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R-chop & Prednisone

I have completed 3 out of 6 chemo sessions. At the time of the first one we were still waiting for insurance aproval for the Rituxan so it was just Chop. On the day of chemo I have to take 100mg of Prednisone, in the form of 2 50mg tablets, before I go to chemo and for 4 days afterwards. The first time I didn't feel much of a reaction to it except for a dizzy feeling most of the day on each of the 5 days. After the second session I did gain weight and had trouble sleeping. Two days after I stopped taking it I had a hard time staying awake. That conitnued into the next day. My oncologist told me that was the "crash" from the Prednisone. Now with the third session I definitely had the energy surge while taking it. I was averaging 4 -5 hours of sleep and eat just about anything available. 24 hours after I stopped taking it I already was getting the tired feeling. I spent most of the day laying on the couch, but not really sleeping. The next day I tried to work from home but was only able to do 2 hours before resting. Again, just laying on the couch but not sleeping. (I don't feel like eating much at this time which helps me to lose any weight gained wiht the "energy" time.)  After a few hours I finished my half day of work. I was surprised when with third day in that I worked almost the whole day from home without a break.

I am guessing that the addition of the Rituxan to my treatment may have affect how the Prednisone is "working". Some cancer survivors I know have recommended I take advantage of the "energy" burst to clean a room or reorganize my linen closet, or other such activites. Which I plan on doing. It is the "crash" time I wonder about. The oncologist had told me that the crash will occur 48 hours after the Prednisone stops. Yet this last time it seemed to start 24 hours after I stopped. Have others have this happen with this treament? Are there other variations that other have experience I should maybe be aware of?

Comments

  • Rocquie
    Rocquie Member Posts: 853 **
    Welcome

    Hello lindary, and welcome to the group. Congratulations on being half way through your chemo.

    In the two years I have been a member here, I have read more posts about prednisone than anything else. Some people absolutely loathe it. I am not one of them. I didn't mind it, although I took it each morning with an Ativan chaser. On my prednisone days, when my Doctor asked, I would always tell him, "I feel fine today, I'm on performance enhancing drugs". 

    Yes the crash and burn was rough and also coincided with the beginning of my nadir. During this time, I laid around and sat around staring out the window until my blood counts started coming back up. You know the drill, once you start feeling better, it's time for the next round. 

    It sounds like you are doing very well with R-CHOP. Are you needing Neulasta shots? 

    Again, welcome to the group. There are many caring people here to help with your questions and concerns, and share experiences.

    Best,

    Rocquie

     

  • lindary
    lindary Member Posts: 710
    Rocquie said:

    Welcome

    Hello lindary, and welcome to the group. Congratulations on being half way through your chemo.

    In the two years I have been a member here, I have read more posts about prednisone than anything else. Some people absolutely loathe it. I am not one of them. I didn't mind it, although I took it each morning with an Ativan chaser. On my prednisone days, when my Doctor asked, I would always tell him, "I feel fine today, I'm on performance enhancing drugs". 

    Yes the crash and burn was rough and also coincided with the beginning of my nadir. During this time, I laid around and sat around staring out the window until my blood counts started coming back up. You know the drill, once you start feeling better, it's time for the next round. 

    It sounds like you are doing very well with R-CHOP. Are you needing Neulasta shots? 

    Again, welcome to the group. There are many caring people here to help with your questions and concerns, and share experiences.

    Best,

    Rocquie

     

    Thanks.

    Yep, I get neulasta 24 hours after the end of the chemo. I found it interesting that the Rituxan is not considered part of the chemo. First time I got Rituxan they gave it first then the rest of the chemo. Chemo nurse told me that the rest of the treatments will be chemo first, then Rituxan. I tell my co-workers that Chemo day is not a problem. It's the 4 days after (Prednisone) and the 2 or 3 days after that (the crash). I agree, on the Prednisone days it is "fly high" time. Lining stuff up to do for those days I only sleep 4 or 5 hours. I can't say I like taking it because of the taste. My husband laughs at the faces I make when I swallow the pills.Knowing why I have to take to take it is what gets me through swallowing the pills. 

    What I feel helps me to get through this is working. If I can't make it into the office I work from home. My chemo is on a Tues so my goal right now is to make it into the office the Monday before chemo, Wed-Fri the week after and all week of the 3rd week. The exception will when there are dr appts or labs tests. This gets me moving otherwise I would sit all day. I know I also need to be exercising at home but...doesn't happen. 

