thanks RevCat I really must take heart in all the positive posting that have have received in response to my impending chemo. So great to hear your three years on from chemo I am sure once I get started I will be ok Gill x
Julie, both diarrhea and sore thorats are quite 'normal' side effects, so please don't panic. You can take immodium to help with the runs, and suck throat sweets such as strepsils for your throat (just beware the sharp edges). Most people find the first cycle the most scary as they have no idea what to expect, but after that it will settle down, promise. When you see you onc or nurse beofre next chemo, make sure you tell them about the side effects you have had and they can give you meds to help fix them. If you are really anxious, ring them - that's what they are there for.
Venice (Gill), the early days are utterly terrifying and the forums can so easily feed that, with even innocuous looking threads worrying us. Most pepole will get through chemo without ever getting a high temperature never mind an infection. Hospitals do tend to give us the heeby jeebies (sp?) as they list all that can happen, but once you get started and it ceases to be an unknown mystery, it does get easier to cope with.
I know it's easy for me to say this, nearly three years on from starting chemo, but it will soon be over and done with, and you'll be looking back amazed at how well you coped. Best wishes to all chemo starters psoting or lurking on this thread.
Afternoon Angels, as both a BC patient and a registered nurse I would go with the best tympanic (ear) thermometer you can afford, and agree with Lola check your temp at least 3 times a day. I was admitted Aftr 2nd chemo with neutropenia sepsis. Mainly my neutrophils that fight infections did not recover from the chemo, but was able to get to hospital and recovered within 3 days, so it's is really important. Also if you feel unwell and your temp is normal phone the chemo unit for advise. Don't won't to scare anyone but you do need to monitor yourself well.
good luck x
Agree with Lola - had 2 admissions while having chemo - depsite felling OK. Was told to ring for advice if 2 readings of 37.5 and to come in if a single reading of 38. Don't want to alarm you but better to be on the safe side and nip potential infections in the bud. I bought cheap Omron digital thermometer which was fine. Hope it all goes OK for you.
The advice is this. If it hits 37.5 check again an hour later. Keep checking. If it hits 38, ring in.
I am so sorry if my post has upset anyone, but it is important to be aware of how vulnerable we are to infection when we are on chemo. Our immunity is low, and one way of keeping an eye on things is to watch your temp. It can go up even if you feel well. My little episode frightened me to death, especially as it was on my first cycle. Happily, my oncologist gave me the Neulasta injection for all subsequent cycles, which boosts the white blood cells and helps prevent problems. You could ask about this.
hi juliemb hope you are doing ok an the whole and your sore throat and the runs settle down soon. Not got a start date yet will be mid August some posts are really doing the opposite of helping to be positive but maybe it is just me and getting very nervous and anxious love Gill
OH god all of this info is doing my head in and not even started chemo yet. Am so confused and scared stiff am on info overdrive am addicted to this forum yet some posts make me feel so down and negative will have to start weaning myself off some topics . Gill x
I feel I must reply to Gill because taking my temp at regular intervals may have saved me from serious illness. I did as advised by my chemo unit, I took mine 3 or 4 times a day, every day..
I was feeling well. Bright and breezy even. But took my temp as normal, and it had risen to over 37.5. It eventually went up to 38, I was still feeling well. I rang in and was told to get to the chemo unit ASAP. They took my bloods. My neutrophils were down to 0.1, a dangerous level. I was admitted immediately and put on IV antibiotics for 3 nights. My temp never did get any higher, and dropped to normal levels quite quickly, but the neuts stayed low. I was released when they rose to an acceptable level. I kept complaining because I still felt really well, and was told I was in fact seriously ill as Neutropenia can cause a serious downturn in minutes if not monitored correctly.
My chemo unit was somewhat different from others in that they advised NOT to take temperature daily, but only to do it as and when (i.e. IF) I felt feverish. So I didn't invest in an expensive in-ear thermometer (they are certainly more accurate), just had a bog-standard one to hand. Only felt feverish on one occasion (and my temperature was normal), so it gathered dust nicely. Good luck with your chemo. It's rotten, but you will get through it. x
I got one for a fiver from local chemist. I was advised by the nurses on my chemo unit to buy a digital one that goes under your tongue and not one that goes in the ear, but I can't remember the reason why now, sorry. But anyway yes a digital one that goes under the tongue can be bought from most chemist, I found it very accurate and it won'tbreak the bank lol! Xx
Hi Samjs,I'm the same as Weepixie.I was given a thermometer at the unit on my first chemo along with anti sickness meds.
I get my bloods done on a Monday at my local clinic.on the Tuesday I phone the unit to make sure my bloods are alright for my chemo on the wednesday,they ask me what se's I have had and any meds I need are there for me when I go for my chemo.wishing you all the best with your treatment Agnes x
Be aware that your body temperature naturally peaks at around 6pm each evening so check it then so you know what it is before your chemo starts. Then you will not panic if after a dose of chemo you feel hot and bothered and your temp is higher around that time. If your temp does rise do not take paracetamol straight away as this will artificially bring it down and it may then mask something more serious. Firstly, strip off and get some fresh air, check your temp again 20 mins later. If its still high call your chemo unit for advice. I, as an ex nurse, bought the Braun Thermoscan Thermometer. Its a bit more expensive but I have always found them to be accurate. Used them where I used to work.
At the unit where I had my chemo they give you a thermometer on the first visit so I would hold off buying one for now in case they prefer you to use one they supply. You could give them a call and check on this. A visit to the GP might be a good idea in preparation but again my oncologist was happy to dish out anything needed to counter SEs and my 'takeaway' was different every time I went for chemo according to what was needed.
I have the Braun ear thermometer. My GP recommended it as it is the one they all use. I bought it from Amazon at half the price of Boots. RevCat is 100% correct about core body temps. We all vary. Mine is normally in the mid 36's but it starts off lower in the mornings and rises by bedtime. You also have to be careful that if your ears have been covered by a hat, wig, or by lying down on it, you should wait 10 minutes.
I bought an ear one in Boots (expensive, but I htought it'd be kinder if my mouth got sore) but as Bendcitus says, you can use a bog standard one. A word to the wise - take a few readings before you start chemo to establish your own baseline - I have a lower than average core temperature, other people's is higher than average... it is not your thermometer being dodgy! A year or so back someone on here got very worried that she kept buying dodgy thermometers which read low when actually it was her natural temp.
Hope all goes well, and may your side effects be little ones.
I think the bog standard one from Boots does the job. If you get a chance go and see your gp and stock up on extra anti-sickness, stuff to counter constipation (which is a horrible se) and something for stomach pains as this can be a problem as well. I found that Lansoprozole worked well but others have also done well with another drug (begins Om and ends prole).