SusieQ good luck on 14th &15th - not sure how to ease any panic, can only say look at Feb, Jan monthly threads as well as march starters. You are not alone, people here care. Look after yourself, treat yourself, remember to love yourself.
Sandi - my PICC line is now in. My experience today: Nurse consultant explained procedure in detail, answered my questions (is it ok to drive? - yes, do I continue with post surgery exercises? - yes, use arm as usual, what about having blood pressure measured? - they will be careful and measure lower arm or calf) told me he would be gowned up (to prevent infection) and that preparation would take longer than the procedure (he was right). I didn't watch, kept my eyes closed (counting backwards from 1000 going back to 1000 every time I made a mistake) and followed any instructions to move my arm or head. After line inserted I was sent for a chest x-ray to make sure everything was in right place, then allowed to go home. I have taken a couple of paracetamol and am "aware" of the dressing and sleeve around it. When I got home there was a message from the vets saying it was ok to collect my kittens, so I took a deep breath and got in the car. Changing gears cautiously I managed to get to vet & back home. Don't plan on driving tomorrow, but it was doable. "doable" seems to have become my new mantra.
Good luck with your procedure, I hope you get the time, explanations and kindness that I had.
Horrible & **bleep**ty are excellent descriptions of BC. About the picc line:
My Picc line goes in tomorrow, will report back on how it goes. I know there will be a local anaesthetic. I am assuming I will still be able to drive after as I have to collect my kittens from the vet when I get back (dropping them off before I go - their neutering appointment booked before my picc line insertion). I'm trying to make sure that my life goes on as normal as it can be under the circumstances.
When I had my cycle 1 on Friday, there were problems finding the vein and getting a blood sample - I'm looking on the picc line as reducing these problems.
Don't know how I will manage, but taking the view that "I am able to deal with..." and only dealing with one thing at a time, anything else can just disappear.
Take care of yourself, and look at the threads on the other monthly forums for inspiration.
Have had Cycle 1 today, it was a struggle to find a vein & in the end a canula put in "awkward position" -their words - over wrist. Will be having a PICC-line put in Monday. I have now discovered the cold cap should be renamed the really, really cold, wet, and heavy cap BUT found it doable, and if it works, worth it. Glad to be home.
Respect to the others sharing my bay on the ward - a strong, stoic, humerous bunch (& I include their companinions in that description) who were also kind to the newbie (me!). And me? I fell asleep and snored my way through treatment!
Good luck to all, positive thoughts your way,
Just to give you the opposite perspective, I did FEC x3 & Paclitaxel x12 & requested a port on the advice of a friend, which sits under your skin, so you can bathe normally & do sports (should you wish to. I played golf throughout & the exercise really kept me going. Sounds mad, but it helps reduce fatigue). I used to sit there on chemo/blood test days watching all the other ladies struggling for access. Mine was in in 2 secs & they give you anaesthetic cream, so you don't feel a thing. A lot if people get nearly to the end & end up having one anyway, so I thought I would go for it right away & save my one-armed veins for the future. I also think these drugs are super toxic & are best put into a big vein with fast blood flow. Just a thought. It was a god send as far as I was concerned & it come out as soon as you finish. Good luck with it all.
Hi JenJen...only a few more to go whahey! Bet you can't wait. Last rads for me tomorrow exactly 10 months after I found the mutant boob lump.
You'll get there ladies
Hi, I started my first fec cycle yesterday(Picc line), have had waves of nausea and dizziness since and sleeping was difficult as I felt on edge, probably due to a full on day I'd had and the steroids, suppose there is more to come?? Xx, how's everyone else feeling? Xx
I had my "chat" with the Chemo nurse today and came away with feeling that I was being pushed to agree to picc line. Not sure I want to - any of you with experience of it have any feelings either way? Treatment will be Herceptin and Taxol with the cold cap, and I know that there will be blood tests every week. Feeling more scared now than I was about the surgery and knowing that they treat about 100 patients a day with chemo is not makiing me feel better (I know it should inspire confidence but has left me feeling more of a number and less of a person).
Take care of yourselves out there,
thanks for your good wishes. Weirdly for me so far the IVF has been the worst bit. Physically it's fine but I find the process really stressful! I'm sorry to hear your first cycles didn't work.
Masectomy was ok, not as bad as I imagined in the build up... And it's a pretty nice moment afterwards when the lump was gone (obvs along with the rest). It felt like progress towards getting this whole nightmare over had jumped forward a mile. I had a diep reconstruction with it which was difficult for the first 2 days or so but recovery has gone well. It's been 4 weeks and I pretty much feel like Im normal, except for increased nap requirements!!
I don't think there is such a thing as 'backwards' in treatment... Everyone seems to have such an different plan for their treatment. How are you feeling about starting chemo?
Me too, I start on weds the 2nd, just want it to start now (or go away)
plots of love and hugs to all
I am due to start 4 cycles of EC chemo on Friday 4th March. I am one of those "low benefit" patients that has had to make decision whether or not to have chemo.
