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Starting Chemo in December.2012

TraceyLJ
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

Hi, this is my very first post!! Hi Cybele the pic of you is great I too was wondering what the cold cap looked like. I hope you have a good night.
I have just had my oncology appointment today - chemo to start 27th.. had mx and reconstruction with LD on 19th Nov.
Was definatley thinking of having the cold cap, dreading the hair loss, more so because I have 2 youngsters (Boy 6yrs / Girl 3yrs)
They know I'm poorly, but I have yet to tell them about the chemo.
Would love to join the Crackers.....
lolly123
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

hi cybele,
it was good to read your message sounded very positive for those of us who are still waiting to go through chemo for the first time, was glad to see the cold cap too was wondering what it looked like, and also to hear how it was, going to defo try it now ....... well done hope you have a good night tonight.

lolly
ps was going to change my profile picture to show my new hair style but cant upload it as too big so will have to try again later with a differnet picture
x
Cybele
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

Hey, no one told me that chemo makes you STONED :)))))

After all that fear and loathing and angst, it was fine. The chemo team at the Charing Cross hospital were brilliant, I was VERY well looked after, and my sister was there with me, which was great, as you can't move round very much with the chemo drip in one arm, and wearing the cold cap attached to the machine.

So far, like Maire, I have mostly just been feeling very woozy and spaced out, but it's not particularly unpleasant, just odd. Very minor feelings of nausea, but I had the industrial strength anti-emetic intravenously beforehand, and the nausea doesn't seem to be getting any worse (touch wood)

The cold cap was quite painful for the first 5 -10 minutes, but then that subsided, and my head just felt kind of cold and tingly for the rest of the time - again, not unpleasant, but I don't mind the cold.

In the taxi on the way back from the hospital, I said 'I can't believe I've actually had chemo', and my sister replied 'I can't believe you've had chemo and been so cheerful about it' - (OK I might have been bouncing off the walls last night)
My partner is SO relieved, as well!

The nurse said the side effects really kick in after 2 or 3 days, after you stop taking the steroids, so this may be the calm before the storm, but so far, so not-too-horrific

I will count it as a major result if I manage to get through tonight without spending a lot of it with my head down the loo, vomiting. At the moment, it doesn't seem as if that is going to happen (touch wood touch touch touch wood)

Love and hugs to you all - we can do this!
And that's 1 down and only 5 to go! Yay!

ps the new profile pic is me in the cold cap, obvs.
Wendy56
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

Hi Caroline 60

will be thinking off you tomorrow as I too have an onc appointment. Only diagnosed last Friday things are moving too quick for me really scarey

Wendy
Caroline60
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

Hi all, Iv also been told beetroot juice is good for the blood. Marie advised it is vile but to mix it with other juices. Iv got oncol appointment tomorrow.
Iv decided no cold cap as it sounded like torture. If all is well I anitcipate starting on the 28th. I am very anxious as I am on antibiotics for asperation procedure and hope I dont have to wait too long. I realise as a result of having surgery first - I am not being treated at 100 miles per hour by the BC team - which it felt like when I was first diagnosed.

Keep healthy and eat heathy - say she who has been eating chrisps.
lolly123
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

good evening everyone, hope you are feeling resonabley well. i have had my echocardiogram today, weard hearing your own heart beat, i have been told my picc line is going in on the 27th and first chemo on the 31st, can anyone tell me where the picc line goes is it in the is it in the upper arm or near the elbow, just wondering really, also do i have to make appointment to get a wig fitting or will they contact me, as she didnt mention anything about the wig. i am going to try the cold cap but want a back up incase i can do it as heard it is quite painful and i am a bit of a wimp when it comes to the cold.
lolly
x
ps going to try and upload a new picture of me with my shorter hair later x
snodby
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

Hi everyone...
my first time ever on a forum was diagnosed with BC in August have had two lumpectomy surgeries one node removed (Node was clear thankfully). Then got told that I needed chemo radiotherapy and then tamoxaflin due to my age and had just started to enter vessels.. Felt like I did when I got the original diagnosis ...
had my first chemo 30/11.... Had my hair cut short previous and went and bought a wig..but I decided to have the cold cap along with treatment to try and save some of my hair makes the time spent having treatment longer ..very uncomfortable gave me the feeling of motion sickness....can understand why people say get it off!...
not had too many side effects was wiped out for about 5days....felt nauseous and bad taste in mouth and heartburn.
back for my 2nd session 21st not looking forward to it so near to Christmas , but look at it as only 4 to go next year....
shellebelle
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

