experience nothing I used caused any reaction Xx Jo 

Charts, mine was under my arm too, not in the actual armpit though, but told just whole breast irradiation, no nodes.  Must be another depends which NHS Trust you are in type thing. xx

LOL I was thinking the same thing when someone said it went the the edge of their boob…I am still in bed (yes very lazy, but knackered again for some reason at the moment) & I thought mine is halfway round under my arm it too.  xx

Well, just back from first rad.  I was petrified but having worked myself up into a state it wasn’t that bad.  First, deodorant, I got a Pritrok from Boots (no aliminium) they said it was ok to use.  Mine is also left side but didn’t have to do any breath holds.  The worse thing for me was having to hold my arms above my head as I have trouble with my shoulders so was very uncomfortable by the end.  One down fourteen to go xx

Really pleased you got through the first one.  You get used to arranging yourself to minimise the yanking from the sore side.  Must be a relief to be clean & fresh again.  They should give told you non aluminium roll on is fine from a week after surgery.  Another thing they don’t tell you is that if you massage your boob after you finish treatment, it goes back to it’s normal feel (it’s a bit rubbery when rads finish). xx

So glad 1st one done and no breath holds. I’m a leftie too, so reassuring. WLE done today but was so delayed into theatre, I have to stay over :frowning: Boy do I have a turquoise boob!

Hi Lesley and thank you again! Me and my turquoise friend are home and I’ve had the best cup of tea ever (I guess I ought to lay off gin for a while!). I was last on the list and the wire doctor wasn’t free on time, hence the delay. I have to go back on 5th for definitive results. So pleased your dose was better today. It’s so helpful to be on this site. The two women I was with yesterday hadn’t heard of it. All dosed up for now, so complete lack of focus helping! X

Hi Jayne. I’m hoping all goes well for you. If you like to bake and craft cake, come and find us in hormone treatment thread. Especially if you need a smile. I’m smiling, as I think this may be the thread I first met you Lesley, Rubycat and Charys?!
The waiting is sometimes the very worst bit of this journey and we are all on it with you. Xx

Hi Lesley, how did it go? I’ve had surgery and waiting for rads. I’ve also just come off HRT and have another condition to deal with so I’m following you with interest! I am also up and down with anxiety. It didn’t help that was due to have the planning scan today but they messed up the appointments so I didn’t and no date yet. Hope it all went well for you xx