Start chemo on thursday

pitt
pitt Member Posts: 387
edited March 2014 in Breast Cancer #1
Hey everyone! I'm starting chemo on Thursday. I donated my 11" ponytail to Lock of Love. Bought a wig. Bought some scarves. Have my medicine. Maid comes tomorrow. Friends created "food tree" to make life easier for me and the kids. Can anyone give me some advice about what I can do to make the next few months more bearable? Someone mentioned baby oil to keep nails from becoming brittle. Claritin helps with the Neulasta shot. Oh, my favorite advice was to have a glass of wine each night to ease the chance of nausea!!! Any other advice? Thanks.

Comments

  • Cat64
    Cat64 Member Posts: 1,192
    Hi pitt
    That's so awesome that you donated your hair! I did the same. How wonderful of your friends to do that for you, sure will make things easier on the family. Sounds like you have all your ducks in a row! I haven't started Chemo as of yet so I can't offer any advice there except to get plenty of rest! Good luck on your 1st treatment. Let us know how you are doing!
    Hugz,
    Cathy
  • Deb1969
    Deb1969 Member Posts: 165
    Cat64 said:

    Hi pitt
    That's so awesome that you donated your hair! I did the same. How wonderful of your friends to do that for you, sure will make things easier on the family. Sounds like you have all your ducks in a row! I haven't started Chemo as of yet so I can't offer any advice there except to get plenty of rest! Good luck on your 1st treatment. Let us know how you are doing!
    Hugz,
    Cathy

    Drink plenty of fluids and
    Drink plenty of fluids and be prepared for constipation that chemo causes.
    Deb
  • meena1
    meena1 Member Posts: 1,003
    I am a 1 year breast cancer
    I am a 1 year breast cancer survivor. I did not have many problems through chemo, mostly fatigue and indigestion. The glass of wine sounds good, but I was not allowed to have any alcohol during my chemo, not even mouth wash. Remember everyone is different, but I have also read that alcohol fuel breast cancer cells. Here are things I found helpful
    1. drink a lot of water, green tea, juice (not citrus)
    2. take walks, about 30 minutes each day.
    3. rest often
    4. eat small meals. I liked applesauce with cinnamon, any fruit--especially blueberries, pancakes with fruit, salmon, rice, scrambled eggs..nothing heavy or spicy, yogurt, you get the idea, your taste buds will change during chemo.
    5. I was constipated (and that seems to be a problem in other posts) so i took a stool softener my oncologist recommended.
    6. Do not take any vitamins or over the counter medications unless your oncologist approves it, i could not take even Advil.
    7. Make friends with other women getting chemo, I have a little support group everywhere I go, it helps. Or join a support group. Although your husband and friends are wonderful people, they cannot understand what you are going through,
    8. Stay Positive. Make a mantra that you say each morning when you wake up.
    I am sure you will get a lot of good advise from my sisters, so take care, and keep posting!
  • ppurdin
    ppurdin Member Posts: 1,181
    Good luck with Chemo.
    I just had my first Chemo treatment Tues.Unfortuntly I have had alot of the side effects.The sore mouth,aching in joints,tired.I just rest when I can,and except the fact that i have to.I was told to rinse my mouth out with salt water.I also bought me some over sized t shirts and comfty bottoms to wear around the house.I am trying to tell people nicley when I don,t feel like company.Their have already been days like that when I had my surgerys.And i wouldn,t tell anyone when i didn,t feel like company.It was horrible ,I would sit up hrs. and talk to them when all I really wanted was sleep.I would recomend telling them nicley.Having a maid would be wonderful.your very lucky.Take care and good luck.(Pat).
  • VickiSam
    VickiSam Member Posts: 9,079 Member
    meena1 said:

    I am a 1 year breast cancer
    I am a 1 year breast cancer survivor. I did not have many problems through chemo, mostly fatigue and indigestion. The glass of wine sounds good, but I was not allowed to have any alcohol during my chemo, not even mouth wash. Remember everyone is different, but I have also read that alcohol fuel breast cancer cells. Here are things I found helpful
    1. drink a lot of water, green tea, juice (not citrus)
    2. take walks, about 30 minutes each day.
    3. rest often
    4. eat small meals. I liked applesauce with cinnamon, any fruit--especially blueberries, pancakes with fruit, salmon, rice, scrambled eggs..nothing heavy or spicy, yogurt, you get the idea, your taste buds will change during chemo.
    5. I was constipated (and that seems to be a problem in other posts) so i took a stool softener my oncologist recommended.
    6. Do not take any vitamins or over the counter medications unless your oncologist approves it, i could not take even Advil.
    7. Make friends with other women getting chemo, I have a little support group everywhere I go, it helps. Or join a support group. Although your husband and friends are wonderful people, they cannot understand what you are going through,
    8. Stay Positive. Make a mantra that you say each morning when you wake up.
    I am sure you will get a lot of good advise from my sisters, so take care, and keep posting!