Afternoon Christmas Crackers. Had my first cycle of EC yesterday and it wasn't too bad. Strange tingling 'down below' when the steroids went in but she did warn me first, arm went cold from the chemo drugs going in so had heat pad on which was nice relief. 2 Red/Pink wees afterwards from the epirubicin, also warned about that. Felt ok rest of day but struggled to sleep until about 2am (could have been the steroids or just worried about what might happen) but finally dropped off for a few hours. Touch wood, no nausea or sickness symptoms so far (nibbled ginger biscuits and have some ginger beer to sip also) and haven't noticed anything else odd yet, apart from not going to the loo so perhaps more fibre required! On the other hand, drinking loads of fluids, which is a challenge for me, and peeing like a camel (just thought I'd share).
@Maire, My colleague who is having same treatment as me, but 2 weeks ahead, has suffered with sickness, sore throat, skin, scalp, gums and even her butt!!! Has been on oral antibiotics already once as a preventative for the sore throat amd now a week later admitted to hospital for intraveneous antibiotics as temp went to 38.6 so she hasn't had the best start. She has been quite sociable, Christmas shopping in a very busy Leeds City and out for pub lunches with family as well as meeting up with friends, so perhaps you aren't being too paranoid about picking up bugs and I guess it's all about minimizing the risks where possible.
We're all different and won't suffer the same side effects at the same time or even at all, but it's good to read everyone's experience, get tips and cheer each other on and take comfort from each other where we can.
Shell xx
mggdggn@yahoo.co.uk
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

Hi everyone,
I suffered with terrible constipation after the lumpectomies all the pain killers helped the pain but caused very distressing constipation. Going to the toilet was a nightmare especially if you have to hold your chest because you are scared that you might cause damage to your wound. I found beet root juice a godsend,' Beet it' is a brand on the market, Tesco sells at £2.75, Holland and Barrat £4.99. I have a full glass mixed with pure apple juice every day, and it's great. I only every went to the loo most weeks 2-3 times before, so to have found a miracle cure is a blessing. Please note your wee can turn pink lol, going through the whole colour chart, had blue wee with the sental node injection...lol
Hope this idea helps you ladies that are suffering
Maggie x
Cathie_C
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

Hello everyone ,
gosh how I relate to all you say. Collected wig this morning never sure if you have made right choice because its just the wrong circumstances. I still have infraction and boob is very red so they have changed antibiotics but I still have to go for horrid PICC line tomorrow and they will make a decision about whether chemo goes ahead Thursday. Husband hoping it does because I am in such a heightened state of anxiety, Lets all go to Goa! Just wish I could get to the feeling positive stage and not be so damn scared bit I know I am not alone, thank you all and good luck to us all.
Cathie xx
Wendy56
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

Hi Sharon
1 of 5 is ok as think it means had started to travel but probably had got no further. Did you have a snb beforehand ? Mine was 1 out 5 14 years ago
good luck for next week will post on here any news from my onc app tomorrow. Very busy this week as now have bone scan Friday and CT Saturday to be honest it's this bit I am dreading more than the op or chemo
Wendy
Caroline60
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

Sorry hand gel.
Caroline60
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

Marie i understand the mass thing. I must tell my husband to take alcohol had gel with him.

Hi ladies, keep well.
Caroline60
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

Hi ladies, i had my hair cut short last thursday. I was very emotional but was told i really suit it. My consultant said i really suited the very very short cut. I looked in the mirror and i look like a slimmer version of my younger brother. I laughed loudly and asked my husband do i resemble.

