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Radiation update

CindyGSD's picture
CindyGSD
Posts: 191
Joined: Aug 2011

I said I would post as my radiation progressed but it has been rather uneventful.

I just completed my 25 rounds of pelvic radiation today (whoopee) and I’m happy to report, no major side effects. I have some burning when I urinate and stools are a little softer and more frequent, but it never made me feel fatigued and I worked straight through. I am getting three sessions of brachytherapy starting Friday and then I’ll be done until chemo starts again at the end of January. Having reached the insurance cap on how much I have to pay for the year, I can’t tell you how stressed I’ve been about getting this radiation done before the end of the year.

As it’s been explained to me, brachytherapy should take no longer then a couple of hours at most, and probably less. I will have to be catheterized for the first treatment, as apparently they measure how much radiation is hitting your bladder, but the second and third treatment don’t sound all that invasive.

I was also finally told about the dilator and was told I would have to use it, possibly for the rest of my life. I contemplated how silly it was for me to spend the next several decades using it to keep myself “open” when if finally occurred to me that I might not have several decades of life left. Funny how our mind insulates us from the reality of our prognosis as we go about our day to day lives.

Anyway, just wanted to let those just starting treatment, that for me anyway, radiation was a piece of cake.

Take care,
Cindy

Heather H
Posts: 11
Joined: Nov 2011

Thanks Cindy for sharing your experience. It is so helpful to know what is ahead for my sister who will be having the same treatment.

cleo
Posts: 122
Joined: Sep 2009

I wondered how you were getting on and pleased to hear that all went well. You have a positive attitude and I think that's half the battle.

Cynthia Rose's picture
Cynthia Rose
Posts: 35
Joined: Apr 2011

My Mom will be going through it also.Now we know more what to expect!Takes alot of stress off of us!Fear of the unknown.

RoseyR
Posts: 464
Joined: Feb 2011

I too sailed through 25 pelvic radiation treatments with virtually no side effects.

However, it CAN help to drink a small bottle of water before each treatment to protect your small bowel; otherwise, you could wind up with diahrrea for more than a week or two after treatment. I tried to drink as much as my bladder could hold without an accident--but truthfully, your small bowel is more important than an accident: who cares if you leak a bit even on the table? Nurses say they see it happen quite frequently.

I also was given 90 mgs of zinc chelate (Nature's Way) a day to protect my intestinal lining by my integrative doctor and also took 500 mgs of curcumin three times a day with meals, also prescribed by him.

But as you can see, even a few women who took no supplements had few side effects.

So try just to relax and it will be over before you know it!

Love,
Rosey

RoseyR
Posts: 464
Joined: Feb 2011

I too sailed through 25 pelvic radiation treatments with virtually no side effects.

However, it CAN help to drink a small bottle of water before each treatment to protect your small bowel; otherwise, you could wind up with diahrrea for more than a week or two after treatment. I tried to drink as much as my bladder could hold without an accident--but truthfully, your small bowel is more important than an accident: who cares if you leak a bit even on the table? Nurses say they see it happen quite frequently.

I also was given 90 mgs of zinc chelate (Nature's Way) a day to protect my intestinal lining by my integrative doctor and also took 500 mgs of curcumin three times a day with meals, also prescribed by him.

But as you can see, even a few women who took no supplements had few side effects.

So try just to relax and it will be over before you know it!

Love,
Rosey

CindyGSD's picture
CindyGSD
Posts: 191
Joined: Aug 2011

I was told to drink 20 to 24 oz of water or other liquid an hour before every treatment. I am a big water drinker, but this seemed excessive to me. I ended up drinking maybe 8 oz and a couple of cups of coffee. Usually my bladder was full though not uncomfortably so. It only became a problem when they were running behind. Its not easy to "go" only a little bit to relieve the pressure, but I managed it a couple of times.

I also wanted to mention that I had no radiation burns and no discoloring,at least as far as I can tell.

I'm so looking forward to brachytherapy tomorrow. NOT! I'll give everyone a play by play of that lovely experience whether you want to hear about it or not. ;o)

Cindy

Susan53's picture
Susan53
Posts: 177
Joined: Jun 2011

Hi Cindy I also wondered why I would have to use the dialator the rest of my life. Thinking that when I was 80 years old who cared. Then it dawned on me that they do need it to be kept open for medical access. Duh lol I am not 80 yet only 58 but I kept picturing myself at 80 years old. That is the optimist in me. Sharon

jazzy1's picture
jazzy1
Posts: 1387
Joined: Mar 2010

I as well had 33 pelvic radiation treatments. Must say my side affects were lots of fatigue and very fast bowels. Learned to watch my diet....less roughage and lots of naps. Today 2-1/2 years later my bowels are a bit challenged, but have learned what to avoid in foods which bother me

All in all, it's well worth the treatments.

Jan

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