been off the computer for a while (sign that I am feeling better and out and about more).
Hopefully just accepted you so you can send a private message.
My last chemo is set for 22nd June and they told me it would probably by 4-6 weeks before I would have surgery. Will know more after the last chemo. Mixed feelings really. In a way it would be good to have a break especially as the kids are off school and it would be nice to have a few days out without worrying about infections, overdoing it etc etc. The other half of me thinks the sooner the surgery, the sooner the recovery but what will be will be.
Although the chemo is smashing the tumour and there is hardly anything left, no one will commit yet to what kind of surgery I will be having. I keep thinking mastectomy so anything else would be an bonus.
Please keep in touch. From what I've heard the chemo is the worst bit and although not pleasant, surgery and rads are the easier part of treatment.
1st June is my next chemo so I will be thinking of you.
What a great feeling - I am two weeks on from my last chemo, almost feeling back to normal and knowing I won't be knocked back again next week. Have you had your last one yet?
I have a date for surgery and it took me a bit by surprise as it is 1 June. I will have to have a mastectomy as the tumour is very diffuse and also lymph nodes removed. I actually feel ok about at the moment. I'm not posting at the moment (although that might change nearer the time!!), so I don't know if you would like me to send a private message to let you know how I get on? Or if you tell me where you are posting I can try to find you via the thread.
How come your surgery will not be until August?
I'm having radiotherapy after the op and then herceptin so quite a way to go, but at least the op will be another milestone reached.
Good luck with your treatment and I hope we can keep in touch.
as I am now on the dreaded TAX I have moved across to another site but keeping dipping in on this one so keep posting so we know how you are getting on.
Tax is different to FEC and its just a case of understanding how this efects me and getting on with it. Starting to look ahead to surgery (probably not till August though) so will watch with interest to see how you get on.
Great milestone to finish the chemo...good luck with the last one.
Sorry to hear the latest chemo affected you more. People often say they have one worse than the rest. Mine worse one was number 3 too. Good luck with the tax. I've been generally ok on the last two. I'm finding after 10 days I feel virtually back to normal, although now I'm feeling a bit more tired than with the first few and have some muscle weakness. Unfortunately during the last couple of weeks I have started getting some menopausal symptoms. Hoping they might be temporary, but sounds more likely they won't be. Oh joy! Due to be referred back to the surgeon in a couple of weeks and will probably take up your suggestion of chatting on storm riders.
Take care Helen x
Hi Helen - glad to hear you're doing well!! I have had my 3 fec and now due tax x 3, this one has knocked me a bit more but 'spose I got off lightly with the first 2! My best friend from school had 4 x tac then her mastectomy and nodes 2 wks ago and is doing really well, I think you've done the hard bit Helen and can look forward to resting and getting better after the surgery....keep us posted though....come and see us on the storm riders thread - some have finished chemo and rads now on there, some are in for surgery and some starting chemo....how are you in yourself? mary x
Everyone has been very quiet recently so I hope that is a good sign. I think Julie, Carole & Mary are now on new chemo regimes? How is it going?
I am still on FEC and my last one is in two weeks time. Hooray I can't wait to finish, but then have to get my head round the next stage - a likely mastectomy and lymph nodes removal.
Hope you are all doing well
Hi Julie, I have had 3 FEC and 2 out of 3 Taxotere (Docetaxel) - last one Thursday coming, chest infection permitting. I have found Tax to be very different from Fec, biggest difference is I haven't had ANY nausea or sickness, which was really bad on Fec. I found that Days 2 - 5 I get flu-like symptoms and constant aching, this was slightly worse with the 2nd dose. Sludgy mouth and no taste, same as with Fec, constantly runny nose and eyes - most of my eyelashes have gone on Tax, yet my head hair is starting to grow back! I had heard all sorts of horror stories about Tax and was really frightened before having it but I also tried to keep an open mind. I've found it do-able which is the most important thing. I know everyone is different so obviously this is just my experience - have a look at our thread 'Anyone starting Taxotere?' as it's got some good, positive comments on there. Best of luck, Pat x
hopefully mastered the technology this time...semms to have been sent.
feeling a bit better and trying to be positive this time round. Going on to docetaxel next time..anyone know about the side efects for that? I have heard dirrefernt views, some say they are less severe but not getting my hopes up.
