Caren, burping is a lot less unpleasant than the other end - I found the chemo farts were completely disgusting and could clear a room in seconds! Must find the thread called "WIND!!!!!!", that'll have you creased up with laughter.
Hope everyone's se's are easing, I feel fine today, apart from burping all the time! Is that just me? Some of them (when I'm on my own) are quite impressive!
Carolyn, I'm really pleased that you changed your appointment, it'll be lovely to meet you both!
I'm also going to the wig shop tomorrow, I did finally get my referral letter, my appointment is at 2. I haven't tried the scarf tying again yet, but thanks for the advice CM, it is really helpful.
Have a lovely weekend everyone!
Fingers crossed all goes well Mollie and you join us this month.
Well without sounding like a stalker Joan I changed my appt so will see doc 11.15 on 18th. Now remember red carnation and hopefully Caren will do the same. My canula sight a little tender today but that's probably more to do with three attempts more than anything.
Meant to say welcome to Gabby I'm glad I can keep everyone posted, think it's because too much time on my hands, not working, and no small children to care for so it's just me, my knitting and the iPad! God hope knitting doesn't make me sound old, I'm actually knitting dolls in the middle of a fireman for a friends god son at the moment having comp,eyed a penguin and a ballerina for another friends baby.
Strangely getting quite excited about wig appointment tomorrow, and have contacted BCN to find out about Headstrong so all systems go.
Well off to hunt some lunch but not sure what I fancy, of course apart from more water, fruit and dates for possible constipation, oh the joys!
Love to all
Debbie, fingers crossed for you that the seroma clears up.
Thanks Carolyn re steroid advice, that's what I will do.
Another tip I got from my chemo nurse yesterday, if you have had your treat via canula into back of hand, rub your forearm with ibuprofen gel for a few days after the treat as you will have a sore arm but hopefully the gel will make it easier. I have been doing so since yesterday when I got home and nothing to report as yet!
Well i finally have my date 22nd march as long as my seroma has cleared up.Ishould have started 5th but consultant wants the seroma healed, we can but hope.Hope all you ladies that have started this week are ok and not having to many ses.
Ihave gor my wig appointment at 1.30 today so that should be itresting.
Hugs gentley debbie xx
Thanks for the scarf advice CM I did try a longer pashmina scarf today and tried your suggestion and much better thanks. Definitely need to do the height at side or top of head look.
Thanks Kitcat the dashes to the loo have eased a little but I'll need to remember to keep drinking plenty of water today.
I'm actually feeling ok now a little light headed and tired but nausea not too bad, hopefully the tablets are working.
Hope others are feeling good today
Love to all
First night went ok for me, except trips to the loo! Hope everyone else is ok. I feel ok really, I have gritty eyes and quite a high colour, but nothing much other than that. I have just taken my tablets and hope to go out for a walk later on.
Hi KC, sorry you too are not feeling great, but hope its all manageable. Do you have another lot of steroids to take later on? I only took my first lot at about 8 this morning, so was wondering what time to take my second lot. Guess it should be 8 tonight, but I dont want to be up all night! I have just re-read Kellc who says not to take them after 4, so I guess there is my answer! Sorry to hear about your infection Kellc, glad you are better and feel able to go to work on Monday.
Good luck to anyone starting today!
Hugs and xxx
I am in the chemo thread for feb and have just had my second this week.
I take my steroids first thing then no later tham 4 as I was told if you take them later on the night it can affect your sleep
I am also taking E & C and the side effects were ok just like having a slight hangover and a sore throat.
On my third week I developed a cheast infection and cellulitus in my boob and spent 12 days in hospital on antiobiotics which delayed my chemo for a week but I am ok now and planning to go to work on Monday
At my hospital you can get free car parking by getting a chitty from the unit and then presenting it with your ticket at the front desk where they validate the ticket.
I sympathise though as nobody mentioned this to me and I must have spent about £20 before I found out. Worth asking.
Had my first epirubicin and cyclophosphamide yesterday and fine so far although I don't feel great and have woken vey early possibly due to the meds I took last night to top me up.
The procedure was fine and the nurse lovely. I took a friend for valuable moral support. I was told to drink plenty and by the time I went to bed my urine was pale as normal but I am going to drink the same 2litres again today and tomorrow as I was told it would help for the first three days.