Thank you for all the support - I was really at the end of my thether. I also know that my aches and pains are to to with the healing process after having a mx with recon.
Shaz1234
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

Hi Ladies well i am back from hospital they removed 5 nodes and only one of them had cancer so i guess that was good!
POLLY 1 Im so sorry your not coping too good at the minute im sending you (((Hugs))) Children are funny aren't they that did make me smile when you said that.
MAIRE you have done very well, i hope my first lot of Chemo will go as well as your has. I think i would feel the same as you if my son wasn't well too. I would be so scared of getting to close. Its such a shame on our children all they want is a hug from us when they are poorly.
CRESSIDA i hope you enjoyed your christmas shopping?
WENDY good luck with your appointment tomorrow.
Love Sharon Xx
polly_1
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

Morning ladies, sorry I've not posted for a while. I've been checking how everyone is doing but when I try to write something end up on floods of tears (incoherent ramblings quickly deleted!). To be honest I've been just about holding things together for my kids sake and feeling pretty low. I told them yesterday about my cancer and me going back in for another op using the nhs book Mummys Lump and feel like a weight has been lifted off me. My 6 year old son was most disappointed that he won't get time off school to visit me in hospital!
Shaz 1234 thinking of you today,fingers crossed for you x
Cybele, Cressida and anyone else having treatment this week best of luck xx
Marie, so pleased your getting on ok. It's so reasurring to hear that your first one has been better than you thought. I'm back in tomorrow for more surgery so am now looking at January before I start chemo. Really hoped I'd be a Christmas Cracker. Best of luck everyone x
Maire
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

Hi folks.
Good luck with all the various appointments this week-esp if you're getting chemo. I'm on day 13 now and in all honesty it hasn't been too bad. If it's like this all the way through it'll be easy. Yes i really did say that! I have not been ill. Only a bit nauseous for the first 5 days and with a slightly woozy brain. Since then it's really been ok.
It's the fear that paralyses you. I have been so worried about ending up in hospital Every slight twinge in my throat has had me reaching for the salt water to gargle and I know I'm going to get increasingly worried about this as chemo progresses. I just can't switch off that worry switch.
Yesterday my 10 year old was off school with a virus. She'd a temperature and burny eyes and a sore throat. I didn't want to go near her! My wee 10 year old girl! That really is crap.
But not everyone will be like me. Other people work through chemo and manage. Maybe work keeps their mind off the heebie jeebies.
Another plus is that all my hair is firmly attached to my head. It's not looking too pretty but I do have unruly hair and I can't be bothered trying to tame it. I've been told I will def lose it so I am prepared but at least you get a wee bit of time before you're baldy.
Also I've had no constipation. Well maybe one slow day (sorry) but otherwise bowels have been normal. No mouth ulcers or thrush yet. I bought cheap toothbrushes from Tesoc (2 for 18p) and I'm using one a week then binning them. Having the odd swish around with salt water too.
I guess maybe the side effects are cumulative and they'll hit me later on but for all of you waiting in the wings please be assured it is not as bad as the image you have in your head.
Oh and eat healthy. I'm treating myself to lots of smoothies and iron rich foods just in case!
All the best. xxx

Cressida
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

Morning ladies,

Caroline - I hope you are feeling better.

Lolly, Butterfly, Teal and Shaz - it's mad isn't it how we have cancer but we care about our hair. Hair is part of our feminine identity. People say stupid things like, "it will grow back" but they don't shave theirs off in sympathy. Re wigs; your hosp should have a prosthetics dept (yes, the place for false legs) where they should offer you an appiontment to try some NHS wigs and head scarfs etc. They still charge you about £70 (if you decide to get a wig) but it is a start to see how you feel about wigs and to try some on, even if you decide you don't want one, or you can afford a posh real hair one.

Cybele - hope you managed to get to the hospital and have the evil chemo. I have to start my second course on thursday and my hubbie will take me in case I run away. I keep thinking they might have to tie me to the chair like a child who does not understand why they need horrible medical treatments.

Can't make up my mind about xmas - might try a bit of shopping today as it feels like my last chance to go to crowded, unsanitary places. Don't want to be a complete humbug about xmas day, so would like to have pressies for my husband and parents even if I send no cards and don't get anything for anyone else.