Carole...re periods starting again, I was told it depends on your age and what stage you were at beforehand. I have been told they may not come back but whether that means we then go into the change as well as everything else I'm not sure. Logically it should...deep joy!! Cross that bridge if/when I get there.
Off for a pamper day on Sat, organised by a local charity,just what the doctor ordred!!
Sorry, misplaced the thread there, but I've found it again and filed it.
Hope everyone's doing ok on the chemo. Coming round the flip side of the moon yet Julie? 🙂 I've got No 4 this week, then onto the CMF.
Re periods, mine came again while I was on No 3. Not recommended! Apart from it was a week late, no sign at all of it changing, and I can feel the cycle for the next one just now. Epi isn't stopping it for me then. Wonder how that affects recurrence? Must ask the onc when I see him before CMF starts.
thanks I have managed to return the email. If not let me know.
Hope everyonr else is well...time to go behind the moon for a week or so!
Hi, sorry to but into your thread, but noticed the East Yorks bit - me too!
Fantastic new unit, isn't it? Who is looking after you there?
Sent you a PM, hope you don't mind!
probably missed the boat but good luck for tomorrow both of you!
Mary, I'm up north in East Yorkshire so some way away. Brand new cancer hospital on the doorstep though which was officially opened by the Queen two weeks ago. Excellent facilities which makes things a lot easier and I know I am in safe hands with (apprantly) some of the best consultants in the country.
hi Helen - good luck for yours too tomorrow! I'm going to drink plenty today if I can and def tomorrow....know what you mean about bugs etc - I was going camping last weekend, well stopping in friends trailer tent not mine for sat night but heard she had sore throat n cough so I had to be sensible! mary x
Hi Mary & Julie,
Good luck for the chemos this week. I'm having my 4th tomorrow. Trying to drink loads of water today. Was supposed to be going back to work last week (my best week of the three week cycle) but unfortunately my colleague had a sore throat and cold so the hospital advised me to stay away. During my next good week hoping to go away for a few days in our caravan.
Keep your spirits up.
hi julie - good luck for chemo no. 4 on wed, we'll be in the same boat! I hope to have the hickman line sorted today or tomorrow ready for wednesday. Re the hair it came out with a vengeance on thurs in the shower, everywhere and looked very sad when I got out so my friend shaved it and on the scarf went, went out in the wig on thurs night but it needs trimming yet.....where abouts are you julie? I'm nr shropshire/mid wales border....mary x
Hi Helen and Mary,
Had a good week this week and will make the most of the early part of next week before the next chemo on Wednesday. This will be my fourth is half way thru by then. Will take a lot longer off work this time (possibly 10 days) as I overdid it a bit last time.
Mary..my periods stopped after the second dose. I am 46 soon as well so like Helen I'm not sure what will happen at the end of all this. Just be warned about the hair loss...when it goes it seems to go quite quickly and I found it quite upsetting to see it fall out it lumps so went for the really short option and started wearing the wig. Quite used to the wig/scarves bit now...everyone says how good the wig looks but I think it could be quite a bind in the summer.
good luck for next week.
Hi Mary, Glad you are ok. My hair started falling out day 16, but I think it can vary a lot. I decided to shave it off after a couple of days of it falling out and did feel much better for it. It's amazing how quickly you can get used to things - I'm quite happy wearing my hats and my wig when I go out. As for periods I am surprised that so far mine have continued. Doc said they might well stop, possibly for good as I am 46, so I'm still waiting on that one. I was supposed to be going into work this week for a few days, but a colleague has a sore throat and cold, so I've to keep away. Doing some working from home instead on my laptop - not quite the same as I would have like to have seen my colleagues, but I don't want to risk getting ill or putting the treatment off.
