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First FEC not great.......any tips???

33 REPLIES 33
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Re: First FEC not great.......any tips???

Hi, sorry you felt sick on your first FEC. I also had my first FEC 12days ago & l was sick 9 times! I had cyclizine injection administered by out of hours emergency doctor which had an immediate effect . It also makes you sleepy which really helps too. I also got domperidone supposidories and used ondansetron. My GP was reluctant to prescribe me iv cyclazine & he prescribed me cyclazine tablets instead. These all helped with the sickness but the feeling of nausea lasted for nearly 10 days getting better each day. The first few days I could only eat little and only cucumber and grapes and then after only simple foods. I also noticed smell making things very bad. I think i have a hypersensitive nose! Lol:) Luckily, my husband had bought me an air purifier which arrived at day 2 post fec. It's a real live saver if ur sensitive with smell like me!:) eating little and frequently and sipping water frequently helps. For me it was after day 10 that I was completely back to normal . Oh! I really didn't like the side effects of anti-emetics so I stopped using them after day 3 & beared the nausea & managed it by eating little frequently. I started doing a light work-out every morning once I was better & I think that also helped. Prior to that frequent walks to the park for fresh air was very useful.

I hope your feeling much better now

Nas

finty
Member

Re: First FEC not great.......any tips???

Hi Tracey - would suggest if you are constipated you take something a lot stronger than Weetabix, and soon! It can be a real beast on FEC, many of us had the sugary syrup (Movicol??) - but don't let it go any longer.

finty xx

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Re: First FEC not great.......any tips???

Hi Tracy,
I too had first FEC few weeks ago and i was'nt sick although i did feel a bit nauseous for some time after.I think it helped drinking loads of water day before ,during and day after chemo.I know sickness is worst of side affects i feel for you

bluebird 16 x

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Re: First FEC not great.......any tips???

Hi Tracey I was really sick on fec first day 13 times had to go back up unit for saline drip anti sickness jab tablets never worked I was just as bad on second does 3 does they reduced by the time they sorted it was fin my face was red to it's the tabs just go with it it will soon pass take care laura

ChoccieMuffin
Member

Re: First FEC not great.......any tips???

Same as Lisa x, Emend makes it doable, and I would not have wanted to have No.2 if it was going to be as bad as No1.

Lisa_x
Member

Re: First FEC not great.......any tips???

Hi Tracy,

Sorry to hear you've had such a rotten time with your first FEC. My first one was rubbish too and I was sick as a dog! I ended up in A&E having various anti sickness drugs IV. I was dehydrated and needed IV fluids too. I got emend for the next FECs and I can honestly say I haven't had any sickness at all, not even a bit of nausea. It's worked really well for me. I'm sure you won't have a problem getting emend if they know how you've suffered. I have still taken steroids and ondansetron but haven't needed to use domperidone.

Really pleased to see that you are feeling a bit better today.

Take care, lots of hugs xxxxx

Lisa

miniminx
Member

Re: First FEC not great.......any tips???

Hello All

Yes a better day again today, still bright red and cheeks burning but that I can live with. Am managing to eat little and often as suggested and drinking fizzy water as well. Am sooo constipated but hope that the weetabix I had this morning might help that or its prunes for me later!

I have decided I am going to try it all as you suggested CM and if it takes grovelling crying or whatever I am determined to get the Emend if I possibly can. I really cannot face this kind of sickness again and it is really putting me off continuing so that would not be an exaggeration.

Tracy xxx

Petal5
Member

Re: First FEC not great.......any tips???

