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Chemo at home or hospital?

9 REPLIES 9
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Re: Chemo at home or hospital?

Hi,

Jumping in here quite a long time after the last post, but am coming to end of chemo cycles and have to face choise of having herceptin at home (Using healthcare at home) or continuing to go to hospital. Basically comes down to financial consideration. Does anyone have any advice or comments they would make of this service? I have kids and wondered what the storage requirements were? What are their contact details like for any concerns afterwards? Hope that you ladies are able to take the time to answer these questions.

Thanks,

Snoogle
x

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Re: Chemo at home or hospital?

Thanks "M" I think you've persuaded me. I have my appt to discuss treatment tomorrow so I'll be a little clearer on which route to go down. Hope you are doing okay. Ellie x

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Re: Chemo at home or hospital?

Hi Ellie, sorry forgot to say that my nurse always brought with her the oxygen / emergency stuff and I did ask her what would happen if I did react. She said that as she was sitting with me on a one to one basis, she could see immediately if things went wrong and had everything within arms reach to deal with it. As I said, I would have been alot more stressed with the drive, parking, waiting etc. I know how it felt when I had to go every day to Colchester for radiotherapy and I just thought thank god I didn't have to do this for chemo!

Good Luck

M

ps my husband has just walked in and read this, I won't write exactly what he said but he c ommented that it made the whole situation alot more bearable and if I had to go to hospital we would have been alot more stressed

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Re: Chemo at home or hospital?

Hi thanks to you all - this is really helpful. I think I might be swaying towards treatment at home - my two boys would be at school and should they by chance be at home, then we've been open and honest about everything and they take an interest in what's happening (without forcing it down their throats), so they understand. They're coming up for 11 and 15 and have been brilliant about the whole thing so far. The only unnerving side is that my aunt sadly lost her battle 4 years ago and they were very close to her. But the signs are positive for me so far so we're very optimistic and staying very strong - how can we not be when there are so many people rooting for us?! (And don't you find out at times like this how many truly wonderful people are out there?).
Take care, Ellie xx

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Re: Chemo at home or hospital?

Hi Ellie
Quite a tricky choice - like the other ladies have said rather depends on whether you are a 'private' sort of person or like the idea of getting help/support from others while undergoing treatment
i had my chemo in the main hospitalfor this area (wasn't offered a choice) but then the heceptin administered at home by 'Healthcare at home'. Personally I would have chosen to have the chemo in hospital - just in case anything went wrong they have all the stuff on hand to help you. However having the heceptin administered at home was fine - the healthcare at home nurses were great, it was good not to have to spend so much travelling time to/from hospital and i did feel more relaxed having the treatment at home. Do you have someone to drive you to hospital/ You may need someone to bring you home afterwards - i wouldn't have felt up to driving, but everyomne is different.
Hope it all goes Ok
cheers
Caroline

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Re: Chemo at home or hospital?

Hi, I had all my chemos at home thro Healthcare at Home (4xEC, 4xTaxotere) and I can't speak highly enough about it! Yes there is the down side of not meeting people but my nurse was wonderful. She would call round the day or two before to take my bloods and then would turn up at about 10ish on the day, wire me up and then sit there chatting to me all the way through. I would then be done by lunchtime and could just potter around at home. I found that it made the chemo experience more bearable because it sort of fitted in with home, I wasn't having to spend all my time driving to hospital and your nurse is totally committed to you throughout. She would then phone me in the evening and if I had any problems there was a 24hr nurse on call. As I said, yes it was a bit isolating but she put me in touch with some other women who had had treatment a couple of years previously. I also used the cold cap which I had to store in the freezer and she would change during the treatment. The only thing I would say is that I don't have children (I was 33) so I can't speak of any experience with that.

Good Luck with whatever decision you make but I would not have had it any other way.

Mx

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Re: Chemo at home or hospital?

So much depends on the hospital where you are treated- and the sort of person you are.
I had all my treatment in hospital but in addition to the 20 mile journey each way, I found the physical conditions, total lack of privacy, indefinite waiting time etc etc made the whole grotty experience worse than it needed to be.

In district hospitals- and some of the larger ones too- there IS privacy and TLC for the patients - but where I was treated they were seeing over 60 patients a day and it was all much too much like a production line. I went so far as to enquire about having private treatment but the cost was prohibitive without medical insurance so I stuck it out- but I really didn't like it. I would certainly have preferred to have been treated at home.

Maybe I'm in a minority but my personal space is important to me - and I'm really not a fan of being in enforced close proximity to so many other sick people..

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Re: Chemo at home or hospital?

I had all my chemo in hospital, but a 50 mile round trip with no car was tough as I needed to rely on hospital transport.

I had the last ten of my herceptin at home for this reason, and it's been fine, especially as I had a Hickman line. My last treatment is Thursday, but line came out this week due to infection, so I might feel differently if she struggles with access.

Rebecca

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Re: Chemo at home or hospital?

I had 4 chemos at my local hospital Feb 06 then got transferred to the big county hospital 26 miles away for another 4 chemos + 18 herceptin. The drive was a pain initially as I was having onc appt, taxotere + herceptin +using cold cap all on the same day my mum would drop me off for around 9.30 and my husband would pick me up abount 5.30pm. Once herceptin only I could easily drive myself in between school drop off and pick up. About halfway thru the herceptin my Onc told me she would look into home treatment but I declined, I had problems with my veins and quite a number of occassion more than 1 nurse would take a turn, also I quite liked keeping my home life seperate and didn't want the kids having it their face. Once into the later half of herceptin it was approved by NICE and there was 3 of us all having it around the same time with the same nurse, it was actually quite nice to have a bit of company.

Debs

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Chemo at home or hospital?

Hi there - I'm currently 5 days post lumpectomy and sentinel node biopsy and feeling okay so far. I'm very fortunate in that my job gives me private healthcare. I have the option of receiving chemo at home privately, or travelling 20 miles or so to the nearest hospital to have chemo. Does anyone out there have any experience of home treatment or advice to offer? My breast nurse says that it might be best to choose hospital for treatment as "it gets you out and you meet people, plus you might want to retreat to home as your sanctuary". I can see this makes absolute perfect sense but the downside for me would be the practical side of getting to hospital. I don't know if I'll be able to drive myself there or whether I'd need to rely on someone else to take me? Treatment plan to be discussed this Wednesday so any advice would be welcome. Thanks.