Didn't have any reaction from the steroid going in and don't have any other symptoms yet. Had a good meal last night and the food tasted better than normal.
Just going to see what time I should start today's meds. It struck me that there doesn't seem to be any advice about how long to leave between doses. Took my last ones at 9pm and now it's 5.15 so I guess eight hours is a decent interval.
Good luck to everyone today and hope nobody is suffering unacceptable problems.
Carolyn, I'm with you on the loo thing! And if you're having FEC, one of them does irritate the bladder (think it's the C) so don't worry, the real urgency should wear off a bit fairly soon.
For headgear, try a long scarf rather than a square one. Put it on your head about two thirds of the way along. Twist both ends, and wrap the longer one around the back of your head and up over the top and round to meet the shorter end, then tie in a knot to one side. I might not have explained it very well, but once you get the hang of it you can do it in seconds. Take a look at the Suburban Turban website for instructions, and also for some very pretty (if a bit pricy) hats that you might like.
Hi ladies a might finally meet You Joan my next appt is 2 15 so looking good. Had my steroids before treatment so don't need another until tomorrow morning. Had some Dom Perignon ( as you rightly said god fancy giving it the name of a champagne!! I think when it's all over we should get some of the real stuff free on nhs:)
Doc appt 9 45 for me so looks like you two could meet maybe I'll see if I can change mine to sync then we can all go for coffee after.
Feeling ok at the moment just a little spaced and god I wish I had a downstairs loo I'm never the best of people for toilet anyway I'm one of those people who go before going anywhere and as soon as I get there.
Agree about the scarfs though they just don't look right on me think I need something with a bit of height so I'll need plenty of practice I need to ring Headstrong or Jasmin.
Here's hoping we all have a trouble free night.
Love to all
Hi Gabby and welcome!
Good luck at your onc appointment next week, hope you get your dates sorted out. I have found that the anticipation was worse than the procedure so try not to worry too much.
Yes, I think you are right about the steroid. I had thought that I was lucky to have my appt in the morning. I am glad that you are sounding a bit better now and hope that continues. Yes, I will wear my red carnation on 19th! Ha ha!!
I also have my wig appt on Saaturday (3.30) but haven't booked Jasmine yet as I have a headstrong appt in a couple of weeks time.
Hope everyone is doing well!
Hugs to all
Glad to hear that you're both doing well - I think the main problem for me was that I had steroids so late (3.45), and the nurse had warned me that I might not sleep well, so hope you both get a good nights sleep.1
My appointment with the Dr is at 11.20 on 19th - wear your carnation!! What time is yours Carolyn? Perhaps we could all meet up?
I've also got my wig appointment on Saturday, and appointment with Jasmin on Monday. Will be pleased to get those sorted out as I've had a practice with the scarfes I've got, and can't imagine going out in public with them on!!
Good luck nyone else starting, and have a se free night everyone who's started already.
Love and hugs
Got my letter today to see Oncologist next wednesday, and then I presume a date for starting.
I have been reading all your posts for just 2 days now but already I feel calmer.
Carolyn posting the way you have all through is amazing and hope it is doing you as much good as it is for us!
CM thank you for popping in for support, thats invaluable.
I dont know if I will actually be in the 'March' lot of intakes but I hope I wont have to wait too long.
God bless you all and KEEP BLOGGING!
Really glad to read your post, you too have survived your first one, just like we all will.
I have never drunk so much water, ginger beer, green tea in my life! Its all good though and would rather be trotting to the loo than feel really rough. I had some Dom Perignon around 3ish and will take some more soon. I was feeling quite nauseous but that has passed for the time being. Like Caren, I also have 6 days of injections starting on day 4, which my OH has volunteered to do. Should be interesting!!
Yes, I have doc on 19th (11.40) and 2nd chemo on 22nd (1.30). Caren, what date is your next treat? Aren't you on dose intensive?
I hope all the ladies who have started have a SE-free night, and to those starting tomorrow, all the best, its really fine and you will soon have one under your belt.
Be strong marvellous March ladies!
Hugs and xx
Well home now and feeling fine. Luckily don't need injection yet. So glad you got seen today Joan, and like you it was quick got seen about 15 minutes early so was out the door by just gone half three. Have to remember to take tablets now.
glad you're feeling a little better Caren. Alls good at the moment.
Joan is your next appt 22nd? I also have doc on 19th maybe one of these will co ordinate with tines.