Hi ho, its off to the xmas shops I go....
Wendy56
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

Good luck everybody for today it seems a busy week for everyone and let's hope some good comes out of it. I think we are all fed up with doom and gloom.
i have my first oncology appointment tomorrow and snb next tuesday
wendy
Shaz1234
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

Hi Ladies, i will get my SNB results tomorrow i really hope its good news. I am going to see the wig lady weds which could be fun. Then my Chemo is the 19th (same as you SUPACHICK) The thought of losing my hair sares me to bits.
I am also absolutley frightened of getting a infection after my Chemo how are we going to avoid our familes when they have colds ect.
CYBELE good luck tomorrow with your Chemo. Xx
LOLLY123 Are you going to be using the cold cap?
CAROLINE60 Sorry to hear you had to go to hospital i hope your feeling a bit better and taking it easy. Xx
Good luck to any one else with appointments or Chemo this week.

Take care keep smiling Xx
Cybele
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

I couldn't sleep last night, and can't eat tonight. My stomach is just churning, and I've been completely hyper all day.
Can't really believe that I am actually going to have chemotherapy tomorrow. Have been feeling so much better the last couple of weeks, but now it's here I'm starting to lose it again.
It's a good thing my sister is escorting me to the hospital tomorrow, or I might still be tempted to do a runner..
OH GOD.
Teal
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

Hi everyone I saw my nurse today who happens to be friends with my parents, I took them along and she explained everything that I did not want to hear last week now I understand what type of cancer I have and treatment etc, had my ECG and blood taken and am hoping (though that is the wrong word but you know what I mean) to have my first chemo treatment next week, I just want to tick that one off the list then 5 more to go. I feel better today. I am not going to have the cold cap treament as it is not 100% and i want the chemo to zap every cell in my body, plus when they put it on my head last week to try it out it was so cold I dont think I can put myself through that as well - I am a complete whimp!!! I even make a fuss when I have blood taken, so god knows what I will be like when they put the chemo in. My husband has bought me an ipod so I can listen to some music while having treatment. Told my girls they can have that after I have finished with it. this made them very happy. Am going to take them along when I try wigs on, trying to get them involved they will like that, told them that they can have the wig when I have finished with it to dress up in. Lets hope my dog does not get it first like she did with the halloween wigs!!!
supachick
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

Christmas is definitely going to be different this year! My husband has said if we need to move it a couple if days until I feel better so be it- he has even offered to cook Christmas dinner! To be honest I think I will give the cold cap a miss and just embrase the baldness! I think I will be more disappointed if I get my hopes up of keeping my hair with the cold cap and it doesn't work rather than accepting I will loose it from the start. Not sure if to get a wig or not I can see two sides one it will allow me to go to tescos without everyone knowing I'm having chemo and will allow a sense of normality, bit I'm yet to find one I like!! What have you find best work for you?
xx
lolly123
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

thanks supachick, was wondering what to expect, it thought it was the sticker one, so thanks for the info.
good luck for the 19th, its not good just before christmas, but wish it was me as christmas this year seems to be the last thing on my list, can't even to be bothered to write cards out this year, my husband is the same, this is such a strange time of the year to try and get motivated and not be all doom and gloom. hope it all goes well, are you going to try the cold cap?
supachick
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

Hi Lolly
Just so you know an echo is where they will put cold jelly on your chest- to do an ultrasound of your heart, it takes about 20-30 mins compared to the ECG which is lots of stickers all over your chest- its quite normal before chemo-I'm a cardiac physiologist so do them all day- well until all this rubbish started!! Hope all goes well. Know how you feel the plan is for me to start on the 19th and just want to start so at least I will know how to feel/ what to expect!
lolly123
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

hi just a quick note, just had a call from the bcc unit and i have my ist date for chemo which wil be on the 31st december, had a bit of a melt down as was expecting to start next week, as i was lead to beleive, but i was told tonight that i am a non urgent case which made me feel so un important, but i then put it in pospective and thought there must be worse cases out there than me, and are in need of treatment urgently, goint to find out tomorrow when picc line is to go in as she thinks that will be done before x mas.
sorry to go on but needed to share x
lolly
x
Butterfly, you look like you would suit any hair style looking at your photo, such a lovely picture, i didnt feel brave at the time i cryed like a baby, but i loved my hair it was my best point, never mind all my work colleges says i look younger so there the good point of getting my hair cut short.
butterfly7
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