    When I read what some people have gone through I feel fortunate. I am glad to be part of this group to share information. Warning - I am an information junkie. I hear a new term and I am running Google. 

     

     

  • lindary said:

    Thanks.

    Yep, I get neulasta 24 hours after the end of the chemo. I found it interesting that the Rituxan is not considered part of the chemo. First time I got Rituxan they gave it first then the rest of the chemo. Chemo nurse told me that the rest of the treatments will be chemo first, then Rituxan. I tell my co-workers that Chemo day is not a problem. It's the 4 days after (Prednisone) and the 2 or 3 days after that (the crash). I agree, on the Prednisone days it is "fly high" time. Lining stuff up to do for those days I only sleep 4 or 5 hours. I can't say I like taking it because of the taste. My husband laughs at the faces I make when I swallow the pills.Knowing why I have to take to take it is what gets me through swallowing the pills. 

    What I feel helps me to get through this is working. If I can't make it into the office I work from home. My chemo is on a Tues so my goal right now is to make it into the office the Monday before chemo, Wed-Fri the week after and all week of the 3rd week. The exception will when there are dr appts or labs tests. This gets me moving otherwise I would sit all day. I know I also need to be exercising at home but...doesn't happen. 

    When I read what some people have gone through I feel fortunate. I am glad to be part of this group to share information. Warning - I am an information junkie. I hear a new term and I am running Google. 

     

     

    Correct

    Lindary,

    Info Junkies are always welcome ! You mentioned Rituxan not technically being a traditional "chemo," and that is correct, although it is usually grouped and described with other chemotherapy drugs.  Rituxan is a "monoclonal antibody", and works differently than most chemos ("cytotoxic drugs").    It is effective agains only a few strains of cancer cells, primarily CD-20, which is found mostly in various NHLs. I have one of the few HLs that presents CD-20, and I did receive Rituxan for HL.  R-ABVD does not contain Prednisone or any steroid, so I never had the energetic "high" times, and in fact slept 15 or more hours a day for nearly the whole six months that I received chemo.

    Rituxan is often considered a bit less misery-inspiring than most chemos, but has a long list of potential side-effects, and some people really suffer from them.  Respriatory issus and a flu-like symptoms (serious muscle pain, fever) are fairly common.  I had both symptoms, but when you are on five drugs, most of which can cause those problems, it is impossible to say which is doing what (r-abve; r-chop, etc.).

    Rixutan on also popular in the treatment of (inflammatory) arthritis; a friend has been on it for years for her arthritis, but says that for arthritis it is given in much smaller doses than for cancer fighting.

    http://chemocare.com/chemotherapy/drug-info/Rituxan.aspx#.VR2EX11FC70

     

    max

  • lindary
    lindary Member Posts: 710

    Correct

    Lindary,

    Info Junkies are always welcome ! You mentioned Rituxan not technically being a traditional "chemo," and that is correct, although it is usually grouped and described with other chemotherapy drugs.  Rituxan is a "monoclonal antibody", and works differently than most chemos ("cytotoxic drugs").    It is effective agains only a few strains of cancer cells, primarily CD-20, which is found mostly in various NHLs. I have one of the few HLs that presents CD-20, and I did receive Rituxan for HL.  R-ABVD does not contain Prednisone or any steroid, so I never had the energetic "high" times, and in fact slept 15 or more hours a day for nearly the whole six months that I received chemo.

    Rituxan is often considered a bit less misery-inspiring than most chemos, but has a long list of potential side-effects, and some people really suffer from them.  Respriatory issus and a flu-like symptoms (serious muscle pain, fever) are fairly common.  I had both symptoms, but when you are on five drugs, most of which can cause those problems, it is impossible to say which is doing what (r-abve; r-chop, etc.).

    Rixutan on also popular in the treatment of (inflammatory) arthritis; a friend has been on it for years for her arthritis, but says that for arthritis it is given in much smaller doses than for cancer fighting.

    http://chemocare.com/chemotherapy/drug-info/Rituxan.aspx#.VR2EX11FC70

     

    max

    Rituxan

    So far I have been lucky with not having to it deal with many side effects. I dont't if it is because of other drugs to counter some of them or what. I ran across an article a few weeks ago about Rituxan being used for some diseases that are not cancers. I feel like there are a lot of amazing things going on in the medical field lately. Too mcuh to read all of it. 

