Severe reaction to first chemo session


I was diagnosed with BC on 6th December. TIreatment is: chemo straightaway to shrink the tumour (over 2cms) and depending on how well the tumour shrinks will determine what type of surgery I will be offered and then 6 weeks of radiotherapy. Had the first chemo session two weeks ago (DC) and suffered a severe reaction and had to be hospitalised for three days. Is it usual to feel so ill after the first session? Do things get better as you get into the treatment? Can’t believe I have to go through this again as my next chemo session is booked for next Thursday, 17th January. Any advice - would be really grateful. Jacqui

Hi Jacqui
Sorry to hear you had such a rough time. Have the nurses spoke to you about changing any aspect of your next chemo? After my first one it took ages for the blood counts to come up and it had to be delayed, so the nurses talked to the oncologist and it was reduced by 20% next time. They might give you different anti-sickness drugs. It might be worth phoning the nurses to see if they have talked to your onc.
Good luck

Hi Jacqui,

Sorry you have been feeling so poo.
I started chemo last february and am now on the mend.

The first chemo session I had (FEC) absolutely knowcked me for six within about 2 hours of leaving the hospital. I couldn’t stop being sick and had to call the doc out 2 times through out the night until finally a second injection in the butt did the job. I then slept solidly for a week and a half and then slowly started to pick up again until the next time of course.

Each session from then on (6 in total) followed the same pattern. Each one is tough but it is do-able. Set yourself little targets, things to do on your good weeks, maybe dinner with the girls, shopping trips etc etc. Make sure you always have something to look forward to. I had my weekends planned way in advance and even managed to get away to the coast for the weekend a couple of times.

Do exactly as your body tells you, if your tired - sleep, if you have no energy - rest, if you fancy food that you wouldn’t normally eat - eat it.
My mum was dx 1 week after me, i’m 29 she was 52. We both had treatment together, op, chemo, rads etc etc but I found that mum was in denial some what. She tried to soldier on as if nothing was happening and a lot of the time chemo got the better of her and she ended up feeling worse than if she would have rested.

If your still feelling sicky, talk to the chemo nurses about your anti-sickness drugs. Its took three sessions to get mine right but eventually they put me on a drug called Nozinan. Apparently its the creme-de-la-creme of anti sickness and it certainly did the job for me.

I’m now 1 year post dx and am well on the mend. I’m getting married in 7 weeks and can’t wait.
Be strong, be brave and take each day as it comes.

Take Care

Mandy xxx