72K members
1.2M posts
cancel
Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 

75 year old mum on chemo - nadir??

12 REPLIES 12
Guest user
Not applicable

Re: 75 year old mum on chemo - nadir??

Morning Maryland - hope sunny where you are, lovely down here; definite walk with mum in order later...
Diary - VERY good idea; I've been noting down anything useful for nurses to know, but a diary for mum would make a lot of sense, especially as she's used to keeping a sort of day book anyway. She can put in some of the borderline bad-taste cartoons I've done for her (makes us laugh, that's the main thing - don't think there's anything worse than people whispering, treading on eggshells round this kind of stuff; plus as soon as you can laugh at something scary, I think it shifts the balance of power in your favour!).
My lovely sister-in-law is dropping by for tea and gossip later, which will please mum no end. So important for her to be in contact with friends and other family - as supportive as I hope I'm being, there's bound to be times when she fancies throwing blunt objects at me, so healthy for both of us to have a break.
And yes, so true - it is vital that children do not lose sight of the fact that, treatment regardless, our parents are still the same infuriating, incomprehensible, fabulous old farts they've always been.
Best,
C
Maryland
Member

Re: 75 year old mum on chemo - nadir??

You're welcome Charlz.....hope your Mum is coping OK? One of the most helpful pieces of advice I was given on this forum was to keep a chemo diary. I used it to record what medication I needed to take (as I kept forgetting!!), temperature and side effects...that helped me to know what to expect and self-manage as chemo progressed. I also recorded what food/drink I had....what tasted foul and what tasted delicious(ish)!! I noted down the 'nadir' days so I knew when to be ultra-careful. On the positive side, I noted down the days I felt 'great' and used lots of smiley faces. I also planned little 'treats' for myself...sometimes very simple like a walk, buy a bunch of flowers or varnish my nails...actually writing these down gave me something to look forward to. A diary made me feel much more in control, and enabled me to focus day to day, rather than too much thinking about the future. Your Mum is very fortunate to have such a caring daughter....my Mum, Dad, husband, son and daughter were amazing. At times it's easy to forget how hard it is for those closest to us, but how much harder treatment would be without their love and support. I am now 3 months post chemo and 1 month post radiotherapy and my son paid me the best compliment this evening 'Mum, you're still weird and as intolerant as you always were.....you haven't changed at all'....music to my ears!!! Virtual hug to you both xx

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: 75 year old mum on chemo - nadir??

Thanks dancing girl - yeah, I'd noticed Emend cropping up in a few threads... Will ask nurse. Plus they said they may be able to administer a longer-lasting anti-sick drug during treatment next time - we shall see! Does sound preferable to having to think about taking pills during those first nasty 48 hours.
Hope you have a good day.
C
dancing_girl
Member

Re: 75 year old mum on chemo - nadir??

Hi Charlz,
Sorry to hear your mum is having problems with sickness. I was fairly fortunate and was only sick once but felt nauseous and not like eating for a few days each time. People on the chemo thread I was on were recommending Emend (expensive) if the cheaper anti-sickness meds don't work. You need to contact the chemo unit and tell them what is happening - they should be able to help with something now and prevent things getting so bad for future chemos.
Hope you manage to get things better from your mum.

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: 75 year old mum on chemo - nadir??

Hi Maryland
Voice of reason! These are all things I really need to hear right now, as am such a rookie with all this... It's all too easy to get into a paranoid/fatalistic frame of mind (e.g. last night: 'Aagh! Fourth day post-chemo, and Mum's being sick again! This must be how it's going to be - FOR EVER! That's it! No more Happy Mum, the future is but a vale of tears, retching, and small dry oat biscuits...' etc etc.)
But of course, that is not necessarily a 100% balanced view of things.
One day at a time, taking into account all this sensible advice, and hopefully we'll stay on top of it all.
You're right about the helplines - we've got some lovely chemo nurses, so will not hesitate to ring them if at all edgy.
Thanks Maryland, and have a great day.
C
Maryland
Member

Re: 75 year old mum on chemo - nadir??

Hi Charlz....I am younger than your Mum with no grandchildren, but I did work throughout chemo (FEC and TAX) except on the 'nadir' days. I work in a special school, and although not directly with the children, I do encounter lots of people over a day! RevCat and megsmum are spot on....using lots of anti bac, avoiding anyone with an obvious cold or other known infection, taking temp regularly and being really alert to flu-like symptoms i.e. achey, shivery etc., plus your own sensible approach to hygiene. I was hospitalised after TAX1 with an undiagnosed infection (probaby related to mouth infection masked by oral thrush!) and the ward Onc said that I was more at risk to myself than from other people so I really tried to carry on life as 'normally' as possible! There are also lots of ladies on the forum who have small children that go to nursery/school who may have some good advice. Best advice is 'if in doubt' contact your Mum's chemo unit or whatever 24 hour helpline given, as I found they were always willing to answer questions (even daft ones!), offer reassurance, advice, guidance whatever time of day (or night). Hope that helps....you both take care xo

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: 75 year old mum on chemo - nadir??

