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Taxotere and Cytoxan sde effects

celinelvr
Posts: 30
Joined: Mar 2009

Anyone who has had Taxotere and Cytoxan chemotherapy - what were your
side effects??? Mine is feeling mostly like having a bad flu, headache,
tiredness, stomach ache, muscle aches and my heart pounding. I would like
to know how severe to expect. I have had only one dose a week ago - no hair
loss yet.

mary s
Posts: 10
Joined: Feb 2010

Hi Lorrie----glad to hear you did well with your first treatment. My second treatment side effects were about the same as the first, except not as much pain from the Neulasta and they lasted longer....5 days where I was functioning but barely. Now I'm back on my feet again and feel normal (although I think I've forgotten what "normal" is). Good luck! There are others out here waiting to hear about your progress. I got a nice wig, had it styled and it looks like my real hair did, only better. I call it my "dressup hat" because I only wear it for the dressy occasions. If I were still working, I'd wear it to work. I hate the bald look---put a scarf on first thing in the morning and hide under it all day. Amer. Cancer Soc. sponsors a makeup seminar that I found really helpful---Look Good, Feel Better---you can get tips on applying makeup and get a lot of nice stuff for free. I've been dressing for work for years and taught at college level, so wore makeup regularly but this seminar taught this old dog new tricks. Call the ACS for a place near you that is having it---usually in a hospital or cancer center. mary

Hilltop Rescue Farm
Posts: 1
Joined: Mar 2013

I agree with Balentine.  Positive, positive, positive!!!   I just finished my chemo... while the side effects have been very interesting, I have not experienced the depression that many of you have talked about on this post.  I am not usually the most positive person in the world, but after the first extreme shock of diagnosis I went into my little turtle shell and hid for a couple of days.  I prayed and talked to the Lord a lot!  I decided that I would go through anything He set before me without complaint IF He would give me situations where I can help other people and that He would get all the glory.  While all of this has been exhausting and has drained my usually boundless energy, I have not been depressed (thank you Lord).  I also enlisted the aid of friends who are normally upbeat and positive, and they have bombarded me with silly clips, fun stories, and things to make me laugh hysterically.  There have been times when I thought chemo would never end, and I am still facing the radiation part, but I have been so thankful that He has allowed me to maintain my regular schedule, for the most part.  I teach 165 high school students and have not had to go part time.  In fact, I was able to take on an additional class because our numbers swelled, and I was the only one with a planning period.  I maintain a rescue farm with 54 critters that we take care of. My husband is self-employed and I also maintain his books.  I REALLY don't want anyone to look at this as bragging on myself... IT IS NOT!  I am just trying to help someone understand the level to which the Lord has helped me through all this. Through all of this, He has made me glad, placed people in my path who are dealing with the same cancer and I have been able to help them.  He has helped me with perspective as well.  This is NOT the most devastating thing I have had to go through, and I have to always place it on the measurement scale with other things that have been horribly devastating, and while this is scary and hard, and yukky, and I hate feeling sick all the time.... in perspective... this isn't the worst.   I can do this!! And this, too, shall pass!   I hope this helps someone. Many Blessings.... 

dawnday
Posts: 2
Joined: Jul 2011

Hi. I go to the doctor Thursday to discuss the chemo. He did tell me that I would be given Taxatere and Cytoxan 4 treatments every 3 weeks. I want to be prepared and find out beforehand what to expect. All your comments have been helpful and scary. I have OCD and need to know if any of you were given the option NOT to have a port. Do they deliver the chemo IV in the vein each time?

mamolady's picture
mamolady
Posts: 795
Joined: May 2011

I opted not to have a port. My doctor felt I am young and have good veins. The risks of the port were not worth the effort. Besides it would have delayed treatment. I had a total of 16 infusions. 4 AC, 12 Taxol, plus labs the day before each infusion.
The nurses did not like having to start an IV. I don't know if this is just the infusion center I went to or not. If they warm the arm before starting the IV it goes easier.
I didn't have the mastectomy till after chemo so they alternated arms to give the veins a rest. They also flushed the vein for about 10 minutes after chemo to help maintain the veins.

Good luck!
Cindy

dawnday
Posts: 2
Joined: Jul 2011

Hi. I go to the doctor Thursday to discuss the chemo. He did tell me that I would be given Taxatere and Cytoxan 4 treatments every 3 weeks. I want to be prepared and find out beforehand what to expect. All your comments have been helpful and scary. I have OCD and need to know if any of you were given the option NOT to have a port. Do they deliver the chemo IV in the vein each time?

fighting4five
Posts: 71
Joined: Jun 2011

My oncologist said he did not want me to have a port. He said that If I stay well hydrated that they should be able to do an IV each treatment.I am having 12 weekly treatments and herceptin for a year.Not sure if that really a good thing or not but I felt relieved when he said that.
Good Luck, I'm sending many prayers

Mary

mstrouble16's picture
mstrouble16
Posts: 1
Joined: Nov 2011

I started my 4 dose treatment of taxotere and cytoxan on Monday 11/7/11, during the cytoxan the nausea hit me like a brick, but came in waves, Wednesday I received my neulasta. The nausea, cramping and metal taste have been really bad so far. Oh did I mention the mood swings!!!

msoptimistic
Posts: 1
Joined: Nov 2011

I started my 1st chemo treatment on 10/24/11. I'm scheduled for 4 total every three weeks. I got the Neulasta the day after too. Have you had any hair loss yet? My started falling out this past Monday and by Wednesday, I lost 80%. Will I continue to lose hair or will I stay like this? My hair is normally very thick--now it is thinned out alot and I have it pulled back in a 2" ponytail. Should I shave the rest off or just wait? My next treatment is 11/16.