Well more water beckons, which results in lovely pink wee!!
Love to all
Raechi, so pleased to hear your news.
Carolyn, sorry about the cannula problems, did you have to sit with your arm in a bucket of warm water before they tried? Hope you don't have to have the injections (mine are Pilgrastim?) although I'm sure it won't be as bad as it sounds. I still feel slightly spaced out and tired, but on the whole not as bad as I feared!
Joan, so glad you've got the dentist sorted, he sounds lovely!
Love and hugs to you all.
Well, I am glad to report that my tooth has been fixed and my chemo has happened! I had a sleepless night worrying that they may cancel the chemo. Went to the dentist first thing and expleained everything. My dentist is lovely, he saw me and sorted me out without an injection, so I am hoping it lasts the course. Embarrasingly I shed a few tears in there, but its all been a bit much to cope with. He did tell me though that if I need treatment while having chemo, yes they can do it but they just have to plan and I would have anti biotics. So if anyone else has these problems, they are solveable. He was also so lovely, he didn't charge me a penny!!
Got to the hospital, the nurses were lovely (despite me blubbing again!). I told them the tooth story in case they thought I was over reacting (which I am sure they didn't and I am sure I am not the first to do that!). My nurse went and made me a cup of tea, then I had the various drugs without further incident. So, I have been home a couple of hours, had some lunch (hadnt eaten much last night or this morning due to the tooth) and been sitting in the garden. I do feel slightly nauseous now so will go and have some meds in a minute.
CM, thanks again for your lovely post, very informative, much appreciated.
Caren, sorry you had a rough night, hope you have felt better today.
Hi Clare, I can totally agree with you that the actual procedure is absolutely fine. The build up is worse really, and just that being 'in limbo' feeling! Glad you got on ok, hope you have had a good day today.
Rae, glad your results were good! That's a couple of things you dont have to worry about.
Carolyn, hope you got on as well as I did this morning. Did you find the warm chair? Sorry I missed you, I was home soon after 1pm. Maybe we will overlap another time!
Well, I am off to put my feet up, drink water and eat ginger nuts!
Hugs to all
Well sitting here having chemo and at the moment not too bad, well apart from 3 attempts to get canula in, looks like about cycle 3 I'll have to have line in. Bit of a shock when given anti sickness tablets 5 altogether.
Great news about tests Rae they've gone to check if I'll have to do injections yuck!!
Missing hearing from you Joan Thursday is a reasonably quiet day here at the suite apparently so hope you get back on track soon that's if you havnt already been done.
Hope everyone else is well
Love Carolyn xxx
Sending hugs to all the ladies who have started chemo too. Xxx
Re injections - I have been told I will need to inject myself too. Something called gcsf if I remember correctly. It will be daily. I will check with my nurse.
On a more positive note, the biopsy in my right boob came back clear today. Plus an X-ray on my chest ( they were worried about complications after the biopsy) came back clear .
Wig referral tuesday, taking my mum with me. I think I will need some advice on this one!
Love to all.
Well breakfast done and now sitting nursing a 2l bottle of water in readiness for this afternoon. Feel slightly nervous now but I'll be fine once I'm actually at the hospital.
Caren so sorry to hear you were sick, but I'll take advice from others and remember to take anti sickness in plenty of time.
Thank you Carmy and others for your virtual hugs it's really helping.
Sound advise from waitingtoo about wig styles, I've already got a nice tousled and flicked image in my mind.
Here's hoping your sitting keeping my seat warm Joan having had your tooth fixed in time.
Love to all, better go and drink more water and of course I'll keep you posted on se's.
Clare_N So sorry to hear you had a difficult reaction. Sweetie I send you a gentle hug. Breath deeply and breath out all the horribleness that has happened to you. Breath out through your mouth, relaxing the jaw takes pressure off your skull. Hang in there.
Twinky - I hope you are ok after your first chemo, what a mountain we’ve climbed, just to get to this point. Big ‘pats on the back’, all round.
GeorgieB – I arrived at the clinic yesterday and after hugging me (which was a nice) the big bosomed nurse said, ‘ok I’ve been doing this for years, so you have to go and get your hair cut short and messy with layers – this week. Then you get a wig cut just like that. Not a smooth wig which looks really obvious like a mad dressed up, but one that’s messy with flicks here and there and is a similar colour to your own. See if this info works for you, remembering that we are all different, after all.
Another thing I plan to do on Sunday 18th March which is about the time the hair really starts to fall, is have 1-2 close friends over for an afternoon barbi in the garden with my kids (5yrs and almost 3yrs). We will shave my head then and hopefully for me and for the kids it will be ‘normalized’. This way we all go through it together and I reduce the shock factor. I’ll let you al know if it goes to plan.
Julianna (scared of Chemo) thanks for your support. In fact, yours has been one of the threads in the Feb forum which gave me comfort so thanks you for that. I only hope I don’t need to start chemo every leap year but I certainly marks the day as special. Hugs.
HI ALL, especially PatChi who goes for her treatment today. Read !!!
Had 1st Chemo yesterday ABSOLUTLEY FINE, VERY DOABLE !!!!!!!!
The details: drank loads of water the day before on the advice of the Dr.
Arrived at clinic 4pm; nurse hugged me and gave me a talking to about cutting my shoulder length hair and keeping my normal life going. Dr arrived and said ‘can we get this show on the road, I’ve a dinner appointment tonight ☺’ They flushed my portacath (in my chest) then added anti-nausea (I asked for the max) then two different vials of the chemo, then flushed the tubes again including a coagulant. 5 little bottles in all. You don’t feel anything, no nausea, no racing heartbeat, nada. It helped me to breath deeply and exhale my tensions, push them out of your body and letting my shoulders drop. In the end the anxiety was very very little and self induced because the chemicals were not having ANY side effect. In 1.5 hours I was done.
Then they gave me a list of appointments, when I need to get a wee injection in my leg (around day 8-10) when the while blood cells will be a bit low). We left and stopped at the pharmacy so now I’ve got a ‘vanity case’ of meds for every eventuality. These are everyday things like Imodium for the runs, senokot for constipation, parecetamol for fever of cold symptoms ! So’ in the coming days I’m anticipating a big doze of the flu and we’ve all done that, right ! For today, I feel nothing except elation – I did it, I overcame a huge big fear. One last thing. I asked for a mild sleeping pill for the night before and for last night. This worked very well and I won’t need it tonight. So ASK for WHAT you NEED. We’re all grown ups here.
Ladies, I’m here for you, as I sense you will be here for me too.
Sorry you had a bad night....and yes you guessed it - need to take those tablets before you start to feel sick! My chemo finished just before 12 and I started feeling like I'd been pumped full of toxic stuff by four but had already started on my Dom perignon at 2:30 & had a second dose at 6 which just seemed to save me in time! If I hadn't then I think I would have been sick too. Grazing/snacking is the way to go rather than big meals ( my lunch was too big, learnt my lesson there) plus it leaves more room for fluids. Had an apple yesterday evening which was lovely & refreshing ( ate it with a knife so had lots of thin slices whilst watching Eggheads on BBC 2). Hubby is just making me some breakfast. Got to go to the hospital for my injection today. They said next cycle I can do it myself to save the trip. Would have loved to stay in bed this morning!
Hope my suggestions help those about to start too as they're hot off the press so to speak! I was very grateful for the big CM post. This treatment is doable... Just got to be kind to yourself on the bad days.
Hi Carolyn -I heard we can get free car parking whilst going through chemo? I have my oncology appt tomorrow so will find out. I got some scarves from annabandana and they are cheap and the nicest ones so far. I know I will have to get a wig - especially as my daughter is getting married in October and I don't want to look like a shorn sheep! But I am dreading it as I hate anything on my head!
Love to anyone having treatment today, I just want to start and get it over with as I feel I am in limbo, getting over mastectomy op and ready for next stagE.
I haven't been around for some days but I want to send you all Massive Vibes of Support and love! All those of you starting today, I'm totally with you in mind! We can fight this month together! Us, the Marvellous March Ladies, can surely do this. 🙂
Well I had a fairly hoorible night, but feeling a bit better this morning. Started to feel quite nauseous at about 10, so took some of the anti-sickness meds and promptly threw up. I think if i had taken them a bit earlier when i kist felt slightly queasy i might have been ok. Was sick again a few hours later when I had to get up to go to the bathroom (I did drink lots of water!). I found if I didn't move AT ALL I was ok, so tried not to roll over! Also had heartburn which has gone now, bit of a headache, and painful arm/hand - but not the one they put the chemo in!