Hi. I had 6 FEC last year. I was sick on the first night after my first dose but managed to get it back in control with domperidone suppositories (as I couldn't keep anything down the rest of the meds were useless). Saw the onc before dose two who stressed about keeping to the exact timings of all the anti sickness meds even before feeling sick etc. I did all that but they obviously didn't do the trick because I was in a really bad way on the third night after FEC 2. Had emergency doctor out in the middle of the night as I was being sick every quarter of an hour and he took five hours to arrive! He gave me a cyclizine injection which sorted me out. It seems that once you start being sick it is very difficult to get it back under control.
Before FEC 3 I saw onc again and I did lay it on with a trowel. Said I couldn't consider going through that again and I wanted a change of meds and said about all the good reports I had heard about Emend. My unit hadn't used it before but after a discussion between my onc and the head onc it got the go ahead.The next four were very different. No actual sickness, yes I felt nauseaus but so much better.
I hope you are able to get some joy from your unit. There are meds out ther that can help you through this.
Love Pam x

ChoccieMuffin
Member

Re: First FEC not great.......any tips???

Write it all down now, so that you have something to refer to when you have your pre-chemo.

Make a note of the things you want to stress at the pre-chemo too, and ask specific questions when they get the tray of drugs out - What's that one? What's the dosage? What's it for?

The nausea and vomitting is just so horrible I hope they can sort out your meds for No. 2.

Lemongrove
Member

Re: First FEC not great.......any tips???

Hi Miniminx, hope you're feeling better today. If I were you, just before they start the next infusion, I would check that they have given you your anti-emetics? I think if you have those prior to the infusion, and then take your anti-emetics, as prescribed you should be OK (doubt you'll feel like a five course meal, but at least you won't actually throw-up ). If you do feel sick Cyclizine is good, but try not to mix it with other anti-emetics.
LG

miniminx
Member

Re: First FEC not great.......any tips???

Just wanted to thank you all so much for your tips and ideas.

In response I am not aware thinking about it that any anti-sickness drug was given prior to the chemo drugs. I had a seline drip to start with then she injected the E bit first then another one in an injection into canula and then the last one is in a bag and that went through then a small amount of seline again to flush it through. Whilst I do not want to appear harsh I think because they were running behind and it was getting near to dinner time (its 12.30pm and I was out at 12.15pm as she told me not to bother ticking for a meal as I would not be around) she just wanted to get me sorted and finished. That said she was a lovely nurse but she was trying to deal with 4 patients in my bay and time was of the essence!

I feel much better today and have managed to eat little and often as recommended so think the sickness is under control. Yes Lemongrove I had hoped that getting the anti-sickness meds in as they told me to do yesterday was going to do the job and then ongoing to keep it under raps but unfortunately it came back immediately so there was little else I could do. Did not want to take more of the steroids or metaclopromide incase I did not have enough and I was sick so many times I would not have won the battle. Anyway all meds stayed in today so hopefully the worse is over.

Anyway back off to bed now as I am tired, just wanted to come in and say hello.

Thanks again ladies, hope to speak to you all tomorrow.

Lots of love
Tracy xxxxx

Guest user
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Re: First FEC not great.......any tips???

i must be unusual cos i have been really well on fec- sorry to rub it in- no sickness at all, very tired for first few days after chemo then feel absolutely fine and able to live life as normal, have also lost taste for coffee tho, my fave drink. sorry if i sound too cheerful when you're all feeling poorly hope it passes sue xx

Lavenderlassie
Member

Re: First FEC not great.......any tips???

Dear Tracey,
I do hope you are feeling better, if not TELL the chemo unit NOW! This is how chemo used to be and was expected to be, but now there are more options, they really do not expect you to grin and bear this amount of sickness. I had Aloxi (Palonosetron so related to Odansetron mentioned above) IV before FEC and steroids, and rarely had to take anything else as back up. Never threw up. The side effects of Aloxi include marked constipation so I took a disgusting tasting drink to deal with that, but that was bearable compared to being sick.
I also drank fluid +++ before chemo (partly to help keep the veins plumped up)so started off well hydrated.
There are enough other ways of feeling fed up while on chemo without this. Little drink of lemon and ginger with honey, honey?

J01
Member

Re: First FEC not great.......any tips???