Caroline, sorry to hear this. Make sure you rest now as much as possible and I hope you are over the worst of it very soon xx
Welcome Supachick and good luck with the embryo freezing xx

Hi Lolly, you've been very brave. If I am definitely having chemo I will get my hair cut short beforehand too but am very scared of what it will look like as I am mixed race and have been chemically straightening my hair since I was 13 years old, which means it doesn't do well in damp or wet conditions so I will probably end up with a lovely short curly afro!!!! Not a good look lol xx
lolly123
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

hi caroline60 & all the christmas crackers,
so sorry to hear you had to go to hospital hope you are feeling a bit better today, it does you goot to have a good cry sometimes, i was a bit down yesterday for a different reason, feel a bit of a baby really as i had really long hair and my hairdresser came round yesterday and cut it quite short, but had to wash it first so it was a horrible thought it would be the last time for a long time i will have to spend about half an hour trying to get all the conditioner out of my long locks, but she done a great job and i look like a different person, thay all loved it at work, think it will take me a bit longer to get used to it, going to try the cold cap, hope i get on with it,
Going to hosiptal tomorrow to have a Echocardiogram, i take it that means a ECG, didnt even know i had to have one so that was a bit of a shock, still wating to have an appointment for my picc line to be put in, all this waiting around is doing my head in, just want to get strarted.
well thats enough about me, hope you are all baring up and wish you all the best, what ever stage you are at.
Caroline60
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

Hi Wendy, thank you. Im at home now and well and truly on the settee and under a duvet. I was given tramadol - and now get the side effects.

But on ward and up wards on this journey. I am trying to keep my chin up.
Wendy56
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

Bless you that is not good but hopefully you are sorted now

hugs
wendy
Caroline60
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

I feel physically exausted and had a good cry yesterday.
Caroline60
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

Hi Ladies, I was admitted into hospital yesterday. I had fluid around my new reconstructed breast and under my arm. I had it asperated this morning. The pain is less now and my consultand strictly advised me to have a duvet day. Which is really hard as i like to be on the go.
Cressida
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

Welcome Superchick,

You will get loads of suppport here and, hopefully, a laugh too. I have 2 days before I have to go back to the chemo suite (why do they call it that - it's not exactly the best room in a luxery hotel) so I am off to do some non cancer stuff. I am sure the other crackers will welcome you soon,

Cress, xxx
supachick
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

Hi Christmas crackers!
Looks like I will be joining you lovely ladies- was diagnosed with triple negative BC in November and have spent the last 3-4 weeks trying to grow some eggs so I can have some embryos frozen. Had a scan today and they think there are 10-12 in each ovary! So looks like I will have the egg collection this Friday and then start chemo on the 19th -a lovely Xmas pressie! Think I am in denial at the moment have been so focused on having some embryos stored ( had just started trying when this all began!) that I haven't really had time to think about chemo- although it is all starting to become very real! it's good to know that I'm not alone and it is reassuring reading the posts- although I have to admit I have become paranoid about infections and have started to shut myself away already! Will keep you updated!
Xxx
butterfly7
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

