Anyone anxious about upcoming Chemo? Positive thoughts on it. Anybody had a reaction to Taxotere?

June28 Member Posts: 5
edited March 2014 in Breast Cancer #1
Today was my first Chemo Treatment. I'd pretty much worked thru a lot of anxiety, and although I know its not anyone's first choice for a fun outing, I got to thinking--what if there were a very limited supply of chemo drugs? Those of us who need it to give ourselves a better chance of beating this would be clammoring to get in line!! What if it were so rare that the only way to get treatment was by winning a lottery where they draw your name??? It really got me thinking of it in a different light!! It wasn't really that long ago that there was very little Drs could do for a cancer patient!! I'm glad I wasn't born even a few decades earlier!! My father lost an Aunt, Uncle, and their son to cancer when they were fairly young!! My Mother-in-law lost a teenage brother to leukemia during WWII!! I'm sure we must know someone who lived before the wonderful current advances in treating cancer!!
Maybe this will help some of us get some of these potentially scary or unpleasant treatments in a better perspective!??
I'm really thinking this after today's first chemo treatment!! I'm not sure I will be even able to tolerate any of the Chemo drugs!!! I seem to react to most drugs given to me, and there are very few antibiotics that agree with me!!
It started out OK. They gave me an IV med for nausea that will last for FIVE DAYS!!!!
I didn't know something like that existed!!! Then some IV decadron (a steroid). So far-so good! Then they started the first of 2 chemo drugs--Taxotere. Has anyone else had a reaction from this?? As soon as it entered my bloodstream I reacted. They told me that if a reaction occurs it is right at the beginning of treatment. They told me if I felt anything unusual to report it immediately. (The nursing staff was really excellent- skilled, confident and calm). First I felt a pressure in my chest (not bad, but significant). Then my face felt hot and red and I felt a bit dizzy. Later my breathing felt different, like I need to take slow deep breaths. They checked my oxygen level with the thing they clip over a finger, and to make me more comfortable they started a little bit of oxygen.
When this first began the nurse came over immediately, turned off the Chemo med, and hooked up a saline IV to help flush it out of my system. Someone called the Dr, who was there in just a few minutes-as his office is on the same floor!! That was comforting to have his personal attention.
He wants me to come back on Monday, Sept 28 for another try. Only this time, he is ordering decadron pills to take twice the day before, and once, on Monday morning before I come. He told me that it may not be possible to take this particular med. (I am one of those "special" persons that are super sensitive to a long list of meds. I can't even take a baby aspirin-it swells up my tongue and gives me mouth sores!!) What if I react to everything they try for Chemo?? Then I realized how badly I wanted this med--and how badly I wanted it to work and kill all those cancer cells that can be hiding!! Its frustrating to have treatment delayed!!! I don't want those cells to have time to "think"!! The nurse reassured me that many people that this happens to are able to take it on the 2nd try with no problems whatsoever. There were 12 chairs full of people receiving their Chemo, and they were all doing fine!!!! Some read a book, others talked on their cell phones, others took a nap thru it all. So, if you are going to be having chemo and are scared, be reassured! Just picture that room of calm, comfortable cancer survivors!! They even brought us lunch free!! We got to choose from a menu of sandwiches, croissants, soups, salads, various juices and soft drinks, and a dessert. (I had a brownie!!).
What I experienced wasn't real scary, as they were "right on it", and the symptoms never progressed and got worse. They went away pretty fast, actually. However my head felt a little "funny", very slightly dizzy for over an hour. I stayed and relaxed in the recliner until I felt OK, then my husband drove me home.
I'd love to hear from someone who may have had a reaction to Taxotere!


  • JGrim
    JGrim Member Posts: 36
    I don't remember which exact
    I don't remember which exact drug I reacted to, but I tend to react badly to anything I get via IV. I have to get everything super slow and with both steroids and benedryl, and I take a claritin and prednisone before I go in. My reaction started with seeing stars, then within one minute I was blind and had (apparently) turned lobster red. They stopped the meds, gave me more benedryl and slowed it down even more and continued the drugs... and this time I was fine. So I wouldn't let one try put you off that drug... I continued my full course of chemo after that, it just took longer and I was way more zonked out. Can they up your pre-meds and slow down the rate at which you get the drugs?
  • Marcia527
    Marcia527 Member Posts: 2,729
    I had a reaction to it also.
    I had a reaction to it also. The first one the nurse sat and watched me and said some people do have a reaction. So I didn't think it was that uncommon. I had the same tightness in the chest and flush face or I felt hot in the face. I told her and she shut it off right away. They had to drip it slower. I was fine then.

    In another treatment I didn't have my regular nurse and the sub didn't read my chart and dripped me too fast and the reaction started again. We had to get her to stop it. She slowed it down and I was fine then. After that I told any new person.
  • Sam726
    Sam726 Member Posts: 233
    I did
    I had a reaction to taxotere, but they told me that most people react to the solution they use to mix the taxotere. Immediately, my throat started to close up. They disconnected, gave me adavan and steroid, hooked me up again and I was fine. Sorry u had such a rough time....hopefully after this they will be more prepared for you and know what you will react to.
  • mgm42
    mgm42 Member Posts: 491 Member
    Kindred spirit
    Like you, I'm allergic to just about every type of medication and have reactions from major to minor. I had an allergic reaction to Taxotere, also. Mine was not like yours. Mine affected my nervous system. It was like electrical shocks running up and down my spine. My nurses quickly figured out how to fully load my meds, including benedryl, for my allergic reaction at the very beginning of my infusion and they slowed down the drip. They would spend the first 20 minutes with me because my reaactions started 15 minutes into the infusion. Once they did their miraculous thing, I had no further reactions. You're right. Chemo drugs are essential and probably are the reason most of us survive to enjoy our lives. Good luck with the rest of your chemo treatments. I'll keep you in prayers. Hugs, Marilynn