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Advice sought on watching temperature during chemo

14 REPLIES 14
Ruth13
Member

Re: Advice sought on watching temperature during chemo

Historygirl,

Don't worry about low readings, it is really rare for people to get hypothermic. ( Need to be stuck outside in cold for a few hours) 36.0 etc is quite normal.

Just take your temperature with a good thermometer, ear thermometers are best. You only need to get concerned if temp >37.5 on 2 occassions one hour apart, or if ever >38.0.

Fiona x

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: Advice sought on watching temperature during chemo

Hello History Girl

At the start of treatment, my ONC told me to only take my temperature if I felt 'warm'....and that's what I did. Worked for me too 🙂

Good luck and may all your SE's be small ones!

Hugz

Sharon x

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: Advice sought on watching temperature during chemo

Hi HG

At the start of my chemo I used to take my temp every day. In the end I stopped and only took it when I didn't feel well. It worked for me - and stopped me turning into a hypocondriac too 🙂

Hope you're ok. Rest as much as you can and don't overdo things - a toptip I learnt the hard way!

All the very best

Deb x

DJ007
Member

Re: Advice sought on watching temperature during chemo

That's good HG. That should be the worst of it on EC. Hoping that the others will be as good - unfortunately the effects, especially the tiredness, do tend to build as you go through.

Take care - just think of it zapping the nasties.
Dx

Historygirl
Member

Re: Advice sought on watching temperature during chemo

Thanks all for your advice - it's being taken on board!

DJ007 - Thanks for asking about chemo. Yep, it was first one on Monday. So far (she said, scared of tempting fate) the SEs have been fairly minimial - mainly tiredness/wearieness combined with difficulty sleeping. Thankfully no major bouts of nausea though.

Dx

janipi
Member

Re: Advice sought on watching temperature during chemo

The most accurate digital one I had was from Poundland! I was neutropenic 4 times out of my 6 chemos. It was annoying as I didn't feel particularly ill although with chemo SE's it's hard to tell. Being neutropenic meant having IV anti biotics which really upset my tummy. I don't remember when I last took my temp pre BC if ever! I turned into a temperature watcher through chemo. Mine always happened day 4 or 5. Funnily enough I had freezing hands and feet which always alerted me that my temperature was on the rise. After the first panic, I got used to the routine. I was assured that as soon as IV anti bi's were on board I was perfectly safe and usually stayed in hospital 48 hours or so. I sychronised thermometers with the hosptial and the Poundland one was spot on. I love a bargain. Going through chemo you are allowed to be as neurotic as you like. I used to ring up all the time. On first name terms with the triage nurses. I'm sure that they were saying under their breath "Not her again.":) x

Mazzalou
Member

Re: Advice sought on watching temperature during chemo

Hi

Actually my chemo nurse advised me to buy an ear thermometer as they are more accurate and reliable. I bought a Braun ear thermometer once I knew I was going to have chemo and started taking my temperature daily beforehand and charting it as I had no ideas what was 'normal' for me. Try and take your temperature at the same time every day as it really can vary during the course of a day. I started my chemo last June through to the end of September so I also noticed a difference on those few hot sunny days that are our summer!!

If you use an ear thermometer you must use the disposable protectors that come with it otherwise you get a 'low' reading message and you also have to make sure that you insert it in your ear properly to avoid an erroneous reading. Try and always use the same ear too.

My chemo unit wanted contacting if my temperature went above 38. Mine tended to be around 36.5 but it did venture over 37 on a number of ocassions, but these tended to be when it was quite warm outside too.

I must admit though that having to take your temperature everyday does tend to turn you into a bit of a hypochondriac!

DJ007
Member

Re: Advice sought on watching temperature during chemo

Forgot to ask!.... How are you doing after your first chemo? Hope the SEs aren't too bad.
Dx

DJ007
Member

Re: Advice sought on watching temperature during chemo

Hi

My temp generally varied between 36.2 and 36.8 - I once got a reading of 37.1 and kept a close eye on it for a few hours (it went down!). If I ever felt a bit rubbish, I also took my temp regularly to spot any changes.