hi helen - day 13 today, waiting for the hair drop....how did your hair do?? Been ok after bad day day 6 and feeling usual self....just wondering about the wonderful world of periods and whether or not mine will arrive or has it been chased away??!! The joy of it all......mary x
Julie, yes I am still here and unfortunately I felt a bit like you for the first 10 days of the third chemo.It seem to get me down more this time, especially as the nausea went away for a few days and then came back However I feel really good again now and have done for a few days. Going back to work tomorrow for 3 days. have booked a short break by the coast for my next best week ie first week of the school holidays. I hope its not tempting fate, but it's something to look forward too and there will only be 2 chemos left after that.
Mary, hope you are still getting on ok.
Spring weather should help to boost our spirits
hi julie - now day 9 after first fec and like you said the fear of the unknown is the worse I think and the dread of it.....hope you're feeling better now then...mary x
where is everyone???
hopefully you have not all been feeling like me this last week.Been a bit fed up with it all after dose three as the reality set in...long way to go yet and the first week of chemo is not pleasant. Really sufered this time from the awful taste in my mouth which meant I hardly ate anything for a week but coming out of it now and back to my old self again. Next time round I wont even bother trying to find food that tastes good and just opt for the cerial without sugar option which was just about edible.
Been more tired this time round but again that is to be expected. Hopefully this will get better this week as I dont appear to have too many side effects after week one.
At least the weather is getting better, the bulbs are out and lighter nights are just around the corner. Lots to look forward to then when you think about it.
Just had dose 3 of chemo. Saw the consultant and he said the lump is skrinking really well so at least I know that it seems to be worth putting up with the side effects. Beginning to think I am doing too much at work. Planning to go back next Monday but as it catches uop with me I should perhaps take a week off. I'll see how I feel at the weekend. Definate pattern emerging re the side effects so at least I know how long I will have to put up with the various side effects.
Still seems a long road ahead but as you say Helen, got to think of it in terms of next one will see us half way through.
Mary..the first is the worst in that you dont know what to expect. The actual chemo is fine its the side effects that are the unknown. Everyone is different but once you have the first lot it settles you tremendously.
Good to see all is well with everyone. Must go and send hubby out for some carbonated water!!!
Apparently tonic water is good for your veins, it has quinine in it. It helps prevent night-cramps, anyway, so it might help with some of the effects of the chemo.
I have started another thread under Chemo section, so I will start commenting there instead of here, if thats ok
Chemo was ok on thurs, apart from stupid needle phobia kicking in.
so far so good with very few side effects. Just a funny taste in mouth and I keep yawning
fluid is a problem for me, as I am one of those who does not drink much. first two days I did try hard with fluid but I will have to try harder, as I barely drink anything normally
hi i had 3 fec and 3 tax last one on monday coming . the last 3 tax were the worst but I still worked full time and would not let it get the better of me . listen to your body dont ignore it and look after yourself .
hi everybody - I'm dreading next week and starting the chemo but also want to get it all underway - I've been feeling really anxious again and tearful which is annoying the hell out of me as I was doing very well and being upbeat on the whole, but there you go eh... I have wig fun tuesday am, picc insertion pm and as long as its ok first chemo on wed....its really reassuring to hear all your experiences ...keep well, mary x
Lisa. Hope you are getting on ok with the chemo - as Carole said keep taking the water. I'm finding I prefer carbonated water - it seems to taste more refreshing and helps with any nausea.
Good luck to Mary with your chemo next week.
I'm back for third FEC next tuesday. I felt slightly more nauseous after the second treatment than the first. This time I will make sure I take the anti-nausea tablets before I really need them.
I went back to work for a few days last week - it was great to go in. Didn't get much work done the first day - just seemed to be catching up with everyone!!! It gave me a real boost to go in' Lots of people thought I'd had my hair highlighted and not realised I'd got a wig, so that was a nice confidence booster. I will try to go in every third week.
Carole - you look really elegant in your headscarf. Hope you are feeling ok - I guess you should be on the up again now.