Since January I have had 2 lumpectomies then finally a mx and full node clearance. I had a 1.3mm grade 2 invasive tumour, 8 cm of DCIS and 1/22 nodes positive. ER +,PR+, HER -. I am married, 51yrs old with two children 12 & 13 yrs.
it has been such a hard decision to make but I have received some excellent support from this forum. I still sometimes wonder if the Tamoxifen would be enough on its own but I know I would worry every day that I hadn't done all I could to try and beat this horrible disease.
I'm certainly not looking forward to this next journey. I was recently speaking to a friend and I described having cancer as being placed on a moving conveyor belt. You don't want to be on it and it won't stop moving forward..taking you to all sorts of places you don't want to be.
Anyway, I hope we can all stay positive and support each other. I find I am constantly trawling the internet trying to learn more although it does frighten me at times.
Sorry we all have to be here but I shall look forward to sharing our hopefully positive experiences .😀
As I read the threads my eyes start and I have to blink a bit - the support means so much.
On a lighter note, has anyone else besides me done a "dry run" to find the exact location of the cancer Day Unit? My appointment isn't until next week, but I went on public transport, found the hospital, the right lifts, the right floor, put my head around the door then went home, satisfied that I knew where I would be going next week! Made me wonder if a little bit of Autistic behaviour had rubbed off on me (I teach in a Special School, young people who are on the Autistic Spectrum and others who have Moderate Learning Difficulties) as I drill/go over events well in advance with my students!
I have tremendous admiration for those who continue to work through diagnosis & treatment - can only say that by being "signed off" I am giving a Supply Teacher a block of work.
Look after yourselves,
I am from the November 2015 thread and am 5 weeks off finishing 21 weeks of chemo
Sorry you are having to join us like Bibi said it seems like a long hard slog at the start but you hit a point where you start looking forward and it just seems a bit easier.
there is lots of advice on the forum so please feel free to pop into previous months threads and ask us.
My top tip is sometimes a few days after chemo a couple of days after you stop taking the steroids they give you , you feel a bit down its normal it happened to me and its happened to others you arent going crazy and it'll pass in a day or so
Drink lots of water/decaf tea or coffee /squash etc it really helps
even if you feel really tired unless you feel dizzy or unstable on your feet try to get out for a little walk each day it does help with the fatigue
dont become a hermit ! 🙂 its easy to get worried about infection and lock yourself away but it becomes very depressing very quickly, you should be cautious to avoid sick people and that person coughing and spluttering inthe supermarket avoid large crowds etc but trips to the supermarket , library etc when its not busy are what breaks up the day and makes you feel loads better mentally just remember alcogel is your friend when out and about 🙂
the build up to chemo is worse than the actual chemo you can and will do it xx
Sorry to hear your diagnosis ladies & all the best for getting through your treatment. It will seem endless, stretching out in front of you at the beginning, but once you get over the chemo halfway point you will see a bit of light at the end of the tunnel. I was Aug 2015, so just finishing rads right now. You will have some low points, but also some laughs with the ladies here. There are lots of fixes for side effects so please ask the ladies on earlier threads for tips as well as your doctors. Everyone is happy to help & support you. All the best. xxx
people here not just supportive & inspirational - it's the feeling of being part of a community that is here, that knows and understands what it is I (& others) are/will face and that I (& others) will come out the other side.
this afternoon I had phone call from Guy's to say that my "Chemo chat" with nurses will be next Tuesday, chemo to start next week. Only know that the sooner I start, the sooner I will finish. Good luck with your oncologist meeting. I liked it when mine described themselves with "we poison people!" - good to know they have a sense of humour.
Take care of yourself,
Thanks Kim - I'm finding the waiting (for the start date) difficult, my sister wants to attend with me & I know she has work commitments to take into account. It also seems strange to have chemo after being told surgery a success. I have been told it's preventive, and to get any stray cells.
Will be getting in the water!
Hi Platinum, just dropping in from January starters 🙂
I'm sure you will be joined by others starting chemo in March soon, its sad to see another thread start, but also good because it means the support continues.
Be sure to come and drop in on the other monthly chemo threads for support, tips and advise - or just a general rant! I'm always dipping into the December thread to see how they are getting on. I find it really helps. I also drop in on the Feb starters to see how they are getting on too.
I'm on a different regime to you - having FEC-T which is 3 cycles of FEC and 3 cycles of T (doxetaxol - I think!) but the biggest piece of advice I can give and I'm pretty sure it would go with any chemo regime, is to drink masses of water! 2L the day before, the day of and the day after chemo. I then try to keep drinking as much water as I can for the next week or so.
Wishing you all the very best 🙂
I have had my surgery (lumpectomey, 4 sentinel nodes removed), pathology results (HER2 positive) and am now waiting for a start date for Herceptin & Taxol. Anyone out there due to start soon?
Good luck to all Feb & Jan starters!