Dx

elinda45
Member

Re: Advice sought on watching temperature during chemo

Hi there

agree with REvcat - my core temperature is never above 36.4 and can be lower in the mornings. I'm probably stating the obvious so forgive me but don't have cold or hot drink/food for a good while prior to taking your temperature if taking it orally. Also if you're taking anything like paracetamol ensure you take your temperature right before each dose not after.
Body temp can vary a bit during the day.

Also to say, I have had neutropenic sepsis and you do feel incredibly unwell when you have it. In fact I started shivering, couldn't eat and started feeling ill before it even showed up as a temperature and then boy did it shoot up (over 38.5)

Interestingly when I was taxotere I always got a temperature at 5pm when it started going above 37.5 so it's probably worth checking in the morning and afternoon/evening but at any time that you feel particularly poorly.

take care, elinda x

ChoccieMuffin
Member

Re: Advice sought on watching temperature during chemo

And don't just leave it if you feel unwell WITHOUT a temp. If you feel ill, contact your chemo unit and get their advice. don't feel bad for bothering them if it turns out to be nothing either, it's their job to keep an eye on you and address your concerns and they really won't mind one little bit. Much better to see you when it's nothing to worry about than NOT seeing you when it is.

Neutropenia is pretty rare, but it IS serious when it happens.

CM
x

RevCat
Member

Re: Advice sought on watching temperature during chemo

Yep, I reckon you might be offically cool!

Neurotic nelly or normal woman who's had her world turned upside down and inside out? I suspect the latter.

Historygirl
Member

Re: Advice sought on watching temperature during chemo

Hi RevCat

Lower core temperature? Why didn't I think of that - does that make me offically 'cool' 🐵

That's a brill idea about getting therms checked out at next appt - will do that.

Thanks for reassurance (not remotely stupid or arrogant). I can be a right neurotic nelly at times!

Thanks
D x

RevCat
Member

Re: Advice sought on watching temperature during chemo

Hi History girl,
At risk of sounding either stupid or arrogant, how do you know that you thermometers read low? Have you been able to calibrate them against one you know is correct? Or do you, like me, have a naturally lower core temperature than some other people?

The key thing is that you keep an eye on your temp, and get it formally checked if it above 37.5 or 38.0 as per instructions. If you are anxious that your theometers are under-recording, why not take them along to your next appointment, explain the concern and ask they hospital to to t ake your temp with one of theirs, then yours and compare (some slight difference is not going to matter).

I used a digital ear thermometer (expensive) and took my temp morning and evening (now that's neurotic!) every day through chemo and recorded the results. I soon learned that it varied from day to day and what was normal for me - plus I had evidence, had I needed it, to support my concenrs over raised temp.

If it helps, after my final chemo I got an infection that sent my temp over 38 (peaked at 38.4 according to hospital); I felt rubbish, so I knew something was wrong.

Historygirl
Member

Advice sought on watching temperature during chemo

Hi All

Brace yourself for a possibly neurotic post here.

I have (like everyone else I expect) been told to keep an eye on my temperature whilst on chemo. My problem is my bl**dy useless digital thermometers (or it could be me). I have two thermometers one a couple of years old and one brand new. They both tend to read 'low'. That is if your temperature is supposed to be 37 mine usually reads around 36 (or just below or above). I take my temperature orally and I do keep my mouth shut honestly! Both thermometers give pretty much the same reading.

Now the Chemo Unit told me to ring in if my temp went to 37.5 or above for over one hour. Do you think, bearing in mind the above, I should be contacting them if the thermometers I use go to 36.5 or above - or am I being a bit bonkers?

Has anyone else had problems with using thermometers bought off the shelf?

Thanks

D x