    I can't add anymore .. Meena's suggestions are GREAT
    I would only add .. use Tom's toothpaste or baking soda, if you do get sore inside your mouth ..rinse mouth with warm salt water. Use plastic forks and spoons - this will help with that metallic taste you may experience, after chemo.


    I suffered from constipation and fatigue. It will be okay - journal all side efforts. The first sign of any discomfort - please contact your onc or onc staff. Don't wait and try to tuff it out ..

    Support system with family and friends is great, but a breast cancer support group is another avenue that I recommend.

    Good luck, and take very good care of yourself.

    VickiSam
  • New Flower
    New Flower Member Posts: 4,294
    ppurdin said:

    Good luck with Chemo.
    I just had my first Chemo treatment Tues.Unfortuntly I have had alot of the side effects.The sore mouth,aching in joints,tired.I just rest when I can,and except the fact that i have to.I was told to rinse my mouth out with salt water.I also bought me some over sized t shirts and comfty bottoms to wear around the house.I am trying to tell people nicley when I don,t feel like company.Their have already been days like that when I had my surgerys.And i wouldn,t tell anyone when i didn,t feel like company.It was horrible ,I would sit up hrs. and talk to them when all I really wanted was sleep.I would recomend telling them nicley.Having a maid would be wonderful.your very lucky.Take care and good luck.(Pat).

    Comedy
    Hi Pitt,
    One more idea which I used during my Chemo. My husband and I watch comedy shows and comedy films.
    Laugh is a good medicine.
    As for wine, I am not sure, I think it could interact with Chemo drugs. Ask your oncologist. I had wine to celebrate after I was done with Chemo.
    Good luck
  • TraciInLA
    TraciInLA Member Posts: 1,994 Member

    Comedy
    Hi Pitt,
    One more idea which I used during my Chemo. My husband and I watch comedy shows and comedy films.
    Laugh is a good medicine.
    As for wine, I am not sure, I think it could interact with Chemo drugs. Ask your oncologist. I had wine to celebrate after I was done with Chemo.
    Good luck

    Hi, Liz!
    I won't say that I'm "glad" to hear that you're starting chemo...but I AM glad that you're moving forward and getting prepared and approaching it with such a good attitude!

    I think I'm on the same cocktail you're doing (Taxotere + Cytoxan, every 3 weeks, + the Neulasta shot after each one), but everybody reacts a little differently, so you kind of just have to get through the first one, to see how your own body is going to react. I've kept a log of my side effects from Day 1 -- just a simple Word table with Morning, Afternoon, and Evening for each day -- and I put EVERYTHING in it. I take a copy of it for my doctor to every appointment. He loves it -- I think it really helps him see over time when I'm getting various side effects and how long they're lasting.

    Fatigue has been the longest-lasting side effect for me, and my doctor keeps lecturing me that I have to focus on moderate exercise (he recommended walking) BEFORE each chemo. So, if you're not already doing something, the next few days would be the time to make sure you take a walk or two each day.

    Also, I've always been prone to canker sores, so my doctor had me start using Biotene mouthwash (from the drugstore) before I started chemo, and I've been religious about it all the way through. I've had very few sores, so I'm glad I'm using it. It's very mild-tasting, very easy to use.

    I'll be thinking about you on Thursday, Liz -- please keep us updated on how you do!

    Traci
  • Noel
    Noel Member Posts: 3,095 Member
    Hi Liz!
    I just want to wish you good luck with your chemo on Thursday! I didn't have chemo, so, I can't offer advice to you on that, but, I know lots of others will. You just take care of yourself. I am here rooting you on!


    ♥ Noel
  • Akiss4me
    Akiss4me Member Posts: 2,188
    Hey Pitt
    I too wanted to wish you luck. I didn't have chemo either, but I really like the glass of wine idea!! My daughter donated 16" to locks of love the day I was diagnosed. She had no idea anything was wrong and just woke up that day feeling an urgency to do something for a child in need. Then stopped by to show me before shipping it off. We sat her down and told her the news. We are still in awe over the way that happened. I'm glad to see you are preparing and sound very positive. Others here will be able to give you all the good advice!! Pammy
  • Ritzy
    Ritzy Member Posts: 4,381 Member
    Akiss4me said:

    Hey Pitt
    I too wanted to wish you luck. I didn't have chemo either, but I really like the glass of wine idea!! My daughter donated 16" to locks of love the day I was diagnosed. She had no idea anything was wrong and just woke up that day feeling an urgency to do something for a child in need. Then stopped by to show me before shipping it off. We sat her down and told her the news. We are still in awe over the way that happened. I'm glad to see you are preparing and sound very positive. Others here will be able to give you all the good advice!! Pammy

    Good luck Liz with your
    Good luck Liz with your chemo! And, how sweet of you to donate your hair. Keep us posted on how you do please!