Tracey Hun, so sorry you had a bad start on FEC, hang on to the thought that theres omly one way to go???? I have noticed that some seem to have a bad start, then SE's easier( if there is such a thing!!!) and yet others a gradual decline with each one you have to believe that you will not be so bad next time. I am now day 10 ( FEC 1) and the fog is starting to lift, mind you the nose is starting to run...keep sneezing like hayfever, which I don't suffer from??? I don't have a temp so must be SE? anyway post when you fell up to it and let us know how it's going XX Jeanette

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Re: First FEC not great.......any tips???

carnt add to wot the others have said cos i aint been there but i want to send you a big cyber hug and lots of well whishes that you feel better soon hang in there hun
maz xx

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Re: First FEC not great.......any tips???

Tracey

Sorry to hear you have had a rough time. I was similar to you. I started throwing up about 6 hours after the first FEC. My husband took me to out of hours docs and was given an anti-sickness jab, but that didn't work. I was sick all night. The next day we called the GP, who gave me another jab. Again this didn't work, so after many phone calls from my daughter and GP I was taken to A & E and admitted to a ward on oncology. I was on a drip for 24hrs.

After FEC 2 I was sick again, but not as bad. And again for FEC 3. Each time my onc reviewed my anti-sickness tablets. With FEC 3 onwards I was given an injection of andonsatron before the chemo was administered, and this seemed to help.

For FEC 4 I was given Emend and I wasn't sick again. However this did knock me out completely for about a week, though that could have been the build up of drugs.

All I could eat in the first week (in fact for most of the time) was mashed potato and I drank a lot of apple juice.

Caroline

AvenueSue_
Member

Re: First FEC not great.......any tips???

Hi Tracy,
I just wanted to say I sympathise. I found, like Lemongrove, keeping on top on the anti sickness meds, painkillers etc and taking it easy helped. I found, on FEC, I was in bed an hour after getting home and would sleep round til morning. I did find FEC2 and 3 a bit easier. My father in law bought me some travel sickness bands as well and these seemed to help. Drink plenty and rest as much as you can.
I hope you are feeling better soon.
Sue

GIJaneH
Member

Re: First FEC not great.......any tips???

I was exactly the same after my first FEC. Can only say it improved! Awful at the time though. A friend who's a nurse asked all her patients who'd had chemo what helped when the mouth tastes foul, and top came lemon lucozade. Not available in all supermarkets, but my OH went and got some, and it's good for me. Doesn't stop the sickness (ginger beer helped, some recoommend slices of root ginger steeped in boiling water with some honey), but the lemon luc does hit the spot for the foul mouth after the sickness..

Mezzomamma
Member

Re: First FEC not great.......any tips???

Ginger helps a lot of people, drinking extra the day before, don't wait to feel sick before taking meds. On the other hand I mostly had morning chemo finishing around lunchtime and then the first scheduled tablet was 12 hours later. But the first chemo nurse said I could take 2 others sooner if needed--I was lucky and didn't. I didn't get the rush some do, so I rested when I got home. My first two were afternoon, finishing at tea time, so I went to bed not long after supper and had first meds in the morning.

I got intravenous anti-sickness before the chemo went in, and some people start taking theirs the day before, I think. The nurses always let the saline solution run a bit after the chemo, as well, leaving me desperate for the loo!

Cheryl

Lemongrove
Member

Re: First FEC not great.......any tips???

You could also ask about cyclizine which is a very good anti-emetic. I was told it was the most expensive (about £7.50 per tablet they said), and it did do the trick.
By the way, did they give you anti-sickness stuff before giving you the chemo. I just wonder because it seems very early for the sickness to kick in.

pinkrose
Member

Re: First FEC not great.......any tips???

Hi

I too was just like you with FEC. Nothing I tried (ginger, taking meds before I felt sick etc) made me feel any better and I was sick, sick, sick.

Agree with chocciemuffin, beg for EMEND. I found out about Emend on this website (noone mentioned it at the hospital) and the chemo nurse was very reluctant to give it to me (in fact she said I couldn't have it at first until I cried and she rang me when I got home to say she had thought about it and felt really sorry for me and had got Emend signed off by the oncologist!)