Julie - hope you are doing well. We are nearly half way through the doses now and it won't be long before we are half way through the whole of the chemo. Can't be bad.
Keep your spirits up everyone.
Hi Lisa - I start mine next week....3 x fec and then 3 x tax, having a PICC line in on tuesday.....all the best for tomorrow, mary x
Had pre-chemo today things have slightly changed no longer 5 months chemo I have been accelerated which has really worried Tom
Chemo starts tomorrow. Ct scan on Fri
stage one Epirubicin & Cyclphospohamide = 4 doses every two weeks over eight weeks. Chemo on Thur then on Sun start 1 injection daily of GCSF for 7 days
stage two Paclitaxel = 8 doses over eight weeks
towards end of Chemo start Herceptin every three weeks
At end of Chemo start radiotherapy
I'm finding I don't actually want tea or coffee. Must be my body telling me what it needs. I'm getting addicted to hot water with just a tiny splash of cordial, and of course my beloved chamomile tea.
I was told to drink 2 lites of fluid/water a day during chemo....this does not include tea or coffee as they dehydrate you.
All the best
Best tip for chemo is to drink loads of water before you get it, during it, then for the next week afterwards to flush it through. I mean loads! And remember what Julie said - leap around when you feel ok, pay for it afterwards. 😄 Take it really easy during week 1. No cardio work outs! Rest and sleep as much as you need to, to let your body cope with the drug onslaught. It gets miles easier in week 2.
got a letter from hospital yesterday. Chemo pre-assessment 25-2-09 and Chemo starts the following day 26-2-09. I am having 2 drugs mixed together for the first stage every two weeks for 4 doses. the second stage will be a single drug every week until the end of the five months. then it is radiotherapy. plus towards end of chemo they are going to start me on Herceptin every 3 weeks.
I am hoping that the Chemo will be kind to me and not give me too many side effects.
You are so right Julie. Find the positive, ditch the baggage.
It sounds like your daughter will be find her way. It is a confusing age, but you're also pretty aware and mature at 14 (at least I think I remember starting to sort out some pretty serious stuff in my head back then). You sound like you have a great relationship. It's all about leaving the communication route open really as you say.
Wow, I can still remember that far back! Or does that mean my short term memory's going.
What was I saying?
Carole and Helen,
glad you are both well. Had dose two last Wed so coming up for one week after that dose now. Was definately more tired this time so really have to watch myself. Temptation is to leap around when I feel well and then be drained afterwards.
Off work with the kids this week for half term and although we should have been away it is actually quite nice to take it easy, go for long walks and just slow down for a change. Hate being ill but it does make you realise what hectic lives we generally live and makes you question why???
I am a firm believer in finding a postive in every experience and perhaps when all this is over we will have had a real serious rethink about what is important in life. Just wish I could help my eldest daughter (also called Helen) out a bit. At 14 this is all a little confusing for her and I am worried she is trying to bottle it up and pretend its not happening. We have had some good chats over the past few days and she seems to be opening up a bit and I am sure she will find her way round this in due course. Life is hard enough at that age without having to get your head round this as well. We are really close though so we will get through this together
good to see you are recovering well.
Take care everyone
Ah, that makes more sense. 🙂 And week two is lowest blood count week anyway. Your work sound fantastic about it, and you're right about normality. Such a boost to the system.
That's dose 2 into me. Different nurse, different experience. First she managed to miss the vein and tried shoving the needle through my hand instead. Yeeoouch! Then she put the Epi in too fast so I was getting a back up in the hand, and needed a hot pack on the arm to loosen the vein off again. And of course, too fast...not enough saline. I spotted it once my hand was getting achey and told her to slow it up, and that helped. However, I still have a more concentrated dose in me and am definitely feeling the effects quicker. C'est la vie. At least now I know to take more control over the process next time and do some directing if I feel it's needed.
Onwards and upwards!
Next week will be my third week (I think I confused you with my wording) I don't think I really want to go back to work before that. Work have been great and I can just tell them what hours I want to do, so I probably won't do my full hours at least not to start with. I can't do most of my usual job as I'm not at work enough, but there is work I can do in the office.
