Starting Chemo next week..any advice

Debbie1064 Member Posts: 4
edited March 2014 in Breast Cancer #1
I am starting chemo next week. I will have 4 doses of Adriamycin and Cytoxin followed by 4 doses of Taxol (every other week). Does anyone have any words of wisdom?


  • lajohnso4
    lajohnso4 Member Posts: 31
    Keep a positive attitude, I think the scariest part is the unknown. How your body will react to chemicals being pumped into them. I was terrified at the thought of chemo, but I decided that I need to do all that I could to rid my body of cancer. I did not have any bad episodes, I tolerared the chemo very well. Relax, you will meet some wonderful people that are going through the same things that you are. The nurses are wonderful people and will advise you of what to do and not to do. You will be required to drink plenty of fluids to flush the chemo out. Since you will probably be there quite a while you might want to bring something to read. I am a big fan of gospel music so I would bring my cd player and tapes and take comfort in the fact that God is there with me. You will make it through this. GOD BLESS YOU
  • sassysally
    sassysally Member Posts: 150
    Debbie, drink lots and lots of water during your chemo to flush thru your system. Try not to eat before had it will make it worse. If you think you may get nauseous, ask for nausea pills before hand. Also, there is a pill you must take the night before. Has your oncologist given you this to take??? if not, ask him I think it is some sort of steroid. Must have. Hang in there. Keep a positive attitude and take it one step at a time.
  • Mosis50
    Mosis50 Member Posts: 59
    Debbie, not sure about the wisdom I have, but I do have experience with the meds you will be taking. Drink a lot of water and take ice water with you to chemo. It really does help flush your system. Keep a positive attitude AND a sense of humor. Different people react in different ways to these meds so keep your doctor informed about any reaction you have. I made a list of concerns before I went to the doctor so I could remember. Your doctor will give you meds to help with many of the side effects. I had more trouble with the Taxol than the AC (but that was just me). I lost my hair before my second chemo so make plans for what you will do. I "styled" in some pretty neat hats and I got a wig to wear to work. I continued to work as much as possible during chemo, but stayed home when I was too tired or sick to work. Don't push yourself. Let your friends and family help you when they want to help. God Bless You during this fight for your life. I believe it was the prayers of my family and friends (and myself) that got me through. I will be praying for you, Debbie.
  • wildangel
    wildangel Member Posts: 81
    I think there is a new pill called emend that you take for the first three days that really gets rid of any nausea. Drink a ton of water. Make sure you take all your meds on a schedule. And make sure your stomach doesn't get too empty. Always nibble on something. And the most important thing to remember!!!!
    Whatever is running through your imagination right now is NOTHING like what is going to happen. You are going to be like- THIS IS CHEMO? Really!
    Just relax and know it is not forever. It will be over and your hair will come back. The only thing that will be sorry is those darn cancer cells because they are about to be history!
    GOOD LUCK!!!!
  • wimpy
    wimpy Member Posts: 58
    Hi Debbie

    Chemotherapy is never as bad as we imagine it will be. I can't add much to what the others have said but if it was me starting chemo I would make sure the doctor informed me about all potential side effects of the chemo drugs especially the Taxol. Just a thought.
  • mom62
    mom62 Member Posts: 604 Member

    The best thing I did for myself was take a friend or family member to each chemo, with some magazines. I found having someone to gab with the whole time took my mind off what was going on. I didn't each much before I went. When you do the A/C bring some popsicles so you don't have to chew ice chips. I was luckily never sick, but the Taxol did cause me muscle and joint pain. Good luck with your chemo, and count them down, they will be over soon.

  • marysun
    marysun Member Posts: 39 Member
    Debbie our energy is with you. The other ladies all have good ideas and you can pick & choose from them. My advice: yes, drink water, water, water. Have a friend or family member take you to treatment and stay with you, too. Take every med they say, the drs & nurses know what they are doing.
    One thing I didn't do until my last treatment was take a relaxant BEFORE treatment. I took a paxil and just floated through. Do yourself a favor and take some drugs to make you feel better. Ask your dr about relaxing drugs. Remember when drugs were recreational? Now we have an excuse!
    Good luck Debbie. You will do fine. (((hugs)))
  • DiO
    DiO Member Posts: 51
    I agree with all of the above posts, and my experiences were very similar to theirs. I had exactly the same chemo as you are scheduled for, also every two weeks instead of three. One thing no one else mentioned and was the hardest for me emotionally: I had planned to work as much as possible during treatment and my docs said I should be able to work as long as I was able to take off as needed if I felt too bad. Turns out beginning with the first treatment when my blood counts dropped very low (as expected) they told me I couldn't work because I work in retail and am exposed to the public all day (I told them this from the start, but they just didn't put it all together, I guess). Turns out with the every two week schedule I was able to get in about two days of work every other week, then took off the last six weeks entirely. I think this would have been much easier for me to deal with emotionally had I been aware of it from the start instead of having to work through it at the same time as all the other ups and downs of chemo. That said, it all is really very doable and with the two week protocol you're done lots sooner and able to get back to your normal routine! Good luck and God bless, Di
  • Debbie1064
    Debbie1064 Member Posts: 4
    Thank you all for your advice. I picked up Kytril Emend and Dexamethazone from the pharmacy. The oncologist said to bring them with me, but not to take anything the night before. I will also be getting an injection of neulasta 2 days following each treatment to keep my blood counts up. I am going to drink lots of water as you've all suggested and my sister is coming with me to my treatment. I've already told them at work not to expect me in on Thursday or Friday...even if I feel well, I want to be close to home!! I know I'm not the only person going through this, but sometimes it feels like it! I'm glad you're all there to lend an ear and some advice too.

  • KarenKL
    KarenKL Member Posts: 42
    As you have read everyone is different. I started my Chemo on the 1st. I didn't do so good. I threw up for the first two days. I took Kytril and Emend couldn't keep them down so I had suppositories. When I could keep stuff down then I took the steroids. The Dr. is now going to up my meds. They knew I was considered high risk cause of my history, but they must not have thought it was that bad. I have treatments every three weeks and not looking forward to it, but like they say we're all different and react different so good luck to you.