Hello Teal, sorry that you have had to join this group, however I'm sure you will find that the ladies here are very supportive and many including myself can relate with exactly how you are feeling. I also have 3 daughters, mine are aged 13, 11 and 7 so quite similar. I also have difficulty telling people what's wrong with me and tend to whisper the words 'breat cancer' as though its a dirty word you musn't say!!!
Maire, I think I will be exactly the same when I start chemo with regards to contact with people who may make me ill< must be so difficult not to overreact. Glad to hear you are doing well though xx
Well my morning has been a bit up and down. I had a lumpectomy and axillary node clearance 5 weeks ago and although I dont get official results from consultant until Friday I found out today in a phone call to my nurse that there was clear margin and only 1 lymph node affected, which really pleased me as I was becoming anxious as the results were getting nearer. Also there has been a cancellation and they may be able to give me an appointment this Wedneday with the oncologist instead of 31st December, but I may not know for definite until Wednesday morning!!!
Then I went to the hospital for my first physiotherapy appointment in good spirits and confident that they would say I wouldnt need to go back a I'm doing so well (wishful thinking). After asking how I was doing I proceeded to wave my arm about like a lunatic to show her how much movement I had. Well the disappointed look on her face told me all I needed and if I hadn't already got the message the shaking of her head made sure I knew. She told me she was very concerned that I am unable to straighten my arm or lift it above my head and keep it dead straight. Whilst she was massaging my arm I was told I also have cording and the wound area is very tight, let me tell you the massaging and her stretching it bl**dy hurt. She made me do several exercises and pointed out each time what I was doing wrong and gave me an extra two exercises to do alongside the usual nine three times a day and told me to get someone to massage my arm twice a day, which is a bit impossible as I am a single parent and don't fancy asking one of my girls to do it for me as it hurts me and that will put them off.
I was also told that I should not be doing housework as this will make it worse. I like this bit of advice .
I understand all of this is to help my recovery and I will take it all on board and follow it through, I was just a bit disappointed that I wasn't doing a well as I thought and that contrary to my own belief, I am not Superwoman!!
Good luck to all those having chemo this week xxxxxx
Maire
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

Oh Cressida, the image of your husband pulling you away from rough looking people really made me laugh-that's made my day!
I was at mass on Sunday and the man behind me was coughing and sneezing all the way through then the woman on my left stuck a sinus thing up her nose and later blew her nose into a snotty hanky. I just kept thinking "I have to shake these peoples' hands at the 'peace be with you'". Not the right frame of mind to be in at church!

Cressida
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

Morning crackers ladies,

Welcome Teal - we all recognise your feeling of being trapped in a nightmare. I still keep thinking that someone will tell me it was all a horrible mistake and I don't have cancer. I wouldn't even sue them, I'd be too busy booking holidays.

Lisalou - I had cold cap the first time - read back through this thread (I can't believe how long it is already). It worked for me but they have to get it tight on your head and they often tell you it won't work cos it is more work for them and takes longer. As for the day you start - just tell them about the birthday - they will book you in the day after - one day is nothing. You need to enjoy birthdays if you can.

Maire - I know what you mean about infection phobia. I am terrified of getting an infection mainly cos I hate hospitals so much and do not want to ba an inpatient. My husband is obsessive about anyone coming near me coughing or sneezing. We will be in the supermarket or somewhere and he will suddenly grab me and drag me away just as I am about to put my hand on something delicous, because he has seen someone nearby who "looks a bit rough". Avoiding rough looking people where we live is a challange....

On non cancer subjects - really enjoyed my mini christmas weekend, although the winter wonderland was no good as way too crowded on a saturday. They had to shut it for health and safety reasons. But the south bank had a christmas market and a chocolate festival. I am absolutly knackered as a result of trying to cram everything in before the chemo fairy gets me. Chilling out today before going out for an early xmas curry with my former work mates tonight.

Good luck to everyone havng chemo this week - as least christmas will be week 3 for us. Don't forget your tinsel.

xxx
Teal
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

Thank you so much It is hard isnt it and I think talking to other people who have or who are going through the same thing is good. Though I still feel that ok I may have had the BC but not anymore my surgeon told me he took it all out and the chemo is only in case there are any stray cancel cells in my body. I know I probably sound crazy but all this has been such a shock I dont know if I will ever get used to the idea that I had BC.

xxxxx
shellebelle
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

@Cybele I'm told my next cycle of chemo will be on Mon 31st December and bloods again done on the Friday. The nurse said they could repeat the bloods from the Friday if there was any doubt, via the cannula used to administer the chemo, but then if they weren't good I'd have had a cannula inserted and not used and have to come back again - this sounds like it could be painful on the old veins. Have an appointment to see Oncologist on 27th too so I'll check if either the day can be changed to a Tuesday, or I can have bloods done on same day, earlier perhaps.
Cybele
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

@Maire So glad you're finding it physically bearable - partly from the selfish reason that I am having my first FEC on tuesday and my anxiety levels are starting to go through the roof! Still thinking longingly of that plane to Goa i have been threatening t oget on for the last 3 months..

I agree with you that the mental side is the hardest - there's so much fear and anger and despair richocheting around your mind all the time. I keep thinking I've got to a place where I've really calmed down, and have acceptedthe whole thing, and am on top of it, and then some little thing happens and whoosh!, I'm in pieces again.

Re the isolation and fear of infection thing, it's been stressed to me repeatedly that infections are potentially lethal, and it does seem vital to stay at home as much as poss during days 7-14 of the cycle. I spoke to a woman who's already had chemo last week, and she said she hadn't really taken the risk of infection seriously, and had ended up in hsopital for 3 weeks - that put the fear of God into me...

@Teal Big Hug and welcome - it's horrible, isn't it? I was like you, convinced for ages that it was all a big mistake and would go away - I think you go slightly bonkers after the diagnosis, actually. I certainly did. I was more or less demented for a really long time (I was diagnosed in September, op at beginning of October), and it's only very recently that I've managed a) finally to accept that I REALLY HAVE got cancer, and that it's not going to go away of is own accord and b) stop feeling just physically and mentally BATTERED.

But one of the few cheering things in the whole situation is this forum, which has so much information and support - it is an absolute lifeline. And it's great having this thread where we are all going to be going through chemo TOGETHER. And in a year's time, as you say, we'll be able to look back on all this horribleness as a rapidly fading memory (touch wood)

@cathie I'm on Tuesday, so 2 days ahead of you - think of me as the canary going ahead of you down the mine! I got my PICC line on Friday, so have been getting used to the s***ing thing over the last 2 days - one thing, don't be alarmed if it bleeds a bit once you get home from the hospital. Mine did, and I noticed when I was going to bed and completely FREAKED -
Aaargh! The vein is open! I am going to bleed to death before the cancer gets me!
- but then I googled it and found that a bit of bleeding into the dressing around the point of insertion is entirely normal, and nothing to worry about!
Maire
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

Cathie-The positive points thing sounds good. I've been keeping a wee record of how I feel each day-side effects and also what I've achieved e.g put tree up,walked daughter to school etc. It really helps keep track of all the things you can do through chemo.

Cathie_C
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

Hi Teal
I am with you on every word you say my timing is about the same as yours and I feel everything you are feeling, it really is so scary and you make yourself go to the endless appointments hoping that they are just going to say it was all just a really bad dream. I have had to have some diazepam from doctors as not coping at all well, booked in for PICC line Wednesday with chemo Thursday that's if infection cleared up that I seem to have on affected boob! The ladies on this thread are amazingly supportive and although I have only recently signed up it is good to know that I can be totally honest and you all 'get it'. We can do this ( and I say this whilst shaking like a leaf and once again nearly in tears).
I send my sister three positive points each day, may sound daft as they can be as simple as I got up or I have only cried once or I hugged my husband and children (now I am crying) but I do this each day.
Cathie C
xx
Lucy_BCC
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

Hi Teal and welcome to the BCC forums where you will find lots of support and shared experiences from your fellow users

In addition, our helpliners are here Mon-Fri 9-5 and Sat 10-2 to offer you a listening ear, further support and information so please feel free to call on 0808 800 6000

I am posting a link to the BCC 'Treatments' page where you will find more support ideas from BCC such as the 'Headstrong' service' and information/publications which you may find helpful, there is a publication called 'Breast cancer and hair loss' which you can order or download to read:

http://www.breastcancercare.org.uk/treatment?utm_source=Homepage&%3Butm_medium=help_you&%3Butm_campaign=treatment