Megsmum, what a nightmare! I do hope all is well now, and you're getting some well-deserved r&r after that...
Thanks for the benefit of your experience. Got good digital thermometer and into habit of checking temp regularly, so hopefully should spot if anything amiss. The challenge will be getting mum to speak up quickly if she's not feeling so good - she hates to 'worry/bother' people if she can help it... soon snap her out of that habit!
Take care of yourself, and thanks again.
C
megsmum
Member

Re: 75 year old mum on chemo - nadir??

Hi hope your mum is ok she is lucky to have you, i finished chemo in june and had the bad luck to be admitted to hospital 3 times with sepsis 😞 even after totally isolating myself from the outside world, never any particular bugs identified !. Best advice i can give after general good hand hygene etc is keep a check on her temp and if any shivery episodes ring chemo unit/ward for advice.
Tell your mam good luck x

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: 75 year old mum on chemo - nadir??

Thanks so much for your reply, RevCat.
Good thinking about anti-bac protocol for any visiting friends/family - think an email is in order!
And yes, I think what you say about keeping different possible infection risks in perspective (non-snotty grandkids v. train full of coughing commuters) makes a lot of sense.
Scandinavian-style sneezing (possible future Olympic sport?) = a revelation! Definitely going to adopt that approach from now on, if only for the novelty appeal.
Anyway, one of mum's friends has just made her a fruitcake (delicious - recipe from Great British Bake-Off, if you're interested), and I've just bought her some fab earrings, so that's something to be cheerful about.
Thanks again for your tips - feel somewhat more calm and collected!
Best, C
RevCat
Member

Re: 75 year old mum on chemo - nadir??

Hi Charlz,

So sorry to read about your mother, but she is fortunate to have you supporting her and being so sensibly careful.

I am a lot younger than your Mum, but my job is very 'people' based, so maybe some of what I was told/did would help.

Anyone with a cold or other infection, or D&V, needs to stay away while they are infectious/D&V, but there are plenty of simple 'protocols' that will help get around small people carrying bugs. I kept small bottles of anti-bac gel lying around my house, and asked people to use them - no one objected. I also kept one with me at all times, so that, for example, in shops or public loos I could quickly and discretely clean my hands or surfaces. Anti-bac surface wipes are useful too.

Using tissue is better than hankies (standard 'coughs and sneezes' advice) and the 'Scandinavian' approach to covering the mouth/nose can be helpful.... cough/sneeze into your elbow!! Keeps hands clean.

To be honest, I think seeing the children will do far more good than over zealous hygiene. I worked all through my chemo which was Sep - Dec two years ago and stayed infection free until the last one, when I caught a nasty bug from people sniffing and coughing on a train... half a day at A&E is best avoided. I think hot, crowded, public places are way more risky than home with grandchildren.

Hope all goes well with the chemo and your mum continues to enjoy her grandchildren.
Guest user
Not applicable

Re: 75 year old mum on chemo - nadir??

Thanks, June - good to know!

C

June_BCC
Member

Re: 75 year old mum on chemo - nadir??

Hello Charlz


Welcome to the forums. I'm sorry to hear of your mum’s diagnosis, this must be a very difficult time for both of you.


As well as the support you and your mum will receive on the forums you might find it helpful to talk things through with one of the helpline staff, they are there to offer emotional support as well as provide information. The free phone number is 0808 800 6000 and lines are open 9-5 Monday to Friday and 10-2 Saturday.


Best wishes


June, moderator

Guest user
Not applicable

75 year old mum on chemo - nadir??

Hello all
Bit new to this, so sorry if posting in wrong bit, or whatever!
My mum, who's 75 (but biologically 65, according to docs!) just had her first round of AC chemo post surgery for non-invasive breast cancer (had mastectomy in June), and is bearing up well, bless her. Some nasty nausea day and night for first couple of days, but hopefully we can learn from it and look at some alternative anti-sicks to help next time.
The thing that's preying on my mind a bit is the whole 'nadir/low resistance' side of things... she's in good shape for her age, but hey - she's still 75! I'm trying to stay this side of paranoid, just being sensible re day-to-day hygiene, food preparation, watch out for snotty, coughing people etc... and trying to stay well myself, or fat lot of help I am!
She has two little grandchildren (my brother's kids), both at nursery, and obviously she loves to see them. I'm aware how at that age kids can be total bug-magnets, but at the same time I don't want to get things out of proportion. Plus the chemo nurses advised that it's as much internal bugs within yourself that can be problematic, as ones coming from outside...
Does anyone have any nadir experience they can share, particularly from the more mature ladies? Any experience of infection during chemo, tips or advice?
I want mum to lead as normal life as possible, but equally the last thing I want to do is expose her to any unnecessary risk! Kind of hard to find the middle path between relaxed and paranoid...
Any advice gratefully received! Hope everyone's doing ok, and enjoying the start of autumn. Lovely time of year.
Thanks
Charlz