    Sue :)
  • pitt
    pitt Member Posts: 387
    TraciInLA said:

    Hi, Liz!
    I won't say that I'm "glad" to hear that you're starting chemo...but I AM glad that you're moving forward and getting prepared and approaching it with such a good attitude!

    I think I'm on the same cocktail you're doing (Taxotere + Cytoxan, every 3 weeks, + the Neulasta shot after each one), but everybody reacts a little differently, so you kind of just have to get through the first one, to see how your own body is going to react. I've kept a log of my side effects from Day 1 -- just a simple Word table with Morning, Afternoon, and Evening for each day -- and I put EVERYTHING in it. I take a copy of it for my doctor to every appointment. He loves it -- I think it really helps him see over time when I'm getting various side effects and how long they're lasting.

    Fatigue has been the longest-lasting side effect for me, and my doctor keeps lecturing me that I have to focus on moderate exercise (he recommended walking) BEFORE each chemo. So, if you're not already doing something, the next few days would be the time to make sure you take a walk or two each day.

    Also, I've always been prone to canker sores, so my doctor had me start using Biotene mouthwash (from the drugstore) before I started chemo, and I've been religious about it all the way through. I've had very few sores, so I'm glad I'm using it. It's very mild-tasting, very easy to use.

    I'll be thinking about you on Thursday, Liz -- please keep us updated on how you do!

    Traci

    A spreadsheet!!! Why didn't
    A spreadsheet!!! Why didn't I think of that?! Traci, you are my soul sister. :-) All of the advice is great. Thanks guys. Don't let the positive approach fool you though. I have had my down moments too. I try not to cry on the inside but I do find that if I have a plan then I feel a lot better. Plus I have two little kids who need to see everything is okay with mom. That helps too. As for the rest, exercise is my passion. I have been getting back into the pool but my range of motion from the lymph node biopsy is still causing me problems. Oh well - thank God I live where there is sunshine year round or I would be done for! I'll keep you posted on the chemo. I'm still in denial as I like to imagine that I'll swim through this with no problems...but just in case I have my meds and scarves! Ciao for now, Liz
  • hncroper
    hncroper Member Posts: 14
    My first treatment was this
    My first treatment was this past Wednesday. I was out of commission for 5 days. Today is my first day out of bed eating a normal if you can call it normal meal. I had BAD nausea and fatigue. I am doing the AC dose dense every two weeks (4) all together and then taxol for 14 weeks every week. I hope it gets better..... Get plenty of rest and having a great support group will help you out. I started drinking Carnation meal replacements since I lost 13 pounds and could not think to even eat food for 4 days. Drink plenty of fluids so you do not get dehydrated. Also you doctor can prescribed you nausea meds and also my doctor prescribed me xanax to help me sleep when the nausea was really bad. Hope this helps you and good luck.
  • mlmjt1
    mlmjt1 Member Posts: 537
    Hi Pitt
    I never was a swimmer but I have been a runner for the past 19 years until I was diagnosed. I also did yoga and I AM CONVINCED that the exercise is a HUGE part of getting thru chemo with much more stamina and strength. I never would have thought that the yoga poses would be a help but it strengthens my legs and though I dont have the stamina to run, I have a 10 month old golden retriever who has alot of energy and needs lots of walks.

    Stay active...but remember that you will have a few days here and there where you need to sleep and rest. Thats ok too...but keep the exercise going.

    Hang in there and know we are here for you to help you along...as for me, I have 1 more cycle then its herceptin for 1 year.

    Take care
    Linda T
  • jnl
    jnl Member Posts: 3,869 Member
    mlmjt1 said:

    Hi Pitt
    I never was a swimmer but I have been a runner for the past 19 years until I was diagnosed. I also did yoga and I AM CONVINCED that the exercise is a HUGE part of getting thru chemo with much more stamina and strength. I never would have thought that the yoga poses would be a help but it strengthens my legs and though I dont have the stamina to run, I have a 10 month old golden retriever who has alot of energy and needs lots of walks.

    Stay active...but remember that you will have a few days here and there where you need to sleep and rest. Thats ok too...but keep the exercise going.

    Hang in there and know we are here for you to help you along...as for me, I have 1 more cycle then its herceptin for 1 year.

    Take care
    Linda T

    Wishing you good luck with
    Wishing you good luck with your chemo on Thursday Liz. Post when and if you feel like it to let us know how you do.

    Leeza