September 2017 Chemo Starters

Hi Ladies


Welcome to the forum.


This thread is for anyone starting chemo this month. Hopefully you can all help and support each other through it!


I will pop in from time to time and try and answer any questions you may have. I had chemo last year so sharing my experiences may also help.


Best wishes

Sue xx

Hi Sue C


I was thinking there must be a September 2017 thread starting soon, so thanks for starting this thread. I start my chemo on 6th September, still can’t believe I am talking about myself and chemo in the same sentence. I am sure your experiences will be very helpful. I will be glad to get started as the sooner it starts the sooner it will be over!


Rhona xx

Hi Rhona and welcome.
I’m sure there will be other ladies joining us soon, but in the mean time, let me know if you have any questions. I’ll try to help as much as possible. Do you know what you’re having?
Sue xx

Thank you for starting this thread - I start FEC tomorrow so I hopefully qualify for a Sep start group as the August ladies are already old hands at this! Going for a wig appointment today and getting a shopping list together prepping for chemo- is like preparing for armageddon! Good luck to all x

Hi MrsMeow (great name by the way!) and welcome.
Yes its a good idea to prepare, especially for the first week. Stock up the fridge, get the washing done, and get all the meds that you may need. Then you can sit back and relax and let others take care of you.
Best of luck for tomorrow.
Sue xx

Hi all. grateful for the thread. I too start my FEC tomorrow so looking forward (?!) to sharing experiences with others in the same boat.
best of luck to you all!
Jacqui x

Can I ask…Other than food in the fridge for my kids, any other advice on prep tips for chemo?? Thanks

I was meant to start chemo last week but now could be end of this week. Having tchp over 2 days so an august and September starter now!
I have tried to prepare. This is my list:
Wig and soft hats/scarves
Fragrance free organic shampoo/conditioner
Aveeno oatmeal skin moisturiser
Alcohol free mouth wash
Kids soft toothbrush
Reading books
Light healthy food in fridge
Kids school stuff at the ready!
Claritin - people say helps with bone aches from herceptin
Herbal teas and coconut water to keep hydrated
Buckets for sickness
Epsom salts for soakin in bath
Antiseptic hand wash…

cath x

Hi Sue

Thanks for starting this thread. I’m starting FEC this Friday. Feeling anxious and trying to get prepared over the next two days ? Out of interest, why ibuprofen and not paracetamol? Is anyone else going to try the cold cap? xx

Hi Jacqui
I didn’t cold cap as I’m not sure how successful it is. I hated losing my hair, but resigned myself to wearing scarves. I got used to it after a while and then my hair grew back quite quickly. I stopped wearing the scarves 4 months after chemo had finished. Now I’m managing short curly hair, whereas I had long straight hair! Xx

Good luck to those starting tomorrow - which no longer includes me!!

What a day! - went for a wig fitting and am too naturally curly to have anything on prescription - the specialist couldn’t believe there was nothing to match without me paying and is actually challenging this by sending a picture of my own hair to the decision makers to get them to fund me a wig - but I came home with nothing or I would have done if my car hadn’t broken down an hour from home then after waiting  90mins for breakdown got a phonecall saying my chemo needs to be delayed by a week to give my gum more chance to heal after the big tooth extraction last week. So bloods again on Monday and chemo starting Wednesday - which will give me a chance to get a new car battery! Hope everyone gets on ok x

Thanks for the list ladies, hoping I don’t need the bucket :smileyhappy:

Hello! First FEC down - small triumph! All good - fingers crossed that it stays like that!  Just ate some crumpets - terrified to stuff my face incase I’m sick. I do love my food so need to be careful cos I’m already overweight and the steroids may pile it on, so need some control!


I’ve ordered my wig - she’s called Maria! Really looking forward to spending some time with her. My husband woudl have preferred a blonde Farrah Fawcett- Majors circa 1978 stylee…tough! I’m actually quite excited about getting my hair allcut off on Friday.


Ready to relax with a bin bag full of drugs! And a cup of tea. 

