Well done to everyone else who has finished! I had my last session on Monday. Felt really flat and bleak. Low mood was something which started last week, along with feeling weepy. I think that is how the fatigue has shown itself with me - tired and emotional.
Anyway, that has lifted now and feeling much better. I think it was all just catching up with me. So much thinking time when you aren't at work. I have started a retrospective cancer diary to help me process stuff. Sounds more grim than it is - writing it up, including all the different appointments etc, brings home what I and all if you have been/are going through. And mine was only very early stage cancer, caught through screening programme. Anyway, seeing it written down brings home the reality of it all and makes me feel less of a fraud for not being at work right now.
My skin is very, very itchy and whole breast is very tender with little stabbing pains on occasion. All copeable with but I would say overall, more uncomfortable than post-surgery. My sense is that the reactions might have already peaked, but time will tell.
Good luck to everyone else still in the thick of it. Onwards!
Congratulations itsallgonetu, TW142 & anyone else that’s just finished. Hopefully we’ll all have healed (physically anyway )in a few weeks. Just have to remember to keep up the arm exercises ,usually the last thing I feel like doing.
Best wishes to all xx
Well done itsallgonetu! Congratulations!
Yes, finished today, no bell but had a good laugh with the radiographers and made one of them promise to make a recipe for my follow up appt from the cookery book I gave her by way of thank you for talking nonsense to me during the treatments to stop me freaking out. She's a hopeless cook apparently.
I too filled my days with at least one nice thing - coffee/ lunch or usually a nice walk. Skin is fine so far so keeping fingers crossed.
Celebrated today with a nice lunch with a friend and so glad I did or it would have been a huge anticlimax just coming home.
Good luck to others finishing or about to finish. The end is in sight. Now need to focus on mending the mind. Not quite so easy.
I also finished my treatments today and rang the bell! I posted last the day before I began.
I must say all those days of getting up so early wiped me out, had lots coffees etc with friends to keep me going but then was zonked
After 10 sessions started to get red spotty and sore, my nipple feels like it's being scraped with sharp glass when I catch it on my clothes. The boost site looks the worst.
Nothing has broken down yet but I think the team are expecting it to as they have given me lots of dressings and aquaform hydrogel. I used biaffine radiotherapy burn cream and aloe vera for itching, so did my best to avoid but it's a burning treatment so difficult to avoid.
The team suggested I try nipple shields(like for breast feeding) which mean I'm able to put a bra on for short periods, otherwise I am really most comfy topless! How embarrassing.
If anyone else has any tips I would certainly appreciate them.
will be keeping an eye on this thread but I suppose I have to move on to the first few weeks after active treatment is finished.
Good luck to all May radiotherapy patients.
Thanks , I did finish today but I came away feeling a bit flat, not sure why?Felt a bit emotional when the radiographer said “this is your last one” but was relieved that they were finally finished. There was hardly anyone to witness my bell ringing, just my partner & receptionist . Maybe you could have a photo leaving the unit instead of ringing a bell. I’ll be thinking of you tomorrow , so hope everything goes ok ,just think it’s the last one.
The paperwork states we have to watch for skin changes for up to 21 days. I’m very pink now & a bit sore so hope the changes are not too severe.
plan to have a couple of days relaxing & hopefully a good shopping spree toward the end of the week.
Best wishes for tomorrow & beyond xx
Thank you! Yes, I have arranged lunch with a friend and hubby and I are off to Cornwall for a long weekend on Friday so hoping the weather brightens up as it's not looking too clever at the moment.
I've also had a free acupuncture session today which I am hoping will alleviate some of the hormone I duced symptoms as well as promote general wellness. Really nice guy so am optimistic, though if you read his website you could be forgiven for thinking it is sheer quackery!! Still, if it works in China it must be worth a try!
Thanks again for the bells, really appreciate it. Perhaps we should set up a new thread for post RTin a week or so when this May group has caught up?
I’ve looked for a bell on internet but I’m not clever enough to cut and paste it on here but there are some in other threads. 🎉🛎🔔🔔🔔- so these for all those finished or about to finish.
I go on into next week for 2 more sessions because ‘my’ machine is being serviced on Friday but I can see a bit if light at the end of the tunnel.
It is also a huge help to hear how you are all doing for these few weeks after - I still really appreciate the hints and tips and support. It is a lonely journey otherwise.
I hope you get some celebration of some sort or a ‘reward’ for yourself TW142- hang on in there for the last one! 👍
livelifetothefull and your Mum - is it ok for you both?