It is worth insisting on it as it did stop the sickness (not the nausea I'm afraid) but it made FEC managable for me. On a good note - week 2 and 3 I felt fine.

Good luck!

Best wishes

Rachelx

ChoccieMuffin
Member

Re: First FEC not great.......any tips???

Emend. Beg, plead, cry, lay it on with a trowel. It might be expensive but the cost of you having to call out various medics to administer drugs must surely be more expensive than giving something to control the nausea?

Lemongrove
Member

Re: First FEC not great.......any tips???

I also felt quite sick during FEC, and lost 12 lbs in weight. I found that it was better to take the anti-sickness in a preventive way, rather than waiting till I actually felt sick.

finty
Member

Re: First FEC not great.......any tips???

Amber yes, ginger beer is excellent for nausea - I generally find when the kid are sick slightly flat fizzy drinks are best.

finty
Member

Re: First FEC not great.......any tips???

Tracey it might just be the first one - I was very sick for one night after the first FEC, but never again after that. I gather this is quite common, so I hope it will be the case for you too. Hope you feel better today. finty x

amber32002
Member

Re: First FEC not great.......any tips???

There's some good studies showing that you can halve the chances of bad sickness by taking 1000mg of ginger for a few days before chemo. Can get it from healthfood shops. I'm doing so and it's worked well for me so far (though I'm only one person so that's no proof one way or the other!) but worth a thought. And I use those sea bands wrist strap things you can get from chemists too, which they also reckon helps a bit. Plus lots of sipping of ginger beer seems to help too.

Guest user
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Re: First FEC not great.......any tips???

Hi Tracey

So sorry you have had a bad time on your first FEC. I had my first FEC on 15 April and thank god i had the anti sickness drug emend. I really think this saved me from terrible sickness even though i still had horrendous nausea for about 9 days but no actual vomitting. I too had the really fetching red face look but that went as soon as i finished the steroids.
Hang on in there and look after yourself
Lv Melx

elinda45
Member

Re: First FEC not great.......any tips???

How I sympathise!

I was just like you I'm afraid. It started exactly 4 hours after the FEC and I had two treatments like that. My GP administered injection and said if I was sick again I'd have to go into hospital - really horrible.

My face went very red and hot after each FEC too. Not much advice except a nice cool flannel.

I finally got some decent anti sickness meds for the 3rd and 4th FEC. I would strongly suggest that you ring the chemo team asap and tell them what's happened. That way you can ensure you get better meds next time. My trust wouldn't fork out for Emend which I gather is the best. I had something called levomepromazine (also called nozinan) which knocked me out but at least I wasn't sick. I also had domperidone in suppository form.

After about day 2 I went onto oral domperidone which I had before meals so I could try and eat something. I had nausea for all but a couple of days through the cycle but the domperidone did really help.

The other thing that helped was when the chemo nurses gave me an extra bag of fluid after administering the chemo. That way I wasn't so dehydrated.

I couldn't drink coffee or tea during FEC but really craved sparkling water for some reason.

I managed to get through 4 X FEC like that so hang in there! I hope things improve quickly for you. Be clear with the team about how sick you were and that you need more anti sickness meds.
Elinda x

Mezzomamma
Member

Re: First FEC not great.......any tips???

So sorry, Tracy--yes, make a fuss until you get more suitable anti-sickness, which often seems to be emend. Tiny meals, small snacks in between and sip, sip, sip. Sorry about the coffee, but you may be ok in a day or so. I was sometimes better with a coffee/chocolate mix, which sat better and tasted better, sometimes had to stick with tea or water. I find things like nibbling grapes help to keep my blood sugar level, which seems to help nausea, though it won't do much for vomiting, of course.

Lots of us turn bright red at various stages of steroids, but mention it anyhow. (Shakiness and hyperactivity seem to be other common reactions, plus either not sleeping or crashing out.) I usually get my sense of taste back by the end of a treatment period, but it has got worse over the whole period. It may be partly sense of smell going. Use your mouthwash if you were given it; that seemed to help my sense of taste as well as keeping mouth well.