Onwards and upwards everybody. Hope you are all having a good day, whatever you’re up to!

Love and hugs galore

Jacqui x

Hi, Im due to start this month - 6 x TC.  My oncologist told me that if chemotherapy and side effects were on a scale of 1 to 10 my treatment would be 4 so very manageable - he made it sound like a walk in the park.  Came home and looked up TC and a lot of views and experiences seem to tell a different story!  I would be interested to hear if anyone else is having TC.


Great list by the way and good luck to everyone else starting this month.



Good afternoon everyone, so sorry that you find yourself here but you’ve deffo done the right thing by joining a monthly chemo thread, it was the best thing I did.  


I was exactly where you are now but in September 2013, being able to talk to others on the same treatment as me was a godsend, being able to come on here at 3am when the rest of the world is asleep to ask if anyone had experienced XYZ and to have someone say “yep that happened to me too” was so comforting.  We did migrate to a secret fb group and many of us are still in touch to this day.


I was 49 when diagnosed in July 2013, in the August I had a right side skin sparing mx with temporary implant, micro & macro mets were found in the sentinel node so a week later I went back under the knife for an axillary clearance 11 nodes were taken, thankfully all were clear, then 10th September I started 6 x FEC-T, no rads, reconstruction surgery 6 months later, then about 8 months after that I had the left side reduced to match.


I didn’t cold cap, I wore a mixture of beanie hats and a wig, I bought scarves but chose not to wear them as I felt like a victim in them.  TIP get something to wear on your head in bed, come the winter my head was freezing in bed!


I have just had my 4th clear annual mammo since treatment ended, my hair has grown back & I have the boobs of a 20 yr old (every cloud and all that :-))


I will pop in from time to time & will try answer your queries.


my oncologist directed me to Macmillans website for information about the chemo drugs.  It has an A to Z of every chemo drug, if you go to their site put in their search bar ‘Chemotherapy drugs and combination regimes’ you can look up your regime to find out its side-effects and what I found very useful is it detailed when you’re immune system is likely to be at its lowest.


the best advice I was given was to drink at least 2 litres of water the day before, the day of and the day after infusion.  I had FEC first which tends to make you feel nauseous a couple of hours later, take all the meds they give you, at the times they told you, DO NOT WAIT till you feel sick as by that time you’ve probably left it too late!


best of luck xx

Hi Sue, congratulations on the good mammo result.


My curls went after about a year/18 months

Strangely though there is a girl in my group who before treatment had hair so curly which she hated so much that she would have it chemically straightened, yet after chemo & to this day it is dead straight lol

Thanks Rhona. should have bought the bucket after all! All ok though and going for an event free nights sleep! night to you x

brilliant news Mrs miaow about the wig! so the should too! my husband would have preferred a blonde Farrah Fawcett-Majors stylee circa 1978…never mind Nige!

Hi Tattyed,
I’m starting TC tomorrow alongside pertuzamab and herceptin. I’ve been warned it’s going to be a rough ride mainly with diarrhoea and fatigue. This could be due to having all four rather than just the TC. We can compare side effects. I think the TC is safer for the heart.
Cath x

Hello everyone

I’m a September starter too so would be great to join this group.  I’m having my PICC line in on Monday but don’t have an actual start date for my FEC-T as the chemo unit is very full - there’s a lot of cancer around in Bristol at the moment! I’m feeling a bit apprehensive and still a bit sore post mastectomy, but also keen to start and blast this thing asap (I have grade 3, stage 3 : ER+ PR+ HER2- 1 lymph node multicentric disease with largest  tumour being 70mm).

My youngest child starts school next week- very gradually.  Does anyone have any idea whether I’m likely need to get in extra help with kids? Looking at past threads, people seem to have quite different experiences.

Also, I have been given a lot of lovely gifts included scented washes and creams- any idea why non perfumed toiletries are recommended please- do they just not smell great or does your skin get very sensitive?


Thank you, Jo x