Take care

Lucy

Teal
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

Hi all I have recently been diagnosed with BC early October this year had a lumpectomy on my left breast and my surgeon removed 3 lymph nodes I went for the results and was told nodes were clear but I was a grade/Stage 3 cancer and would need to have chemotherapy and then radiotherapy - this was a total shock as I had been in denial about the whole BC thing still cant say the word, even now I dont think I have anything wrong with me and this has been an awful mistake. I had an appointment with the Oncologist on friday and made the mistake of going on my own thinking I can deal with all this BIG MISTAKE i saw a lady walk down the corridor with her partner and had just come out from having chemo she was wearing a scarf i just felt sick and thought I cant go through with this. They called me in and I broke down I told the Oncologist I did not want to talk about the BC and what type it is I know I have to have chemo and I will (i have 3 girls aged 11, 9 and 7) this is so hard for me at the moment and I know having read posts here I am not the only one. I dont want anyone to feel sorry for me but I think the chemo thing is the big issue for me losing my hair. I know this must sound pathetic but I am so frightened about that. They tried a cold cap on me to see how it feels and it was so cold and after a minute only I had to take it off. I have asked for my chemo to start asap b4 Christmas as I just want to get all this treatment over with asap and get on with my life. I think that once my hair does come out which they said will happen if I dont try the cap on the first chemo session - I will be ok and deal with it. I am not the only one I know this hoepfully this time next year this will all be a distance memory for me but at the moment this nightmare I have been in for the last 2 months is becoming very real. I think the hard part is the waiting game, waiting for appointments, results etc etc. Then there are days when I cant sleep, i have lost over a stone in weight (though this is not so bad as I heard you put on about 10lbs during chemo). I am going back to the hospital tomorrow to talk to the nurse that was in the meeting on Friday this time I am taking two people with me!!! I now have to face reality I suppose but it is hard not just for me but my family, parents children husband etc and friends. The only thing that keeps me going and positive is that I have to do this for my children and I am glad this is happening to me and not to them!!!! Sorry for the long post. xxx
Caroline60
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

Marie, thanks for giving the update its really helpful - it can sometimes be very isolating in this website.
Caroline60
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

Hi all please google this new bc drug its called Perjeta.
Cybele
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

@shellebelle I had my bloods done on Wednesday when I went in to see my oncologist and sign the consent forms, although I'm not starting chemo until next Tuesday. I asked him why the bloods weren't being done the day before chemo, as this was the impression I had got from reading this forum, and he said that for the first time it didn't matter: it's only AFTER you've had your first chemo that your platelet count , or whatever, drops dramatically, so for all the subsequent cycles you have to have your bloods done the day before to ensure you're strong enough to take the next dose of chemo. Before starting, your blood should be relatively normal, so the test doesn't have to be done the day before.

@lisalouw and @Shaz1234 - I think there is a thread somewhere on here just about the cold cap, which I read a couple of weeks ago, the results reported there it made it seem definitely worth a try. Also, my oncologist says they get pretty good results for some people with it, and I met a woman at the Haven last week who had used the cold cap and still had all her hair. It sounds quite unpleasant, but I'm going to give it a go.
Lisalouw
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

Hi Shaz, no not got my date yet , I'll know this thurs , fingers crossed it will be the 20 th as 19th is my sons 3rd birthday so really don't want it then , I thinks it's the fear of the unknown at the moment , I'm hoping I'll be able to have it at my local hospital and not have to travel , let me know how you get on wont you xxx
Maire
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

Hi all,
Just checking in. I'm on day 10 now. So far is been ok. It's the mental torture that's getting to me.
Just keep worrying about catching something. Next time i visit the hospital I'm going to have a chat about this as I feel it's interfering with the way I live my life and I'm not sure if I've got things into perspective.
Otherwise I've not had any major side effects. Nauseau for first 5 days and then that goes away and just have lots of wooshy head moments interspersed with feeling ok. Am cocooning myself away a wee bit which is prob not a great idea. Trying to get out for a daily walk just to get a sense of achievement.
No hair loss yet but am getting plooks for the first time since I was an adolescent.
If it's like this all the way through it'll be fine. It is def. not as bad as I feared.

shellebelle
Member

Re: Starting Chemo in December.

Ok, getting sweaty palms and palpatations now - first cycle of chemo Monday. Had visit to the chemo clinic at local hospital yesterday and bloods taken. It's just a day clinic at the moment so any out of hours emergency treatment/contact will have to be over at Leeds, St James.
Is anyone else having their bloods done on a Friday with chemo given on a Monday? Seems odd that there's the 2 day gap inbetween as I thought most had bloods day before/same day as chemo given.
Fingers crossed all will go to plan and SE's won' be horrendous - been great to read up on other's experiences and tips on here.
Wishing everyone an enjoyable weekend xx