(I'm at the shaky hands and not sleeping at night stage, so this may not be very clear--sorry.)

Good luck

Cheryl

hope4444
Member

Re: First FEC not great.......any tips???

Hi Tracy,

Sorry to hear you have had such a bad time on FEC1.
I am now two weeks post FEC2 and am feeling back to normal.
Do try and get Emend if you can. I have been lucky enough to have it from the start and have not been sick at all although have had some nausea.
Try to catch up with your fluids. Drink little and often throughout the day. I know even water may taste foul but keep going!
I had the facial and neck flushing too but that only lasted for a couple of days.
If you are like me you will probably feel yucky physically and emotionally for up to a week and think that you will never feel better but it is amazing how the body gets back to normal.

Best wishes,
Kate x

janipi
Member

Re: First FEC not great.......any tips???

I was never sick on FEC but felt dreadful. I used to get home from hospital straight away as I felt instantly woozy. You don't have to put up with the sickness as there seems to be a wonderful (expensive) drug called emend. I've heard many a story how good it is so get on that phone to your unit and cry, beg, do what you have to so you don't feel like this again.Don't take no for an answer because we are worth every penny and need help! I went off favourite things too but by week 3 could drink tea, coffee etc again so hopefully your taste changes will be just temporary. Red cheeks are definitely steroids! I'm 2 days post TAX and my face is as bright pink as my teashirt today. OH says I have a healthy glow. Be really kind to yourself and look forward to the good days at the end of the cycle when you will feel normal again. x

Guest user
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Re: First FEC not great.......any tips???

hi Tracy, sorry to hear you have been suffering with sickness. I did as well after FEC1, I was sick every half an hour for 12 hours, I went to the drs the following day in the end for an antisickness injection which stopped me throwing up. I mentioned to my oncologist at the next visit and they did up my antisickness before my chemo and changed my tablets which helped but was sick a few times after FEC2 then none after FEC3. I would definately mention it to your onc when you next see him. With regards to your cheeks, could be the steroids,phone the number they give you for the chemo unit if you are unwell and keep taking your temperature, i have often phoned them to check. I felt awful after FEC1 and was so dreading the next one beacuse of the sickness but it wasnt as bad so make sure you get them to review your antisickness drugs. Ness xxx

cally
Member

Re: First FEC not great.......any tips???

Hi Tracy

I had FEC and like you I was sick..usually about 7ish on the first evening but after that I was fine. I tried various pills and potions but non eof them worked so I just accepted it.
Re the red cheeks..I was told that was due to the steriods. I found after a day or so it subsided.
Hang on in there...one day at a time

s xx

miniminx
Member

First FEC not great.......any tips???

Hello All

First FEC here's the story so far..........

All went fine yesterday, chemo was all through by 11.30am and after some paperwork and stuff was out by midday. Had a couple of things to do Asda for a couple of bits and then stuff to post so finally got home around 3pm. By 4pm I was really ill, tried to take the anti-sickness tablets as advised but boy oh boy what a time I had. Between 4 & 8.30pm when the paramedic arrived I had been sick 7 times and was really ill. The District Nurse who had been sent the paperwork advising she needed to call us early evening to see if an anti-sickness injection was required did not.........seems the District Nurses for this area were off sick!!!!! So paramedic came and administered the injection (after I was sick in front of him how awful is that!!!!) and I finally got to sleep until midnight. OH woke me then to take another sickness pill I had to take and I sleep through to 6am. Have managed a cup of tea and a couple of biscuits this morning but no appetite at all but also no sickness yet!!!!!

Was told that many foods and things I like will taste different on chemo and I have found the first one I cannot stand....COFFEE.........yes my most favourite thing in the world so looks like its fruit tea or normal tea for me now then.

So all in all not a great start but here’s hoping it will improve as the days go on. Oh and my face is really hot today almost burning, cheeks very red, temp is 36.4 so not temp..........any suggestions?

Love
Tracy xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx