Just a couple of things I've tried
Slippery Elm Powder - available from most health food shops or online. Mixed into natural yoghurt it's not the most palatable thing but really helped with my nausea.
Lifemel Honey - expensive but massively boosts white blood cell reproduction so it helps your immune system.
Hope this helps
firebird I suffer from asthma & had 1st chemo session last friday, by monday I my breathing was bad and no amount of blue inhaler was going to work by tuesday my sister insisted on GP visit who gave me a 5 day course of steriods which kicked in today making breathing easier. I have had steriods for my asthma twice this year already due to chest infections and asked if chemo made the asthma worse. GP says its stress, just relax.....I am sure it was a reaction to the chemo but we will see at session 2.
take care all
However 'small' or 'insignificant' you think your symptoms are - get it checked out!
Better being safe than sorry.
Get some ibuprofen gel in case your arm is sore/slightly swollen after chemo. However, you must get doc/nurse to check it out if that happens as you may also need antibitiocs.
thanks Westside Sue. I don't know what I am worrying about anyway.......... what is a bit of restlessness and depression compared to what we are putting up with !!
The steroids just gave me loads of energy, and I felt very positive - positively bouncing through the hills in the snow just two days after first FEC! I was warned to take them in the morning as if you take them at night you are up all night - which isn't what you really want. My OH wanted me to stay on the steroids as I got so much housework done, homecooked meals etc....it's certainly not like that normally! I was only given steroids for 3 days after each chemo, so it's not too long.
Try not to worry, and if the steroids they put you on don't work for you, I'm sure they can change them.
Hi, very interesting thread - expert advice from those that have been/are there!
Have just been warned today that I may expect to have chemo. looking at some of these comments I see steroids mentioned. Do you always take steriods with chemo? This worries me a bit as I have had to take steriods a couple of times when I have had bad asthma attacks and they used to make me feel rotten, very depressed and crying and unable to settle, e.g. pacing up and down the hospital ward ( which is not easy when you can't breath anyway! ). Perhaps there are different types of steroids - anyone know?
my Mum has suggested taking coQ10 to help against chemo brain. I'll check with the onc and if OK will try and let you all know what happens.
This is my first post. I've just been looking at all these great tips, I begin my chemo tomorrow 6th May. I have found so much helpful info on this web site which has made me feel less anxious. Thanks to everyone who has contributed.
Thanks for tips. Nicky hope goes well for first treament on thursday I am in for my ist chemo the day after you friday 9th May. Now off to buy the " chemo kit".
Another feedback to everyone.
I've had the chemo haircut, checked out the wig, bought the 'chemo kit', had ECG, Bloods and Chemo chat all this week. Guess that means it's going to happen then!
I do feel better being prepared and my lovely daughters said my hair cut was better than the one I had - I wish they'd said before! A couple of 'tips' from the nurse I had my chat to, who has just been on a refresher chemo course. She says the thinking is that the cold cap is 80% effective - sorry if it wasn't for any of you though and it is also more effective if you dampen your hair beforehand. I will give this a go but I expect I will be thought of as mad but hey ho it's worth a try.
The tip about Poundland was really useful - it's definitely cheaper than Boots for some things but I will check out the thermometer in case it packs in at 37 degrees!
I start my 1st treatment, all being well with me and my bloods, next Thursday so I will probably start a different thread and keep this for the Tips or join in on any of those going for ladies who are at a similar stage in the treatment cycle.
Good luck to all of you and hope you can enjoy the Bank Holiday especially if you're recovering from any treatment.
I wonder if the moderators would consider making this thread sticky. It really is so useful.
I'm seeing my onc for the first time and then going shopping.
May have to start a new thread called pre chemo shopping list... now that should be a web page.
Lots of love Ladies
During my Tax I really suffered from watery, sore eyes. I tried several different types of eye drops for infected and sore eyes but no joy. My GP suggested I try Boots Hayfever Relief Drops which worked a treat!
I start 6 x FEC tomorrow and have to add that I have found this thread excellant and sooooooooooooo helpful. Many thanks to all who had added comments that are so valuable to us newbies, All stocked up on ginger everything, babies hairbrush,bowel stoppers and goers.
Goodluck to everyone
I went through 6 x FEC three years ago and kept a diary of side effects kinda helped (they did vary slightly on each cycle), only thing i would add is SLEEP lots! If people are visiting dont be polite and try and stay awake sleep!
Also Movical is the best thing to take for constipation, beware salt cravings (i had them due to sickness) makes you more constipated!
OOooo for ladies who do not want shave their hair off straight away ( i choose cold cap and not to cut it- kept 50 per cent)- Get a hair net for bedtime its less stressful then hoovering off loose hair (which will drive you nuts) in morning.
If you find you can stomach food thats generally bad for you mcdonalds etc is better than not eating at all -advice from my nurse and oncologist and worked a treat!
I found FEC quite easy to get through but put that down to being 28 at time and was super fit (joke i know) in the gym sense when i was dx!
Ive just started chemo again so had my 1st lot of Taxotere 10 days ago....touch wood ive had very little side effects bring on the next 5 😞
Good luck ladies!
Wow! What a lot of info - fantastic.
Many thanks to everyone who's put their top tips here and for Anita67 for bumping it up the list - I hadn't found it before. Anything I come across that may be different and helps I'll add later when the dreaded chemo starts.
Hoping not to need EVERYTHING on here 🙂 but at least I'll be prepared.
Thanks again and good luck to all of you going through this.
I'm so glad the thread has helped you, and I wish you all the very best for the remainder of your chemo. You'll be amazed at how quickly the time goes!
This thread provided me with so much desperately needed information, and I agree with Rjenr. I just thought you should know how incredibly helpful it has been to me and many like me. I think it's all about control. If we know quite a bit, we aren't ignorant about it all and we can pretend to be in control of what is happening to us! Many thanks to you for starting this invaluable thread. 1 chemo down, 7 to go!
I'm so pleased that this thread has got so many great top tips on it now. I had no idea how it would go when I first started it, just wanted to help chemo newbies like others helped me.
rjenr2 - I've been called many things in my time but 'icon' is not one of 'em, LOL!! Thank you so much for your lovely comments
Take care all,
One wee tip - have a heat pad at home. My vein went into spasm, and it was sore for some days afterwards. The microwaveable heat pad eased the cramps/feeling of swelling. Ibuprofen gel was also useful.
Best of luck to all with their chemo.
I am just bumping this up - if you have anything you would like to add on what has helped you either what you found by your self or something on here .... please post and hey Princess18/kelly.... you started this!!! I am so glad you di - i think you should be proud
Hello! What a lovely thread! I was shattered and came to bed to watch crap tv on my lap top, but got reading this instead and feel very comforted and have had a few laughs, so thank you.
I'm on my 3rd round of Epi before CMF. My main bug bear at the mo is runny eyes - they just stream every time i go outside - have taken to wearing shades which takes the edge off, but wondered if anyone had any top tips? Also wondering how anyone's found CMF compared to EPI? Have been a bit tired and spaced out for a week after E but no nausea.
Managed first yoga class since chemo last night and was pleased to keep my wig on throughout!
Love and strength to all,
Hi all, I have had an email from BCC saying a page from us based on this page would be a good idea to go on new website! Am dead chuffed for everyone who has put ideas and tips on here... keep them coming!!!
I bless princess18 aka kelly for starting the thread and I'm guessing she has moved on from chemo now because she ahsn't posted on thsi thread for a while - if anyone sees her on here tell her she is an icon!!!
I agree that this is an extremely useful thread. So much more insight here than the briefing session I had today with the Chemo nurse. I haven't started chemo yet but have already made a start on turning the key info in each of the tips into a Word document with exactly the same thought in mind as you Jennifer. Happy to forward it to you or to collaborate.
have contacted bcc re can we make an abstract from this and do a thing on web page... they are suggestign Vita mag but i think more people see the threads and stuff u read on site as info. I don't know - i just thought that pages of ideas from people who are doing this might help others because we are/have been doing it.... so people going throught chemo can say hey try pineapple when your mouth feels bad (i think we would have to miss out most herbal/homeopathic or give a huge warnign re checking with hosp).
If we want to make a page of info they will send me a proposal form. we can keep bumping the page up but we could make it shorter.
Another page idea would be what to take to hosp....
I'd like to follow top tips thru - best and most help thread i have read but what do you all think?
I think you can get Aloe Vera already mixed with juice but I suspect it's an expensive way of taking it. If diluting it with fruit juice, what concentration do you use? I haven't tasted it but it's on the (growing) shopping list...
Thanks for tips Kelly, I love smoothies and can't wait until soft fruit is in season here, I hate buying things like raspberries that have been flown in and never freeze enough to last all year! Luckily we like veg and soups too so I'll get some batches in the freezer during next week. I'm desperate to avoid constipation and all tips are welcome. Lyn xx
when I was on Epi I was warned that constipation could be a problem. Rather than take conventional meds for this I just massively upped my fruit intake (I hate veg!). I used to do a homemade smoothie every morning for the first few days after and I'm pleased to say I never suffered with constipation. I also drank a lot of water which is obviously important too.
Once I switched to the CMF it was quite the opposite! I was then warned that I may suffer with diarrhoea! My chemo unit gave me 'Loperamide' to take home after each session to take if required. Whereas on the Epi I ate a lot of fibre, on the CMF I ate very little fibre for the first few days and this really helped.
Hope that helps and good luck to you all (not that you'll need it of course!),