Good luck today, for all those starting, hope they can sort your tooth Joan.
Good luck Joan with the tooth - hope you don't have to delay your start. I did not think about not being able to have dentist treatments whilst on chemo - will have to move my next appointment!
Carolyn - have you checked with your doctor for a free prescription card. All cancer patients get free prescriptions and you are sent a card valid for 5 years.
CM many thanks for your input it certainly helps with the worries.
Only four more days to go then D day at 1400 - getting more nervous and tetchy as the day gets closer.
Sleep well everyone xx
Janeypaney, I've asked the mods to move your post to its own thread so you get lots of support. And you will.
Forgot to mention a couple of things.
Not everybody has injections but some do. They are usually to boost white blood cells and are either a single injection (Neulasta I think it's called) or a series of 5 or so. I escaped them until the last chemo, when I had to have them, and I did them myself. The instructions are very clear and your district nurse will show you how to the first time, but the needle is so very very fine that it really wasn't a problem and the thought of it was much worse than the doing. I would just "pinch an inch" (well, several), line up the needle and then look away while it went in, and then I had to look to see if it had because I couldn't feel it! Nothing like canulas and digging around for veins.
The other thing I should have mentioned was the real need to keep an eye on your temperature and report in if it gets high (over 38C just once or over 37.5 twice with an hour in between) as this can be the first sign of an infection. When your white blood cell count is low, typically for weeks 2 and 3, you don't have your usual ability to fight off infections so you MUST get in touch with your chemo ward immediately and not just hang around and wait to see what happens. Avoid paracetamol as a painkiller as well, as this can mask a high temperature. But don't worry, neutropenia is NOT the norm. Most people get through all cycles of chemo without any problems of this sort, but because it can be a serious and life-threatening condition we do need to keep an eye out (without panicking).
Most of what I've mentioned are just MY experiences. Yours may be different so don't judge your own experiences against those of just one person.
Good luck all, and I'll pop in from time to time to wish you all well, being a year later than me an' all.
Hi Jane, sorry to read your post. I'm amazed you had that your results given to you in a letter! Not surprising you dont understand them, its a lot to take in. Don't think that you are alone, as others have said, we are all here to help and support each other. Maybe you could ring your BCN and talk to her about it tomorrow?
Caren, glad to hear that you are doing ok. I have been thinking about you today. Hope those SE's are all small ones!
I am going to sit outside the dentist at 8.30 tomorrow morning in the hope that they can get me sorted out quick. My chemo appointment is 10.30. I will ring the unit first thing and tell them what has happened. In view of the fact that dental treatment is a no no during chemo, I can see them postponing mine till I have got the tooth sorted out. Fortunately its not painful (thank you God), but it definately needs doing. Its just such a pain if they cancel the chemo. You get all prepared mentally for it after feeling in limbo for a while, then have to go through the whole lot again! Hey ho! Just a good thing this didn't happen tomorrow after my first treat, I would be panicking then! I will let you know the outcome, but, Carolyn, I may not be able to meet you under the clock while wearing my red carnation tomorrow! If that is the case, I will wish you all the best for your treat now!!!
Love to all
Really glad it all went well Caren, although not sure about the injections, is that usual nothing was said to me today (yikes). The one thing I thought about is the bloody car parking, I'm thinking of getting the quarterly one it cost me £4.30 today and I was only there 2 hours!
Hope the tooth doesn't play up Joan, so as well as looking for the strange person under the clock carrying a red carnation I can now look for a broken tooth smile (that'll help as in a few weeks we won't even be able to recognise by hair styles!!). :))
Janeypaney have a look at starting a new thread it's not difficult I managed for this one and I hate computers! You'll find it really helpful and meet loads of new friends who you can share with. You'll get through this.
I hope the seroma drains for you Mollie and you can finally get on the road to the next step. I know what you mean about all go. I joked with work colleagues they won't recognise me in September with perfect hair courtesy
of a wig, lovely long nails when I get them re done, perfect make up thanks to LGFB and then a nice pert pair of boobs, well eventually when I get my right one level with my left although at the moment the thought of more
hospital visits is yuck!!
Hope you're ok from today as well Twinky. Remember drink, drink, drink,
Love to all
Well just had my first FEC, and everything went very smoothly (apart from 1 hour wait). Have come home with loads of drugs and injections which I have to have once a day for a week, starting on Saturday, I've said I'll do it myself - I hope I can! I'll let you know on Saturday.
