Sus12 - they come in small, medium, large and extra large sizes. Unfortunately they don't make it easy for you to work out which bra sizes correspond. I have medium size ones, so for a F cup you would need large or extra large. It is probably better to get one that's a bit too big than one that's too tight.
Sus12 - have you tried a padded crop top? I have been wearing these to go out instead of a bra as they are more comfortable and there is less risk of rubbing. I am now going completely bra-less all the time at home as advised, but was wearing a crop top to start with (I am only 34C though). They are not expensive and you can get them from large supermarkets such as Asda and Sainsbury's. There is one slight snag with them, which is that the pads are loose and migrate in the wash, and it is a faff to get them back in place.
Truey - I am actually 53 (63 is my DOB not my age!). My menopause started at 49 so also relatively early. I haven't taken exercise seriously until diagnosis. I also allow myself a small glass of wine on Sundays (had one or two more at Christmas and on holiday), but have cut out alcohol otherwise except in cooking.
Hi Old Dawn,
Sorry I can't remember how old you said you were.....The osteoporosis was a surprise to me as I'm "only" 61, although I had a relatively early menopause at 48.
What has made me even more frustrated is that since I was about 30 I have been doing weight training 2-3 times a week right up until the cancer diagnosis - lot if good that 30 years of workouts did in preserving bone density!! 😨
I think a glass of wine is in order at the weekend......
My nipple was sore and itchy from about half way through my rads, When I saw the skin care radiographer she gave me the polymem dressings which I used to put over the nip when I had my bra on. I carried on doing this right through to the end of the post two weeks and it seemed to help me.
At your next apt mention to them that you are having problems with it and see what they suggest.
Truey - that is good news about the shingles, so hopefully you can get away soon. Not such good news about the scan, but at least they know and can give you something for it. I haven't had a scan yet and don't know when I will get one, but I have got calcium and Vitamin D tablets to go with the Letrozole. I suppose at my age they are not expecting me to have osteoporosis yet, but I thought they were supposed to do a scan anyway as a record of the 'baseline' position before I start on the tablets.
Thanks, Ladybowler, that's reassuring. I will also have the Intrasite (sounds like a property agent, lol) and Instillagel as back up - have just put in script at pharmacy, and will collect when today's zap is finished. Could be a long wait though, because LA4 is running an hour late. Appointments have been running on time all this week up to now, thought it was going too well...
Hi Kezzar. Blimy, you've counted the little B**g*rs! Good luck with the Anastrozole and Rads. Like others on here I looked at the packet for ages before taking the first one, and kind of expected some sort of instant "incredible hulk" type metamorphosis - aren't we daft sometimes? 7 weeks on Anastrozole and I'm still looking in a magnifying mirror to see if I've got hair on my chin and less on my head. Probably got it to come! xxx
Thanks, Kezzar, my shingles is clearing up very quickly which I'm pleased about. Looks like the antivirals caught it in time. My post-treatment radiotherapy "flare" has been minimal too, so all good. 🙂
However, in the typical way that this journey has endless twists and turns, I got the results of my DEXA scan done as a baseline before my hormone therapy. Unfortunately it showed I already have osteoporosis in my lumbar spine, so now that needs to be investigated and treated!! Sometimes I wonder if all this will ever be truly over. 😰
On on the plus side, my onc did say that it was fine to start hormone treatment after rads and that waiting a week is ideal but 2-3 weeks is fine too. As I am going for my first weekend away this week, he suggested the best idea is to start after returning, proving doctors really do think about the effect this is having on us. I have been luckier than some ladies on here in that my cancer team has been supportive and thoughtful throughout, so here's a shout out for the Milton Keynes team. Great job folks, thanks!
Glad to hear that you are feeling better now, we are all entitled to have a rant, that is why this forum is so good, it allows us to do that knowing that we are in company of people who totally understand.
I had 15 regular and 5 boosters. The area where the boosters were done, which is at the very top of my breast went rather red at the end of the 5 sessions and then over the next couple of weeks turned to brown, as it would do if you were very sunburnt. I did my normal routine of moisturising whilst having them and the skin didnt break down.
Sorry for rant below about radiotherapy boosters, oncologists and statistics (think positive thoughts!)
On a more positive note, thanks Blueleyla, Ann-m and Ladybowler for your feedback on hormone therapy. I haven't been staring at the Letrozole box lately (it's still in the cupboard) but I think I will be ready to start taking it once the radiotherapy is finished, provided I am not too sore and uncomfortable from that. I am still not happy about having to take them, but I am not as angry and scared about it as I was. It has given me a lot more confidence knowing that others have already taken the plunge, and are not suffering any bad effects.