witolika
Posts: 1
Joined: Jun 2012

Hello everyone. As of July 13th, 2012 I will be breast cancer free for two years. My last chemo treatment was Dec. 2nd, 2011. There were six total of which I had them every three weeks. I got both Taxotere and Cytoxan at the same time and the following day I had to have neulasta shots. I am one of the 5% that have severe side effects. I had stage three grade three aggressive infiltrating ductal carcinoma. I was lucky that it hadn't metastisized yet. I had a double mastectomy with latissimus trap reconstruction (which means they used my back instead of my stomach). After my first chemo treatment my plateletes dropped to 0.2 and they were going to hospitalize me. Instead they gave me a shot of neuprogen of which I was allergic to and it damaged my heart causing me to have two emergency stents put in my heart to keep me alive. After each treatment, even with the prescriptions they gave me for nausea, I got sick to my stomach. It would take me two weeks to be able to get out of bed with little assistance. My reconstruction healing was slowed by the chemo and I had to have one breast redone as it split open. Each chemo treatment left me completely exhausted, moderate chemo brain, difficulty sleeping due to the steroids, constant headache and ringing in my ears. A week after my first chemo I lost my hair. By the second chemo I lost all hair on my body - which kind of was a plus because I didn't have to shave and being bald helped with the really bad hot flashes! It was tough seeing myself without eyebrows and eyelashes. The fifth chemo was tough and they almost didn't give me the last one as they were afraid I was not going to make it through it. I decided to go ahead anyway as I didn't want to regret later not finishing all of the treatment. The roof of my mouth would peel after each chemo treatment. My skin on my forearms feels leathery. The neulasta shots would give me severe deep bone pain as it was forcing my bone marrow to make new blood cells. I would get these electric shocks in my spine that made me want to scream. I still get these to this day, but thankfully it is occassional and only lasts a few hours. This would last a week. Just when I was finally feeling better, almost three weeks after a treatment, I would have to go in for the next treatment. My last treatment was the worst.

So almost one and one half years after my last chemo treatment and this is what I am still going through as far as side effects. I have a constant mild headache which ramps up into a migraine three to four times a week. There are some weeks I can't get out of bed because my migraines last for days. Chronic severe fatigue causing me to have to rest, lay down, multiple times a day. I have lost more than 50% of my grip strength in my right hand and just less than that in my left with neuropathy in both. I also have a moderate tremor in both which is constant. I have transient mild amnesia which only lasts a few seconds and that happens minimum once a day. Due to the steroids and the inability to move I gained 60 pounds! I am slowly loosing it. My heart damage gives me constant chest pain and difficulty breathing. My upper body aches all the time also, that is to say the areas that I still have feeling in. I don't have feeling in the areas around my surgeries. I have constant ringing in my ears, the right much worse than the left and I am told I am slowly loosing my hearing. Short term memory, cognitive thinking and severe forgetfulness are part of my chemo brain. I went through four months of intense physical therapy which helped very little. Oh, and I was told that some time during my chemo treatments that I would lose my nails. Well it was about one and one half months after my last chemo treatment that I lost my nails and toe nails. They came back but they are thinner. My hair on my head grew back in, same color but it is curly.....yeah! My eyebrows are much thinner and so are my eyelashes but at least they came back in. The rest of the hair on my body also didn't come back in as thick. Pain, well I have constant pain in my arm pits, the right much worse than the left as that is where they took out the lymph nodes. Many times during the day the pain runs down into my hands (neuropathy). My legs, ankles and feet swell if I sit for more than half an hour. There are more minor things.

Reading this has probably scared you very much. Remember I am one of those 5% that have these severe reactions. Others that I know whom have went through chemo are doing great. Myself, I am happy to be alive and enjoy every minute that I have to live no matter what physically or mentally I have to put up with! To me it tells me I am alive! You can get through anything with a positive attitude.

justjud
Posts: 2
Joined: Mar 2013

A long of problems with first dose of taxotere. 2ND DOSE...ALLERGIC REACTION.A FTER 2 1/2 YEARS I STILL FEEL THE EFFECTS. UNBELIABLE FATIGUE, RUNNY NOSE AND SORE EYES. ACHE. MOOD SWINGS.NUMBNESS IN HANDS AND FEET .LEG CRAMPS. OCCASIONALLY I HAVE A GOD DAY OR TWO WHICH I TRY TO ENJOY.

JUDY

justjud
Posts: 2
Joined: Mar 2013

A long of problems with first dose of taxotere. 2ND DOSE...ALLERGIC REACTION.A FTER 2 1/2 YEARS I STILL FEEL THE EFFECTS. UNBELIABLE FATIGUE, RUNNY NOSE AND SORE EYES. ACHE. MOOD SWINGS.NUMBNESS IN HANDS AND FEET .LEG CRAMPS. OCCASIONALLY I HAVE A GOOD DAY OR TWO WHICH I TRY TO ENJOY.

JUDY

Rosie Posie
Posts: 1
Joined: Mar 2013

I had taxotere and cytoxan and am one of the many who did not get her hair back afterwards.  I would give anything to have been warned about this risk before.  (See aheadofourtime.org)

There are other cocktails that are just as effective, just not as well marketed to the oncologists as tax and cyt. are.  It's devastating, to say the least, to be bald at 42 yrs. old. 

Patti1967
Posts: 186
Joined: Mar 2013

I'm so sorry Rosie, I just finished chemo three months ago and my hair is trying to slowly grow back.  I too had both drugs and lost all body hair before I started round two.  I'm 45 and feel your pain, it's bad enough all we have to go through to treat this awful cancer just to have the drugs that save us, rob us of what makes us feel like ourselves.... Or in my case, just three months later be diagnosed with another cancer, SCC, and be told it was due to my immune system being down from the chemo that it was able to run wild.  Hugs to you!

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