The nurses were all lovely, and it really wasn't a bad experience at all - the only discomfort was a cold arm, and they gave me a heat pad, which I did need by the time the last lot was going in.
I now feel fine, just have a fuzzy head. I'm waiting for more SE's and will report back...
Janey I'm so sorry about your news today. To start a new post go to Newly diagnosed with breast cancer on the left under Diagnosis, then click on post a new topic at the top right. Try not to worry, I'm sure we've all had that feeling of total panoc, but it does become much easier once you know what the treatment will be.
Joan so sorry about your tooth, I hope you can get it sorted out quickly and you haven't got toothache?
Good luck tomorrow Carolyn, Joan and anyone else who needs it!
hi im trying to write a new thread not sure how, my question is that ive had results today via mail lobular grade3 9cm vascular invasion negative 5 out of 15 nodes affected with extra capsular spread er+ her2- help i dont understand im so scared jane xxx
Bugger! Dont believe it! Just eating pizza for tea and half my tooth fell out! Firt=st chemo at 10.30am tomorrow! Disaster!
CM, thank you so much for your lovely post! Very open and honest and put things into perspective for me a bit. Glad you seem to be getting on well. I have my notebook to hand and my glass of water by my side!
Twinky, Clare and Caren I hope everything has gone well for you today. Sorry if I have forgotten anyone, it's hard to keep track! Maybe we need a spreadsheet!!!!! Twinky, just saw your post, glad you are feeling ok so far!
Lydia, really glad you had such good news from your oncologist. Remember, glass half full, not half empty! I am sure you have made the right decision for you re the chemo. Best to zap it all now!
Carolyn, glad you got your wig appointment sorted out. I will be looking out for you at 1.30 tomorrow. Maybe you can have my chair, I will keep it warm for you! I guess maybe you have your anti-sickess drugs then wait for a while for them to kick in before having the chemo. Is that right? It always seems very busy up there! Would that have been the hour's wait Caren had?
I had my prosthesis appointment today. Its so nice to have another 'realistic' boob! Not wearing it yet as I need to get a new bra. My size has changed since surgery. So I am bra shopping on the internet this evening as the Amoema lady had run out of my size. Something I thought about, as the prosthesis seems fairly heavy, I wondered if you have to remove it when they weigh youfor chemo? Dont want more treat then I need!!
I am also going for a reflexology session this evening, thought it might help!
Another tip I have picked up, eat a banana with your anit sickness meds.
Have a good evening ladies and good luck to all who are starting tomorrow
Hugs and xxxx
twinky hope all went as well as you hoped today have been thinking of you.I start my chemo 22march as still have this seroma which seems to be getting bigger not smaller.Got my wigg appointment on friday and my prothesis fitting next friday its all go isn't it.
Good luck carolyn for tomorrow hope all goes well.
Hope everyone else is ok debbie x
EB Hippo the nurse gave me a referral slip which I then took to another department and now have referral letter and appointment booked for Saturday, along with cheque book ready for nhs prescription charge, although I keep telling OH it might cost more than that.. Hope that helps sorry I can't remember what hospital you were at. The nurse just went over the lovely possible side effects and did MRSA swabs and took blood. Saw suite and met a few nurses that's all really. At least I know what to expect tomorrow.
Glad a few more things have been sorted for you Lydia and you'll be continuing on this thread.
Spoke to Caren earlier and poor thing had an hours wait, she's done by now. Might see you tomorrow Joan if the delays are always like this.
Love to all
Congratulations for opting for the chemo. Will give you peace of mind, zapping whatever was trying to escape! You'll be starting on my birthday. I shall keep you updated with my progress as I'm starting with the same as you. Feeling ok so far. Am aware I've had a side of something unpleasant but not feeling too bad considering! I will keep religiously taking the tablets to avoid any unnecessary sickness.
Been to see the oncologist today and it wasn't as bad as I feared. She said it was a moderate cancer that was caught early and the prognosis was "quite good" which I panicked about but my husband said i've taken it the wrong way - I want a very good not quite good!
She actually said I was borderline for chemotherapy as it was a small tumour, grade 2 with only a micro met on one lymph node, but I've decided to go ahead with it, not sure if that's madness or not but hopefully it will give me some peace of mind that they've got it all.