  • lindary
    lindary Member Posts: 710
    lindary said:

    Rituxan

    So far I have been lucky with not having to it deal with many side effects. I dont't if it is because of other drugs to counter some of them or what. I ran across an article a few weeks ago about Rituxan being used for some diseases that are not cancers. I feel like there are a lot of amazing things going on in the medical field lately. Too mcuh to read all of it. 

    4th Chemo

    4th Chemo treatment last Tuesday. This time the Prednisone is different. Almost no headaches and not enegry high. Last time Wed & Thur I was running on 4 hours sleep. This time it's Fri and I am still feeling tired. Of course our area had some real bad storms and the dog kept me awake too. Have Cat scan in about 11 days to see how things are going. 

  • lindary
    lindary Member Posts: 710
    lindary said:

    Rituxan

    So far I have been lucky with not having to it deal with many side effects. I dont't if it is because of other drugs to counter some of them or what. I ran across an article a few weeks ago about Rituxan being used for some diseases that are not cancers. I feel like there are a lot of amazing things going on in the medical field lately. Too mcuh to read all of it. 

    4th Chemo

    4th Chemo treatment last Tuesday. This time the Prednisone is different. Almost no headaches and not enegry high. Last time Wed & Thur I was running on 4 hours sleep. This time it's Fri and I am still feeling tired. Of course our area had some real bad storms and the dog kept me awake too. Have Cat scan in about 11 days to see how things are going. 

  • lindary
    lindary Member Posts: 710
    lindary said:

    Rituxan

    So far I have been lucky with not having to it deal with many side effects. I dont't if it is because of other drugs to counter some of them or what. I ran across an article a few weeks ago about Rituxan being used for some diseases that are not cancers. I feel like there are a lot of amazing things going on in the medical field lately. Too mcuh to read all of it. 

    4th Chemo

    4th Chemo treatment last Tuesday. This time the Prednisone is different. Almost no headaches and not enegry high. Last time Wed & Thur I was running on 4 hours sleep. This time it's Fri and I am still feeling tired. Of course our area had some real bad storms and the dog kept me awake too. Have Cat scan in about 11 days to see how things are going. 

  • lindary
    lindary Member Posts: 710
    lindary said:

    Rituxan

    So far I have been lucky with not having to it deal with many side effects. I dont't if it is because of other drugs to counter some of them or what. I ran across an article a few weeks ago about Rituxan being used for some diseases that are not cancers. I feel like there are a lot of amazing things going on in the medical field lately. Too mcuh to read all of it. 

    4th Chemo
    4th Chemo treatment last Tuesday. This time the Prednisone is different. Almost no headaches and not enegry high. Last time Wed & Thur I was running on 4 hours sleep. This time it's Fri and I am still feeling tired. Of course our area had some real bad storms and the dog kept me awake too. Have Cat scan in about 11 days to see how things are going.
  • lindary
    lindary Member Posts: 710
    lindary said:

    Rituxan

    So far I have been lucky with not having to it deal with many side effects. I dont't if it is because of other drugs to counter some of them or what. I ran across an article a few weeks ago about Rituxan being used for some diseases that are not cancers. I feel like there are a lot of amazing things going on in the medical field lately. Too mcuh to read all of it. 

    4th Chemo
    4th Chemo treatment last Tuesday. This time the Prednisone is different. Almost no headaches and not enegry high. Last time Wed & Thur I was running on 4 hours sleep. This time it's Fri and I am still feeling tired. Of course our area had some real bad storms and the dog kept me awake too. Have Cat scan in about 11 days to see how things are going.
  • lindary
    lindary Member Posts: 710
    lindary said:

    Rituxan

    So far I have been lucky with not having to it deal with many side effects. I dont't if it is because of other drugs to counter some of them or what. I ran across an article a few weeks ago about Rituxan being used for some diseases that are not cancers. I feel like there are a lot of amazing things going on in the medical field lately. Too mcuh to read all of it. 

    4th Chemo
    4th Chemo treatment last Tuesday. This time the Prednisone is different. Almost no headaches and not enegry high. Last time Wed & Thur I was running on 4 hours sleep. This time it's Fri and I am still feeling tired. Of course our area had some real bad storms and the dog kept me awake too. Have Cat scan in about 11 days to see how things are going.