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Drugs Before Chemo

JoyD's picture
JoyD
Posts: 81
Joined: Feb 2009

I need your expert opinion in regards to the drug(s) that you need to take before starting Chemo. I will be starting mine on April 1 (Wed) and I tried to call Dr's Office but he is on vacation til March 31, 2009. I was talking to my boss this afternoon as she had BC last year. During our conversation she asked me the following: (1) Did your Oncologist prescribed you with a medication before starting Chemo - it is NOT the Anti-Nausea Rx but she said its like Steroid or medication for allergic reaction on the Chemo. (2) Did you go through like a Pre-Chemo training...what she meant is that she came in Dr's office to get info on what to expect during Chemo and of course answer and question session.

I am now in a panic mode because she also asked on of our co-worker today who had BC too, 8 months ago and she went through items (1) and (2).

I know Doctors are different in terms of the mode of treatment. But for my peace of mind, I would like your opinion on this.

Pls advise.

Joy

tasha_111's picture
tasha_111
Posts: 2041
Joined: Oct 2008

Joy I had both. Drugs to take before, during and after chemo, and a "Training" session at the hospital to tell you what to expect...they were both helpful... Good Luck Hun Jxxxxxxxxxxxxx

chetra's picture
chetra
Posts: 17
Joined: Mar 2009

Joy,
I had chemo June - Nov 2008 for BC and I did not have any meds or training prior to chemo.
I was watch every closely my first and second treatment. And the day of treatment they explained all they was doing as they went. Dont panic you are right all Dr. and treatment centers are different. The main thing is that you are totally confident in your Dr. and treatment center. Because if you are not you have a right to change at any time.
Good luck hun.
Chetra

seof
Posts: 826
Joined: Jun 2007

It is OK to be nervous...fear is part of the cancer journey. I did not have drugs prior to chemo, but they gave me plenty in the IV, and some to take home. I did have a pre-chemo training session. If you do not have one scheduled, you might ask for it. The unknown is a major contributor to the fear factor, so learning all you can can help reduce the fear. Write down any questions you have and keep trying to get in touch with Dr. or nurse, or someone who can let you know something. get someone to go with you to help write down the answers to the questions...2 heads can be better than one, especially with such an emotional subject. I bought a book called "a cancer journey" from the ACS online bookstore which helped a lot. Also, you can go to chemocare.com to look up specific information on a certain drug, if you want. You can also get in touch with your local ACS to find a support group in your area.

Bottom line: Call Dr. or nurse, ask questions, ask questions, ask questions....seof

chenheart's picture
chenheart
Posts: 5182
Joined: Apr 2003

No need to panic~ I got the steroid when I went in for the infusion, and it "took" before they started the chemo IV. Make the RNs your "best friends" at your cancer center; they are generally so incredibly nurturing, and will take the time to answer any questions you might have. They are familiar with just about anything we can conjure up and they are happy to make themselves available to you! And, of course, you now have US~ the strong army of warrior-survivors!! GRRRRRR!!! :-)

Hugs,
Claudia

jakeca
Posts: 92
Joined: Dec 2008

The first treatment came so fast, I did not have time to have any drugs the day before chemo. I had lost confidence in my first oncologist so had gone for a second opinion. I liked him and his treatment plan and asked him when we could start to which he replied, "Now, if you want." I already had my port, so within 15 minutes, I was hooked up and started. It was GREAT. No time to get nervous or upset. I made it fine. After that, I did take a steroid orally the day before, the day of and the day after chemo in addition to the drugs they gave me through my port during infusion. I watched an educational video during my first infusion to help me know what to expect and the nurses were wonderful, answering our questions and reassuring us.

You'll be fine. (everyone told me that, and it was so hard to believe, but it IS true.)

phoenixrising's picture
phoenixrising
Posts: 1509
Joined: Feb 2007

I only had steroids the day before, the day of and the day after Taxotere (taxol) which I took after FEC. The rest of the drugs were anti-nausea. It may depend on the chemo regime you'll be taking. I'm sure if they wanted you to take something before they would have written a script for it or given it to you. As far as an information video, I think there was something, but to tell you the truth I don't really remember much about it, but I do think it was the day of my first tx so they might have it when you get there. Good luck to
you, you'll be done before you know it.
love
jan

celinelvr
Posts: 30
Joined: Mar 2009

I had the steroids the day before the day of and the day after. They also put steroids in my IV along with the anti-nausea meds. As far as the chemo teaching, my chemo nurse went over the book, "Chemotherapy and You" from the National Cancer Institute. You can obtain it online at this website: http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/chemotherapy-and-you.pdf.
Hope it helps!

Milly

rjjj's picture
rjjj
Posts: 1826
Joined: Jan 2009

I also feared the first chemo treatment (who wouldn't??) I found i really had nothing to fear. The chemo nurses are absolute angels, i believe most are or they wouldn't have chosen that profession. They told me just to think of it as a relaxing day, gave me pillows, blankets, books, TV remote, anything i wanted to eat or drink and uplifting conversation. It truly was not at all bad.

I took a quick peak at the chemo room before i went in. My anti-nausea and steroids are given IV right before my tx. Don't worry they take very good care of you. If you have someone to go with you that helps also my hubbie goes with me every time. Sometimes he just sits in the recliner next to me and naps with me.

I also have treatment the 1st of April it will be my 5th. I am excited because then i will only have one more to go. I know..i have rads and a year of herceptin infusion,,5 years of estrogen pill. but i think the worst part will be over. With the Herceptin my hair will grow back. OH Happy Day!! One day at a time. you will do it! and be amazed at the strength God will give you.

Love and hugs
jackie

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