Spring into chemo in March

Hi, I am due to start chemo in 1st week of March. Does anyone have any advice on how to prepare?
I am having FEC and I think cold cap too. I am peaceful about it but expect I’ll be nervous as the day approaches. It’s the unknown isn’t it? I have been almost totally “un-worried” if that is possible, with one wobble when my cancer was upgraded from 2 to 3 (double originally thought size, and 2 types of cancer present. However I understand that all the cancer was removed with clear edges, and clear lymph nodes, so I am very thankful for that. The chemo and radiotherapy and hormone treatments to follow are, I understand, a precautionary measure.

Hi Angela and welcome to the BCC forums

I am sure your fellow users will be along soon with hints and tips for coping with chemo and there is a thread running which you may also find useful to take a look at, here’s the link:


Please feel free to call our helpliners for further support ideas, information and a listening ear on 0808 800 6000, lines are open 9-5 weekdays and 10-2 Saturdays

Take care


Thank you Lucy BCC. I will check this out.

Hi Angela,
I have been hedging posting as I have not had confirmation yet that I will be having chemo, yet to see the onc to discuss future treatment. However, if I am I suspect I will be starting in March!
I have been following the February Valentines thread which has useful information in the first few pages. They also explain how they are coping with the chemo, and what sort of SEs they are experiencing. Forewarned is forarmed!! I have found this helpful in coping with the idea of such treatment.
I will pop back in if/when I get confirmation of my own treatmen plan.
Best wishes,

Hi Angela,

I’m one of the February Valentines, but my chemo has been delayed due to additional surgery so I won’t be starting until mid to late March. My oncology appointment is 5th March. I will pop in here as well as the February group.

I’ve decided not to have the cold cap. My own hair is baby fine, so not a very good base for starters. Even on cold cap ladies get a lot of thinning, and I really don’t fancy putting myself through all that pain and discomfort, not to mention an extra couple of hours in the chemo unit every time. I have already bought a wig that I am happy with for every day use, and a bit nearer the time I will buy another one to wear as best, plus some hats.

I am being treated at the East Lancs NHS Trust for everything apart from radiotherapy, which will be at Preston. I was initially diagnosed December 2012. Grade 3 invasive ductal with some high grade DCIS, lump was 15mm. no evidence of vascular invasion and no lymph node involvement, HER2 positive, hormone negative. WLE and SNB in January, second excision February to get larger margins on the DCIS - not got the results of this yet. Will be having chemo, herceptin, and rads.

Best wishes to everyone xxx

Hi Angela, I’m also one of the February Valentines. I’m on Fec T. Had my first Fec on 5th Feb, second one due on 28th. Thankfully I didn’t have too many problems AND NO SICKNESS OR NAUSEA. Let’s hope it stays that way. At the top of the ‘Undergoing Treatment, Chemotherapy’ threaads, there is a sticky thread which I would advise you to read, copy, print out, whatever, as it is full of hints and tips, including a recipe for Go Cake. Think you might get what that is for!! Good luck when you get a date, and for rads and hormones too.

Hugs, Poemsgalore xx

Hi Angela , I’m also a valentine onto my second round of FecT , you sound quite calm but I agree it’s the unknown that’s worries u the most , actually getting the chemo itself is not that scary , my advice is wear gloves if ur having a cannula as warm hands make it easier & the first week is the hardest but " do able "
I agree with Christine if u read Febs post u will pick up a few tips , best for me have been corsodyl alcohol free mouth wash , salt water as mouthwash & a soft toothbrush , plus fizzy drinks like ginger ale & lukozade but a lot will recommend senokot !! Everyone has different SE’s. most of all i have found this site very helpful just for support , tips & not being alone on the rollercoaster , whether you post on Febs valentines or I’m sure a March one will start , they are a help even if u dont post a lot , good luck xx

