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Chemo scares

walterta's picture
walterta
Posts: 31
Joined: Jan 2011

I just found out Monday that I will be having a 6 month treatment of chemo and radiation.I will get a port put in on Monday and treatments will start at the end of February in order to allow my body to heal from my recent surgery. I have a rare cancer I am told, it originated in my appendix and after two years has come back just below my kidney. I just had surgery to remove my kidney and part of my large and small intestine. I am scared about the chemo, I know I will be receiving an aggressive form and I was told I would most likely lose my hair. This is all new to me, I did not get any treatments from my first occurance because they thought I was cured and that they got all of it. It feels better hearing from others that have gone through the chemo so I can have a better idea of what to expect. I will meet with my oncologist next Tuesday to learn more about the chemo treatments I will be getting. Any information is greatly appreciated. Thanks.

Tausha

Lily50's picture
Lily50
Posts: 209
Joined: Aug 2009

Hi Tausha,

Cancer, Chemo & Radiation are all very scary things. Everyone has different experiences with their treatments. At this time do you know if you will be having radiation first, chemo second,vice versa or both at the same time? Do you know what chemo cocktail you will be having?

My name is Lily and I was diagnosed with Gallbladder Cancer Stage 4 in 2005. I too had aggressive chemo(14 months all together - before surgery and after surgery). I didn't have radiation as my liver was compromised. I didn't have a port because I really thought that I was tough and could take it directly into my veins. Wasn't the most brillant idea I ever had as my veins are now totally trashed. If I had to do it over again a port would be the way to go. I lost my hair, eyebrows, eyelashes and a ton of weight. Some people don't lose their hair but since they have already told you that you most likely will lose your hair you probaby will. Some people just cut their hair a little shorter and then wait to see what happens. Others shave it all off. It is totally up to you. I couldn't bring myself to do either one of those things. My hair was a little longer than in your picture and I just wore very pretty scarves and braided my hair. I did watch my braid go from very full to about 1/2". I then cut if off. I did purchase a wig for going out but I think I wore it only maybe 5 times. You need to make these types of decisions for yourself and do what will make you feel better. Go to a "Look Good Feel Better Class" that ACS holds in you area. It really can help. It has been 5 years for me now and I haven't had a recurrance.
Hydration is a major key throughout your whole treatment and keeping up your food intake is very important. Lots of fruits and veragtables and lean meats. Smaller meals are better throughtout the day. Anti-Nausea medication is a key also. Light exercise, and mediation are also helpful.

It is easier sometimes to talk to others that have gone through this type of journey.
Ask me anything that you want and I will try to help.
Take Care
Lily

abrub's picture
abrub
Posts: 1528
Joined: Mar 2010

Most important - have you seen an Appendix cancer specialist? I haven't heard of radiation for appendix cancer, but maybe because it has spread.

What chemo will you be getting? I had appendix cancer and had FolFox plus Avastin - strong stuff, a difficult regimen, but minimal hair loss (body only, not my head.) Some people get FolFiri, which does more commonly have hair loss, but supposedly, the other side effects are easier than Folfox.

Good luck! It will be hard, but somehow, we get through it.

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