Hi Blueleyla. I feel so much better now having read yours, and the other posts. I having my first meeting on 10th to set up and then rads start after Easter. Onwards. Xxxx
Thanks Truey. Hope the shingles is settling down. I'm hoping to report an incident free rads session by May bank holiday! Xx
Welcome back Rach, glad you were able to get away. It is reassuring to hear that your skin reaction was unusual, and I hope it is now improving.
Even so, I will be lucky to avoid burns from the boosters from what the oncologist said yesterday. I have been given a prescription for some gel and cream which I will collect from the hospital pharmacy tomorrow.
He is recommending the boosters because he says the risk of recurrence would be reduced by half compared to having only the standard 15. This isn't as impressive as it sounds though, when you actually look at the results of the relevant clinical trials, which suggest that the benefits for patients of my age are marginal. Warning - rant follows.
Why do the doctors always quote the relative difference a particular treatment would in theory make, rather than the absolute difference? This is exactly the same tactic people use when they are trying to sell you stuff. Without knowing what the 'baseline' is (i.e. the difference the standard treatment makes), telling you an extra treatment is twice as effective is meaningless! And worse still, why don't I ever - politely but firmly - challenge them about this? I wouldn't be afraid to if they were anyone else! End of rant.
The only reason I have agreed to go ahead with the boosters is because my husband wants me to have them. He has agreed that I can stop if I get any serious problems with burns or soreness. So I will have to see how I get on (watch this space).
And we will be ringing the bells for you on Monday, what time is your appointment?
Yay, glad to have you back and I am sure you had a wonderful time xxx
Isnt it funny we take this tablet and sit there waiting to see what it will do to us.
Fab way to look at it, the first quarter of this year over and a new start, loving it.
Just to say I was the same, I spent a week fretting about taking tamoxifen. I have been on it now for 4 months, the only real side effects I am aware of are that I have a lovely flush about an hour or so after taking it in the morning, I do from time to time suffer with constipation but I think that is exascerbated on days when I probably do not drink enough water. I think that they are manageable and when you think of how it is keeping me safe it is a small price to pay.
Thanks sweet I appreciate your reply. Today I had nothing on my mind except the pills side effects but I guess I have to give it a try and see how it goes.
Wish you well
I'm on Letrozole and when you read the list of side effects it's scary. I have been ok so far, probably more emotional but that could also be because of everything I've been through. I know there are several brands of Letrozole so I am assuming it's the same for tamoxifen so if you have problems with one brand ask to try another. Also I think others have also said if you have problems you are more likely to post . Hope that helps .
Hi ladies I'm Catherine I'm almost finished the rads only 2 more to go thank God almost over. I'm very worried about side effects of tamoxifen because I don't usually take pills. Does anyone know of other natural ways of removing estrogen from the body? Believe me I'm terrified of these pills. Good day to you all
Hi Lovely Ladies
Thank you so much for the bell ringing and kind words,
Bluelayla, sounds like a good idea to meet others, I am planning on joining a local swimming group for ladies with BC, they book a pool for a couple of hours twice a week so no worries about hair etc, maybe there is one in your area, good luck
Hugs mary x
Congratulations Maryminder! You aced it!
It it is very emotional at first (and not necessarily in a good way) but now, a week after finishing, I'm beginning to feel the joy - hope you do too 😀👍
YOU MADE IT 🍾🎉🎉🎉
Congratulations on finishing Maryminder, and hope you feel more confident once you have got back into a more normal routine.
congratulations on finishing radiotherapy. I finished three weeks ago and my next appointment is the middle of June. It seems so strange not seeing anyone until then. I have the phone number to call if I am worried but seem to be on my own now and it's scary. Thinking I might phone and see if there is a social group that I go to to meet others in the same situation.
These bells are ringing especially for you but also for your lovely hubby. The next two weeks will possibly see an intensity in the effect of the rads so carry on doing the moisturising, drinking plenty of fluid and rest, your body will tell you what it wants to do that one.
Enjoy your meal out tomorrow night, you soooo deserve it.
Final treatment done and dusted
I had a bit of a wobble today when asked how I was,said I have got so used to appointments and trips to see doctors that the thought of not seeing anyone until my next one at the end of May was a bit daunting and scary, they reminded me that If i was worried about anything then I could ring the BC Nurses or them if it was to do with the radiotherapy se's.