Love and strength to everyone
So did you finally finish today??? I finish tomorrow, still have a wave of panic each time and can't wait for this episode to be over. Then it seems we wait for the skin eruption!
No bell here and complete surprise when I asked about it- and that's at a leading cancer hospital! So I think tomorrow will be an anticlimax.
I hope you have something joyous planned for the rest of the week and beyond!
Hi ladies. Sorry just catching up here. Did you manage to fine the thread ?
first few weeks after rads?
if you type in the search st the top of this page it should appear.
Glad those who have read it realise they are definitely not on there own and we have been there to. Have a good weekend. Bit quiet here after last weekend and my daughters wedding. Xx💓💓
My mum& I are on day 8 of 15 now. Both feeling ok- just a little tired- boob feels sensitive but not sore- yet. Using Aveeno cream am & aloe Vera pm.
I went on a leaving doo at work last night for a meal, felt a bit guilty being there as I have a sick note for the duration of radiotherapy. But I wanted to say bye to a dear friend & feel well enough to be out & about.
They have a bell here in Leeds and I’ve heard it rung a few times. It’s very emotional- everyone- staff, patients & relatives all stop what they are doing & clap & cheer- brings a tear to my eye. Probably be a blubbering wreck when me & my mum ring it.
Its a lovely group, it’s helpful reading what others are going through- not just the physical symptoms of breast cancer- but the emotional ones it leaves you with- that people who have not been through it may not appreciate.
Thanks ladies & Good luck with the rest of your treatments xx
sorry to hear your skin has broke down. Similar happened to me on day 14. Ring your rads team get their advice. My team were almost expecting my call!! Mine wasn’t to bad so just had to stop creaming and allow to heal and dry out a little. Once healed I went back with the cream and still do today 11 month on. Everything will be peaking now so keep check on the area including g your back. I had a lovely red patch on my back where rads had hit. Take care and have a good day x 💓
2 weeks after radio finished I have a glorious patch of 'sunburn' with some blisters. I though I'd got away with it!
Good Morning Everyone,
Will be 13/15 sessions today, should have been my 14th, but because of a cancellation
at my unit (tech problems) I'm behind. Just want to get them over and done with now. Can
identify with TW142, felt overcome with panic at one session last week which came completely
out of the blue.I had a sudden urge to jump off the table, but didn't, was praying for that session to end.
Best wishes to everyone having their rads today xx
Hi Gill 3105.
where is the thread you were talking about please? Can’t seem to find it.
If you type in the search box above this thread:
'First few weeks after ringing that bell'
You should find it
Thanks Annietravel for articulating my thoughts more clearly. Yes, frustrating that one can be sensible, rational and pragmatic and yet be completely floored by this experience. I sometimes feel I'm living in a parallel universe!
I'm gong out for tea tomorrow so at least have that to look forward to as I look up at the not very inspiring picture on the ceiling of the radiotherapy room! You'd think they could do better!
thank you Gill for showing the positive of side of life after - will look at your thread. TW142 - big hugs - wish we had treatment together and we could chat - maybe I'll chat to you in my head tomorrow while I'm holding on to the end of my session - then we can have a virtual coffee! I had a crumble with the radiotherapist at my review on Tuesday which helped. I also told the girls zapping me I was struggling and they talked me through. I have always considered I'm very sensible and rational but these 60 seconds every day do my head in.
This all shows we are all different, our journeys follow a pretty set route but then our bodies and minds behave differently, we come from every conceivable different life journey and who knows how we will each react. This is why you are all so special in sharing hints, tips and encouragement.
Bell rang at my hospital today- normally no one talks in the waiting area then when it rang everyone clapped and smiled!
hope tomorrow goes well. How are those who have finished - how does your skin feel?
TW142- I'm with you!!
Thank you Gill, I just read several posts and what a relief to hear others feeling the way I do. Just great, I'll read it all tomorrow but thank you for sharing.
Thanks Gill3105, will take a look at your thread!
12/15 tomorrow and have felt increasing panic at each session! Really can't explain it especially as I know the drill now but feel the panic rising during the second part of my very short treatment. Giving myself a good telling off is not working so well! Hey ho, at least only a few more of this ghastly experience to get through.
I have not heard a bell at my hospital and don't think there is one. I haven't felt like asking but might do tomorrow. I can imagine it must be either be cathartic, or an anticlimax!