I'm having 6 x FEC, I have my wig appointment next week and all being well looks like i'll be starting chemo on the 12th March, which is sooner than I thought but sooner I start, sooner I finish.
Love and hugs to all starting today and wishing you few SE's.
Love Lydia x
Carolyn, did you have to ask for referal letter, I went and got my wig sorted on my own but if there is a chance of a referal letter might look at a second option in a shorter style.
Tomorrow is just a look at the Chemo Suite, having my bloods taken at the Drs in the morning as I have to renew my sick note. Do they carry out any other testing while they have me in their clutches.
Sending you a hug xxx
Well I've been for pre visit which actually felt surreal. I did warn them there might be a few problems taking blood as my veins are quite deep, and hey presto took two attempts for blood, so possibility I'll need a hic line ( if that's what it's called).
Got my referral letter for wig so booked appointment for 11am Saturday, yikes it really is happening isn't it.
Thanks for all the advice CM it's always helpful to know what might happen.
Good luck to everyone else I'm off to start drinking lots of water ( and with my bladder lots of trips to loo as well).
Gabbylamb - I am in Leicester, had op at Glenfield and now about to start Chemo at LRI. Go to look at Chemo Suite tomorrow and think start my cocktails next week. Get in touch if there is anything I may be able to help you with.
CM - Thanks for all the really interesting info, I feel a little calmer now, may be it is do-able after all, you put me just that little bit at ease.
DebH - not heard so just hoping that things arent too bad for you - my thought are with you.
Love and wishes to all who are making this special journey together - sending you all a big hug xxx
Good luck to all having chemo, I will be thinking of you today
. I still have no exact date for mine til we see how the sentinel node biopsy heals. Will definitely be in march though.
CM thanks for your post. It's put my mind at rest a bit. I have been reading to many horror stories I think. My little brain goes in to over drive at times.
Good luck Twinky and Clare, I'll be joining you later - mine is at 2.00.
CM thanks so much for all the useful information - I find it really useful, and reassuring, and I'm drinking more water as I type!
Debh, hope you're ok?
Carolyn, hope your appointment goes well this morning. I might be joining you and Joan for wig shopping on Saturday! (depending on se's) but need to pick up referral before I go for juicing. My daughter wants to come, but I'm not sure she's going to have any sensible suggestions!
Love and hugs to you all, I plan on reporting back before you go, but just in case, good luck Carolyn, Joan, and hopefully KC for tomorrow.
Thanks for your post as I march off into chemo land today ( actually...timidly crawling is a better description...lol). Just having some breakfast & so e painkillers before I go after yesterday's surgery.
Deep breath....everything will be ok...CM said it would...
As March 2012 looms closer, I want to send my very best wishes from a March 2011 chemo survivor. ~I'll tell you a bit in case you're interested, though of course your own experiences may well be different.
I had 6 x FEC, after a WLE and a re-excision to get clear margins.
Before cancer I had long hair that I wore in a plait, but when I found out I was going to need chemo I had a short haircut to "get used" to being without my plait. I have to say I hated the short haircut, probably because I knew why I'd had it cut, but it's good to see that some of you have liked your new shorter hair.
About 2 weeks after my first chemo my hair started coming out in handfuls, so I got my OH to set to it with the clippers. I had asked him to get rid of it completely but he didn't want to, so after he'd done his bit, I shaved off the rest in the shower. (That was after a bit of a disaster with the only shaving thingy I had in the house - a "personal shaver" that had been in a basket of cosmetics I won in a school fair raffle!) so to avoid the reverse mohican because I'd shaved a stripe in my convict hairdo, it all had to come off. It took a while the first time, but I felt better for doing it, as I was the one in control of when.
Not everybody wants to shave their hair off. I know several people who just let what was going to fall out do its stuff and then hung on to whatever stayed. But for me, it was the right thing to shave it all off to the scalp because of the prickly "pulling the ponytail" feeling. After that I shaved it fairly often in the shower, as there were still odd tufts that were still growing, and I felt it was tidier to do the bowling ball impression than the worn out toothbrush impression. I didn't bother with a wig and went commando, or wore a Buff, or a LONG scarf rather than a square one. Most of the time commando.