My OH is taking me out for dinner tomorrow evening to celebrate, it has been hard on him as well and I could not have got through it without him by my side, so plan to spend some time together doing "normal" stuff, as for the summer, luckily I don't have to worry about work so will aim on getting myself fit and strong for my new boob surgery
Good Luck to everyone still undergoing treatment
Hugs Mary xx
Thanks Helena, I will most like jump to the new thread.
Had no3 today. Last night I noticed swelling in my breast again, the nipple and the armpit where the nodes were taken, and it was still hard and tender again this morning. I spoke to the radiology girls, who reassured me and took extra X-rays to check toady. They confirmed that it is due to the radiotherapy, though most ladies do take slightly longer to react. Trust me to get the side effects after only 2 sessions 😳. They are going to keep an eye on me and X-ray again tomorrow to check. Has anyone else had this?
Thank you for all your support ladies xxx
As we are coming towards the end of March, I thought I would start a new thread for the ladies who will be starting or continuing/completing their rads in April. Hope that is ok.
Well todays the day for you, final rad session. Let us know when you have finished it and we can ring the bells for you.
Oh I can totally relate to the emotional state durign radiotherapy. In fact on one occasion the nurse asked me how I was, I just burst into floods of tears, saying it was all too much for me being controlled by this daily appointment and that my life was not my own, they were wonderful totally understanding and I had lots of hugs from them to put me back on my feet 🙂
Like you, although I did not have chemo so respect to you that you worked during that as well, I worked albeit it only 12 hours a week whilst I was having rads. I planned it so that I had a week off work, which is actually 10 days because I dont work Thursday pm and Fridays, from the day after I finished my rads. It also allowed me to have most of the two weeks post rads period that they advise you that you will carry on "cooking", It was the best thing I did because it really did allow me to "recover" from the daily impact of travelling to/from the hospital.
I do not think it is silly at all for you to want to have that time off, ok you have finished active treatment but you are still recovering from everything you have neen through and emotionally you need to recharge I would seriously take up the offer from your MD they sound really lovely.
Yay the last 5 they are a lot shorter than the regular ones and you are now on the homeward stretch, well done you. I have made a note of your finishing date and we will be ringing the bells on here for yo.
JoJo - I am impressed, I have had 10 radiotherapies so far and haven't managed to break the machine yet. Mind you, it was out of action for servicing last Thursday, so maybe I did and they are just too polite to say...
Today's radiotherapy appointment was actually on time (have now just about recovered from the shock), and we managed to do the round trip in 2 hours - a record!
Helen - most hospitals will try to accommodate existing commitments such as work, and will give you early morning appointments if ask for them. If you don't make a point of asking though, it may be pot luck, because they're often overstretched so they fit you in when they can. I get a different radiotherapy appointment every day and they're often running late, sometimes very late.
P.S. My planning appointment only lasted about an hour. I think it depends on the type of radiotherapy you are having and whether they brief you at the same time or separately. From what I've read I think if you are having IMRT the planning takes longer than if you are having standard external beam radiotherapy.
Just had my first session. Managed to break the machine 😳 It apparently had a "technical issue" in the middle, so one of the girls came out to chat with me whilst I lay there. They said that my breath holding at the beginning was really good but towards the end I was struggling, I said it was probably due to it being freezing in there, apparently the machine needs it really cold, however holding your breath whilst shivering doesn't really work. Tomorrow I'm wearing thicker trousers n thick socks, at least the bottom half will be warmer.
I asked about skin issues, as over the last couple of weeks my eczema has flared up, thanks chemo, and I have a lovely patch in the armpit which is being treated. They said to just carry on with my normal moisturiser and they will check daily.
Whole team were lovely which makes the whole thing easier to deal with.
Congratulations to those of you are finishing this week.
Congratulations Rach on finishing at last - hope you enjoy well earned break.
You should find that as much as possible they will book the rad sessions for a time which is suitable to you, as they ask you what time of the day would be better for you, just let them know about your childcare arrangements. I wanted to have mine around 1pm on MOn-Wed because I worked and was half way to the hospital rather than have to go home and out again, they very much were able to assist me and then on the other days I just fitted in with them.
After the first planning appointment, which takes up to 2 hours, the actual zapping sessions took 15 minutes.
(and that included time for me to get undressed and dressed) - so very quick!!
Hope that helps.