Good luck all for the end of the week and it looks set to be a lovely weekend, down South at least!
hi ladies. It’s lovely to see a little
club growing with you lovelies. It really helps and helps each other as you all know what each other is going through and more importantly what each other is talking about and every little bit helps. I was part of a super group all going through rads together and still friends today and judging waiting on one more to have their first mammo then for the big meet and can’t wait!! Take a look at our thread as it might just help you ladies when you have completed your active treatment. It’s called those first few weeks after treatment is finished. Worth a read and I am sure it will help once you rads are complete. Will also make you smile. Hope your treatments are going well and you will all be ringing that bell before you know it. Have a great evening all
Happy to say I’ll be having session no. 12 of 15 today - ticking them off!
Boob is pink and a bit itchy, especially underneath and at he site of my surgery scar. But so far all bearable and I haven’t used the ice pack yet. The Panache gel underwired sports bras are also working out ok at the moment, although I feel the need to ‘hang loose’ after about 9pm when I’m confident I’m not going to see anyone other then husband!
Fatigue is a funny thing. I thought I wasn’t experiencing this until I realised that this is probably why I’ve been feeling generally fed-up and occasionally weepy. I’m really rubbish at this whole being ‘off sick’ thing. I see myself as a quite a healthy person, as in, I don’t really get ill. I feel quite irritated with the fact that some annoying little cancer should decide to take root in my body and cause such a nuisance! Never mind, great screening programme that found it - very grateful. And, I keep reminding myself this is all a moment in time and will be done and dusted soon 😀👍
Good luck to everyone else going through treatment xxx
Try M&S for post surgery bras lots of choice and THEY ARE VAT FREE for us....little surprise.
Also Aloe Vera Gelly is brilliant for rads, no burns or heat for me.
Hope it helps
I started my radiotherapy last week and had my sixth session today. So far just a bit of twingling going on. Great to read about everyone’s experiences here and to feel less alone.
I was in the Bravissimo shop searching for comfortable bras yesterday and wanted to pass on some info. from a lady I met there, for anyone who is suffering from the radiotherapy burning/heat - she suggested using one of the hot/cold pads nursing mothers can use when they have sore boobs/mastitis etc. They are shaped for breasts and they go in the freezer for two hours before you use them. I bought one yesterday from John Lewis on a ‘just in case’ basis! My younger sister had radiotherapy earlier this year and was very uncomfortable with the skin burning. She slathered on loads of different oils but I am a bit wary and hoping to just stick with the Q.V. cream they have given me.
Also, I’m struggling with finding wearable non-wired bras. I’m a 30 HH and it seems an impossible feat. I have just bought a Panache underwired (but covered in gel cushioning apparently!) sports bra mainly for the fact that it’s cups are completely seam free and it feels, at first wear, really comfortable but not sure how I will fare if my boob starts to heat up. I have bought it a size up, 32, to be a more relaxed fit. Does anybody else have this problem? If so, how are you managing? I can’t imagine going without a bra, partly because I think it would be massively uncomfortable but also I would be far too self-conscious!
Just finished 15 days of Radiotherapy.
I didn’t use the nurses recommended cream as full of paraffin and nasty toxins.
I used Aloe Vera (Forever Living Products) as recommended by a skin specialist.
No redness, patches, blistering and skin looks amazing and even wounds have healed well.
I used it 3 times a day, before and immediately after treatment.
Also left breast treated and anxiety during first 2 treatments, helped by Clatterbridge radiologist to explain the process and I was much better.
I really think they need to do a better job of practice sessions before treatment as the threads suggest we need more support before sessions begin! It would really help us.
Agreed, but as I've said before, it's not a wholly enjoyable process. However, the staff are generally very nice and patient and I have found asking them to talk me through when you're left alone in the room very helpful.
Just off for 9/15, just as my boob was getting used to the restful weekend!
The thought of the Radiotherapy is worse than it actually is I found. I am sure you are going to be fine and the staff will be reassuring. My treatment doesn’t seem to take as long as they originally said so hopefully yours won’t be the full half hour. It’s getting you in the right position that takes its time. I’m having the left side done and the supra clavicular node done as well. Xxx
Hi all, and I completely get those who are panicky.
I posted on here last month because I had cancelled rt appointments after worries about the process and side effects got to me. They have been rearranged to start tomorrow and I can feel the panic rising again. I have to have treatment to both sides and collarbone so each session with take about half an hour. I'm truly dreading the whole thing but cancelling again isn't an option. My gp prescribed temazepam to help - is it safe to take pre-treatment?
Hi all, and I completely get those who are panicky.