I'm looking forward to a bit of normality and catching up with colleagues.
wbc must be fine as they haven't called to cancel. I hadn't thought about green veg being a booster. I adore spring greens and kale. Must up the proportion of them then.
Excellent news about your lymph shrinkage, and that you feel well enough to go back to work in week 2. You'll know to take it easy though. If you feel it is tiring you too much, have you got the option of maybe just doing a couple of days nearer the end of the week at all? I found week 3 there pretty good.
Speak later. Got to go drink another lakefull of water and get ready. 🙂
Hope all goes well tomorrow. Nearly two down already! I was amazed with my pre-chemo blood test last week. Turned out to have a higher white cell count than before the first chemo! I think it was due the green veg craving!
Glad you are coping with the hair loss well.
I'm having pre-op chemo and so can partly judge how the chemo is working by my lymph node which had shrunk by 2/3 when the consultant checked it last week, so that has spured me on. It will also mean the lumpectomy will be less invasive in the armpit. Unfortunately though my breast tumour is so diffuse that they told me I will definitely have to have a masectomy in due course however well the chemo works as they can't be sure of catching all the cancer by a lumpectomy.
Feeling optimistic and hoping to go back to work next week (and if all goes well the third week of each cycle) Julie you seem to be at work about half of the time. Hope it is working out for you.
Best wishes to everyone.
Julie, I've got the same wee bit of hair on top. Feel a bit like Stan Laurel. 🙂 No wig yet, and I've got chemo tomorrow which means I won't be fit for the hour drive till next Monday, but I'm getting quite used to the hat and scarf thing, so I can hold out. Hoping I'll be as pleased as you and Helen with the wig. I'll post a picture at some point.
Lisa, excellent that you now have your treatment plan. When do you start the chemo?
Right, better get into the shower. Off to get my bloods done today in advance of tomorrow. Fingers crossed my wbc is fine. First time for that since the first dose, so we'll see how good I am at being at little cell factory.
lymph nodes had cancer in so got to have another ct scan
then 5 months chemo in two stages. first stage 2 drugs combined very 2 weeks for 4 doses. second stage one drug I thought it was something beginning with P but not sure now. something every week until end of 5 months. radiotherapy after chemo.
Herceptin to start towards end of chemo and then every 3 weeks after that
so will definately be bald for my 40th birthday party!!!
good to see we are all well and busy typing away. Just been for second dose of chemo and so far so good but that's what I said last time. I have come away with a haul of anti sickness drugs that Boots would be proud of so hopefully that will do the trick.
Also got the results of all the scans which thankfully were all clear. I had to ask the doctor though! He forgot to mention it!
Had my hair cut very short at the weekend so am now in the wig and buffs (to be recommended). Had some buffs in stock already but they are easy to pick up from places like Blacks as well as on line. My 14 year daughter is quite uncomfortable re my hair loss, but seems to be getting used to it. Its not all gone yet, I still have some on top but finding the wig quite handy really, saves messing around in the mornings before work! My dad, who we see most days, didn't actually spot that I was wearing the wig! that's men for you.
Its really good to see we are all going through the same things re chemo, but also helpful to see those who are at different stages so I know what to expect. Just getting my head round chemo at the moment but Lisa's updates re surgery help to give some idea as to what might lie ahead.
Have been referred to a genetics clinic on Friday (as my mum had BC and I have two daughters) so will be interesting to see what they have to say.
Keep smiling everyone!!!
Julie - I don't know about chemo yet. My post op appointment is on wed. First I will see my consultant/surgeon then I will meet my oncologist to find out what is going to happen next.
off of all tablets now (iron, paracetamol & ibuprofen) but been having a few dizzy/light headed spells today, so practice nurse wants me to go for a blood test tomorrow to check my iron levels again. how I hate needles, I have a real phobia about them.
Hi to everyone including Julie Geewiz & Jayne. it's a shame we have to meet because of BC but it's good to be in touch with you.
Glad to hear Lisa is ok.