My first FEC was totally terrifying, because of course you don't know how YOU are going to respond. I think the panic and terror made the nausea worse, but I was puking uncontrollably that first time and ended up back in hospital that night. THIS WAS NOT NORMAL, so if you're feeling really really bad, phone your unit for advice straight away, rather than sticking it out until morning. They may suggest you take some of your meds even if you're not due to take them, so it's well worth speaking to them straight away. THERE ARE NO PRIZES FOR MARTYRDOM, so if you're suffering, ask for help. My onc changed my anti-sickness meds to Emend for the next 5 cycles and that made the world of difference. It did send me to sleep a bit, even with steroids, but that was bearable because I didn't throw up at all after that first dose. If I was tired, I just slept and the housework backed up. But the house didn't fall down, the kids still got to school, and nobody starved.
The main side-effect I had was exhaustion and needing to sleep, though on one FEC when the nurse put it in really quickly, I did get "chemo brain", which was very weird. A bit like being completely ratted without having had a drink.
I tried to get out for a walk every day, which I think helped. OH had had a serious op the week before my first so wasn't allowed to drive, so I had to take the dog out, and I felt better for it. It also allowed me to expose my white scalp to a bit of sunshine (without suncream, I confess) so that it started to blend in with the colour of my face fairly quickly. For the sunshine, little and often is better than cremating your scalp in one overdose of sunshine.
I had a portacath fitted before my first chemo, and was very glad of that. Because I also have Herceptin I didn't want a PICC or Hickman line for the guts of 18 months, and for me that was the right decision even if it does mean an extra scar on my chest.
I suggest that you DON'T eat your favourite food the first day or two of your first cycle, as you may well find that you just can't stand the thought of that lovely thing after it's all over. Same goes for favourite perfumes and other smellies. You don't want lovely things to remind you of chemo after it's all over, so save them as treats for June/July when you've done the tough stuff.
Drink LOTS of water, particularly the first couple of days, but also for a few days beforehand so you're well hydrated. If you don't have a line, being nicely hydrated makes it much easier to get a canula in, and it helps to flush out the chemo. I found the slightly flavoured water you can get in Tesco more pleasant than either plain water or squash, so I made sure I had several bottles of that in the fridge, and generally carried one around with me.
I did have the occasional beer or glass of wine when I felt like it, but in general I didn't feel like it much. Some people go off certain tastes, and with TAX you can get a bit of a lardy taste in your mouth so I was told. With FEC I did get a "burnt mouth" sensation a couple of days after that lasted for about 10 days. That was unpleasant but not unbearable, and I usually had about a week each cycle where my mouth was ok. Not everybody gets that, but if you do it's "normal". You can get some mouthwash to protect your gums (corsodyl) and another that has a mild anaesthetic effect (chlorhexidine) so use them as you need.
Make sure you have your prescription charge exemption certificate so that you don't pay for prescriptions. You can get that from your GP, it's a very simple form that they need to stamp and can send off for you.
I found it very helpful to keep a note of what drugs I took at what time each day of the ati-sickness meds, and note how I was feeling. This is very helpful for your pre-chemo meeting so you can tell them exactly how you were feeling. As long as you remember to bring it to the meeting with you, of course... Also use your notebook to write down the instructions you get with your meds. I found it all very confusing having dexamethasone, ondansetron, domperidone, some mention of metaclopramide (but only had that while I was admitted) and other things. If you don't understand, ask again until you're clear on what you're supposed to take and when.
I felt ok to drive most of the time, but some people didn't feel quite right. Even when I was driving I took particular care as I knew I wasn't feeling 100%, and didn't do long journeys, partly because I was just too tired.
I worked on and off through chemo, but that very much depends on what sort of job you do and how you are feeling. There is no shame in just lying on the sofa in your PJs, and there is no need for guilt if you ARE able to work when others just don't feel up to it. Side-effects from treatment are very individual, though the chemo unit will try very hard to keep you from feeling or being sick.
Oh dear, CM has written another book... I hope my experiences are helpful, and I wish you lovely ladies all the very best for the next few months. And now I'm heading off to my pit.
Night night, sweet dreams, and you are in my thoughts.
Hi March girlies,
Popping in from January thread to wish you well ! It is a cliche and you've heard it all before and won't believe it until you have your first juice but! It is not as bad as you think it will be!
Waiting_too - starting on the 29th of February! Imagine that! It is a lucky day, did you know that? I've seen a chimney sweep when going for my first one and it DID bring me luck! All my SEs are annoying but bearable!
Wishing you all the same!