I posted on here last month because I had cancelled rt appointments after worries about the process and side effects got to me. They have been rearranged to start tomorrow and I can feel the panic rising again. I have to have treatment to both sides and collarbone so each session with take about half an hour. I'm truly dreading the whole thing but cancelling again isn't an option. My gp prescribed temazepam to
I’m self employed and have found it very difficult to go back to work. I’ve had 5/15 Rads now and am very tired. Glad of the 3 days off. As I deal with the public and do a lot of driving I’m not going back till after the rads. I wasn’t too good with the chemo so am being kind to myself.
I’m exactly same diagnosis as yourself and do feel lucky. Didn’t think that at the beginning . I have been off since February. Operation was end April. I mentally could not have coped with my job as I deal with public. I’m not going back till after radiotherapy. Maybe a month after to make sure I’m ready . In my job if you go back and are off again it counts as another absence. So no point just taking the 6 months and hopefully I’ll be ready to go back . But you have to do what’s right for you . No point in rushing back . Best wishes Jackie xx
Looking for a little advice / insight. I had a lumpectomy and sentinel lymph node removed at the beginning of May.
i’m very lucky as it was grade 2 and had not spread to lymph node. Next step is radiotherapy. My appointment with oncologist is mid July, which leaves me in a quandary. I’m a depute in a secondary school, so quite a demanding job and had planned to return to work after my treatment had finished. I have started Tamoxifen and still feel a little sore and tired. Part of me doesn’t want to go back until the treatment is complete, but part of me knows that I should be physically well enough in the next few weeks. My employer is very supportive and I would imagine will go with my wishes, I presume my GP would support this.
There are five more weeks until the end of term and I would imagine that the radiotherapy will take place in the school holidays. Given my role, I don’t think a phased return would be helpful.
Any insight would be appreciated.
Welcome to mac51 and Jac67, a lovely supportive club that none of us want to be members of but you are all wonderful.
Now 5/15 for me and glad of 3 days off. Just a little tingling or burning sensation and a bit of a heavy feeling. Must try the cold packs or peas, there are some fabulous tips here. I am tired- just woken from a two hour 'snooze', need to keep drinking which helps.
I know what you mean TW142 about panics and thank you so much for sharing this- you are not alone and neither am I now. I'm also finding this a bit tough. I thought I was coping well but suddenly felt what I can only assume was a slight panic grab me during the rays last week. Do you have to do the breath- holding which I think is because my tumour was left-sided? Any tips? I avoid counting in case I count wrong and let go before time. I look intently at the ceiling and try and make pictures!? Also focus on calm places. The staff are getting chattier though as we get to know each other.
Take care of yourselves, ladies, this part of our journey will end.
Seems we now have quite a club on this feed, though I'm sure it's one we'd rather not belong to!
I've now done 8/15 and jolly glad of the 3 day break. My boob is definitely pink and feels full and heavy and have resorted to using a packet of frozen peas. Bliss! So that's my top tip of the day. I recall another contributor suggested the hot/cold gel packs for nursing mothers which I bought but for me they weren't large enough as they don't really extend to the arm pit. Still it was worth a try and may well be useful to someone else. Peas a lot cheaper though!
I am beginning to dread the sessions though and sometimes have a flash of panic during my second burst but think that is the machine passing over my head which I find unsettling. I asked the radiography to talk me through last time. A small thing but made quite a difference to me.
Enjoy the bank holiday ladies!
glad to hear it’s going well . I’m going to be starting in Glasgow maybe end of June . Same as yourself tamoxifen. And a journey I didn’t expect. Best of luck with rest of treatment 😘xx
Its been great reading all your stories. I had my 4/19 session of RT yesterday (Glasgow). So far so good, the girls are all great and I've met so many lovely people. My Oncologist was called in at the beginning as my wound hadn't healed properly - surgery March 26. Thankfully she gave the go ahead, as it had already been postponed for the same reason.
I started Tamoxifen at the beginning of May. No side affects as yet from the medication or the RT.
Good luck to everyone...what a journey xx
Good luck to those finishing- enjoy the freedom from the daily trek to hospital. I bet it will be a bit strange.
Drummerswidow - hope it goes well for you and you get pleasant staff again today. My second one was very smooth except I got in a muddle with breath holding- practice will make perfect. This is probably only relevant for those with left sided radiotherapy?? Relieved to get my schedule at last so can plan a life around this.
Thanks, Gill, for advice about cream- I caught up with this thread in bed last night and realised I hadn't done the cream. Trying to drink as well.