I have to go to my next chemo tomorrow morning and as I live in the sticks have an hour's drive to the Leicester Royal Infirmary and they have forecast loads of snow tonight!! My son's school is opening later than usual because of the predicted snow, so will have to sort something out for him. I'll sort it though - there's no way I'm missing out on the treatment, even though you don't really look forward to having it. I've been fine for the last 10 days so I hope tomorrow's treatment will follow suit.
Thanks Julie for the comments on getting used to the bald look. I think my son is getting used to it already (He's 12) I've had to promise not go bald in front of his friends though!!
I see everyone is loading photos will have to find one and find out how to put it on soon. I might get one taken of me sporting my wig -I'm really pleased with it have used it a couple of times already when I've been out. I thought it would itch, but it's been ok.
Good to hear from you Lisa, you sound to be doing so well.
I sympathise with the bra problem - I was a 32gg amd have really struggled too. My successful purchases so far have been an underwired post surgery one from M&S, ordinary full support from the same place plus a couple of R*yce sports bras. I'm struggling more with the soft prosthesis than the bra - the surgeon left lots of excess skin ready for my reconstruction late this year which is great, but in the meantime I'm a sort of deformed A/B cup, very odd!
When do you start your chemo Lisa?
Hope everyone else is getting on well too,
I have my follow up appt 11-2-09.
All stitches etc are now all gone.
Underside of arm feels weird, almost like pins and needles but not. Sort of like when you get a shiver down your spine but this feeling just stays in the top of my arm, all very strange. My armpit is completely numb which my girls think is hilarious. I had to sit the other day with my arm up and my eyes closed while the girls tickled me under the arm to check that it really is numb.
I do have some slight swelling where my boob used to be but that is mainly on each end of the scar, so I still have what looks like a cleavage, which really confuses people, when I have my nice padded softie cushion in. the other end of the scar feels like a lump under my arm so I cannot sleep on my side yet
Having previously warn a 32H bra I am having problems trying to find a post op or post suregery bra. I think I have now found two sites that maybe be able to help by sewing pockets into normal bras for me. I have my prothesis appt in March.
All in all everything is going fine for me. Hope the rest of yu are all doing well as well
I didn't know what buffs were either until a friend who went through all this a year before me gave me some! They are fine knitted jersey tubes that you can wear as a hat (very comfy) or a headband or round your neck etc etc. You can get them in outdoor shops (popular amongst skateboarders and bikers apparently!) or online - just google buff. All my children have them now too, so we are a buff family!
Glad you are all enjoying good weeks. Even in the less good times, I always told myself that each day done was one day less to go.
Helen, Julie, don't worry about your or your son's reaction to your new bald look - I think most of us go through it, but it is amazing how we get used to things in time. At first, I didn't want anyone to see me like that at all, and used to wear a towelling turban with my dressing gown so that I could swan around always looking as though I had just got out of the bath! However, I have gradually got more used to my appearance, and now often don't bother to wear anything on my head around the house. I think I've shocked a few postmen and deliverymen, but hey!
Are you all being affected by the snow? We had quite a bit yesterday and more due tonight, so I am glad I have no hospital appointments this week. I hope that the weather improves once my radiotherapy starts and I have an hours journey each way every day!
Jayne - are you having any treatment at the moment?
Best wishes to all,
Julie, Helen, second chemo this week, yes? How are you feeling in your "good" week? This is me just coming to the end of week 2 and I think I feel completely normal again. I'm hoping we get a "good" week each time before the next does.
The hair started coming out yesterday. It's a really weird thing isn't it? I think it'll take me another couple of days before I need to cut it off, but I'm seeing Wednesday as the big day. Can't face it till it actually looks too thin to bear. Got a couple of wigs ordered on Friday in my colour, which I can hopefully see next week and make my choice.
Julie, you'll have decades of skiing time! Don't feel too disappointed.
Julie (Geewhiz), what's a buff? Somebody else mentioned it somewhere too.
Jayne, that is one cheeky cat! Glad the chemo's getting easier.