Hi Angela,
I am expecting to start chemo in March too, having had Mx for grade 2 ILC, triple positive, so will be followed by rads, herceptin and hormone therapy. Have another appointment with Onco next week to confirm which regime and will then also know a start date.
Looking foward to sharing support through this link along the way.
Good Luck

thanks everybody for sharing your thoughts and advice.
Christine, I hope you get away without the chemo, but if not, i wish you all the very best. let us know how things go
Lola, i’m thinking maybe i won’t have the cold cap too, if there is still hair loss, i think i’d rather lose it all than just go thin! i will try to get to somewhere that gives advice on wigs hats & scarves instead. I hope your app on 5/03 goes well and that the results are what you are hoping for.
poemsgalore, all the best for FEC 2 on 28th, and lets hope the SE’s are not too bad.
Karen, i’ll take gloves to wear for warmth… especially if it’s as cold as today!
Casssowary, all the best with your onc app next week. I’m going to ask for a tour of the chemo ward when i have mine on wednesday - i understand that could help allay any fears.
It’s a shame we all have found it necessary to be on a site like this, but let’s try to make the best of it (easier said than done some may say!) positive thoughts and lots of comedy movies for the laugh, and encouraging messages (as well as being real when down. I’m sure there’ll be those of us who will be “up” when others are “down” and we can take it in turns to encourage.
look forward to hearing from you all more
all the best
PS is anyone in london at Kings for treatment?

Can i Just poke my nose in to say my wife Marg used the plastic surgical gloves, they make your hand sweat and the veins really stick ou,t plus they are free from the hospital.

Hi Everyone,

I think my chemo will be starting in March too … I’m having node biopsy next sunday (praying for no involvement) then a MX planned for the the week after - so thinking about it my chemo may not start until April. But I would love to join you on the journey.

I have a 8 yr old and a 16month old daughter who I live alone with - so slightly nervous as to how well I’ll cope with them and chemo!

Hoping to pick up lots of tips and offer my support to you all.

Victoria x x

Thanks for that tip Kevin - sounds a good plan.

Victoria - they won’t normally start chemo until your operation wounds have healed properly so it looks like it might be April for you. I could be wrong. I often am!! I really do not envy you having your two young children to look after during chemo - I hope you have family to help you out.

Hello ladies
I am just popping in from the March 2012 thread. Sorry you have had to join this forum, but I am sure you will find the support on here invaluable. I had an mx Jan 2012, followed by chemo (FEC-T), rads and I am now on Tamoxifen. I just wanted to let you know that although chemo is very scary, it is certainly do-able and you will get through it. Some of the SE’s are not pleasant but they are manageable.
If you want to read our thread, it has now been moved into the ‘after treatment has finished’ section. Many of the ladies on our thread met up last November for a weekend together after our treatment had finished. We are also meeting up next weekend. You are sure to make life-long friends with the ladies who you go through treatment with.
I will be popping back from time to time to see how you are getting on, but in the meantime wish you well and hope that your se’s are mild. Remember to be kind to yourselves and try to just take each day as it comes instead of worrying about what is around the corner.
Onwards and upwards ladies!
Joan xxx

Good luck to all the Marchies. Just make sure you get medication for any side effects you experience. Many of the nasties can be treated.

Yes, second what Maire has said. No point suffering when you can prevent it.

GOOD LUCK MARCHIES, or are you March hares? Whoops, maybe not hares then .

yes thanks for the tip kevin, i’ll try that too.
i can now tie a scarf easily. i’m a bit cack handed with hair and scarves, but a nigerian lady in my church showed me an easy way to do it that suited me, so i’m a little more prepared now. there are some good demos on youtube on tying scarves and wraps if you feel so inclined to experiment. i’m quite looking forward to re-inventing myself!! next is the make up. i don’t want to look ill even when i feel it if i could get how to download a picture of me in one, i will do it but it doesn’t seem to do it for me.

I found this on another thread - lookgoodfeelbetter.co.uk/site/index.cfm I hope you find a local one. I don’t really go in for make up day to day, but if I end up with chemo, I will probably learn how to replace my eyebrows!


hi MM, at 64, i don’t usually use make up from day to day either, i cant be bothered. however, i fell i need to make a little more effort for myself than normal. maybe not daily, but when i go out or have friends /family round. of course, once the treatment starts, all that may go out of the window!!! we’ll see
ps i think there’s a look good feel better at st thomas in london near me so i’ll have a look thanks

Hi Angela,
I too am popping in from the February valentines to wish yougood luck with your treatment . Hope you find this site as comforting as I have.
If you want to put a picture of yourself here you can always add one to your profile as some of us have done.
Take care,

thanks millymolly
i did try to upload a photo, but for some reason it didn’t work. i’ll try again and see what happens