Letrozole - I have been on for about 6 weeks after stopping HRT about 6 weeks before. Hard to say what symptoms were due to what just lots of hormone cartwheels. However all settled now and my only problem is bad sweats, I go very red as well, lasts a few minutes then back to normal. My hairdresser asked what was happening last week when 1 came in middle of haircut - he could feel the heat. I assured him it wasn't a 'swoon' for him! 😂 Aches eased now but some brain fog and a bit more clumsy but this could be all the emotional stuff or lack of oestrogen. I guess everyone is different though.
Badboob, Rosiepop, TW142, P67Anne.
Thanks for your good wishes. Good luck with the last Rads today!
I’m hoping that today will be just as good as yesterday. I know what you mean about getting through some book while you’re waiting.
I have started my Letrazole and am having some hot flushes and pains but not sure if that’s due to the Taxol I was having. I haven’t had a Dexa scan. Was told I would get one at some point!
Drummerswidow, I have had very variable experiences with different radiotherapists and can sympathise with yours. I think it’s such a conveyor belt process from their end that they forget that this is a big deal for all of us. Just the whole thing of the rest of your life fitting in around these sessions even. I didn’t get my schedule until my first appointment which made it very hard to plan anything else until that point. I feel I could have carried on working probably but it was impossible when I didn’t know when I needed to be there. Also the journey takes just under an hour on a good run but there only has to be a hold up on the unavoidable major trunk road and it takes two hours, so I allow for that every time. Getting into some good books though with all the sitting around 🙂
Badboob - just wanted to say that I started on Letrozole 5 weeks ago today and the only noticeable side effect for me so far is being a bit hotter and sweatier. I read a lot about the negative side effects beforehand and put myself right off but so far it hasn’t been too bad. I should say however, that I already had joint pain, hot flushes and occasional poor sleep so may be that’s why 🙄🤔 . The joint pains are associated with mega stiffness in my legs, particularly my knees (since the menopause - I’m 54) so this has been the kick up the backside I needed to enrol in a Pilates class which I’m starting when the radiotherapy is over and also planning to do more resistance training. I’m also making a conscious effort to walk more. (Had my baseline DEXA scan this morning which compared to the radiotherapy was a breeze!)
Good luck tomorrow, you lucky thing!
I'm already on Letrezole and have found it OK so far, though I would rather not be taking it of course. I am becoming more aware of hot flushes but nothing drastic so far. I was told most of any side effects would be in the first month or so, so I'm going with that and hoping there are no surprises further down the line. We'll see.
Congrats on completing your rads and have a nice life!
Glad you had a better experience today. It’s amazing how a little bit of kindness goes a very long way.
Hopefully we all have a relatively easy time for the rest of our rads.x
So pleased you had a better experience today Dummerswidow. Hopefully you will feel better about the rest of your zaps. It’s amazing what a smile and a little kindness does to sooth the troubled brow! 😘🤗. I had a lovely trainee today, she was so sweet and was very keen to do a good job. Her supervisor was very encouraging as well. She even apologised that her ruler was cold when she was measuring me up, bless her😂.
Last one for me tomorrow, I can’t believe it all gone so quickly, I then start on the dreaded Letrozole 😱.
Wow livelifetothefull both you and mum. Know what you mean on the heartbeat. Body rigid as well done breath/move lol. It amazes me how they measure to the mm so not much room to move or sneeze 😳. I hope the rest are your rads go smoothly and you will both be ringing that bell 🔔 loud and clear. Take care and have a good evening 💓
I has two different ladies today who were most concerned that I hadn’t had the whole procedure gone through properly. They both explained everything me to me and also offered to get someone to go through it again after my treatment. Hope I get these two again. They had smiley faces and introduced themselves. I feel better about it today.
Well me & my mum have just both had our first session of radiotherapy at Leeds. We had an appointment before with a lovely lady who discussed the procedure, side effects, skin care and answered any questions.
The radiotherapy was ok-they got me positioned, whilst the machine was buzzing my heart was racing so fast, then it was done. Think I will be less anxious tomorrow- now I’ve had the first treatment.
I have found reading about your experiences useful, thank you ladies. Good luck for the rest of your treatments & well done to those who have finished xx
Sorry for typo rosiepod. Came up rosieposie as I have a friend on here called rosieposie. Lovely predictive text hey just love it sometimes
Hope all goes well for you today. I’ve had different radiologists most days, so hopefully you get someone more caring today.
I had a review after 3rd & 6th rads,to go over anything I wasn’t sure about. Found this really helpful, as I didn’t feel there was time to ask questions when they were lining me up for treatment .
Here’s hoping they do the same at your unit.x