Chemo and constipation

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Hi everyone,

New here and have been reading older posts. I start chemo on Monday and several have talked about constipation afterwards. I am still healing from my hysterectomy, so constipation at this time would be extremely uncomfortable  Should I take the  stool softener or dulcolax the morning of my chemo?  I was given the stool softener after leaving the hospital for the hysterectomy but have not needed to take it.

Thanks,

Sue

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Comments

  • Lou Ann M
    Lou Ann M Member Posts: 996 Member
    edited December 2016 #2
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    Hi, Sue

    Yes,  and you might want to add Miralax to that also.  Many have used it the day before and for a few days after chemo.  It is what my doctor recommended .  Chemo constipation is not fun and you want to avoid it if at all possbile.  I have read where some take it twice a day to get the job done.  By the way, chemo nurses are usually very nice and can answer many questions that you might have.  Remember you are strong and you can do this.

    Hugs and prayers, Lou Ann

  • Editgrl
    Editgrl Member Posts: 903 Member
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    I'd be proactive and start at

    I'd be proactive and start at least a day before chemo with Miralax and/or a stool softener and keep using it, maybe until the first post chemo bowel movement.  Drink lots of water or juices, and if you're a fan of dates and prunes, snack on them. I also used Smooth Move tea a couple of times. I can honestly say that chemo gave me the worst constipation of my life the first round.  The second round was not as bad after I started preparing ahead of time though it was still an issue, and by the time round 3 came around, things were much better.  In any case, things usually got back to normal by the end of the first week.  

  • MAbound
    MAbound Member Posts: 1,168 Member
    edited December 2016 #4
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    Bowel Regimen

    First of all, plan on drinking plenty of water all through chemo....like 8-12 glass/day. That's crucial to protect your bladder from irritation by the chemo drugs and to help with the constipation issue.

    Second, ask your doctor or chemo nurses if they have a bowel regimen they recommend to their patients. Mine recommended staying on a low fiber diet because fiber doesn't work like it normally does on chemo and can actually cause a blockage. The chemo drugs used are neuro toxic; that's what causes the constipation and the nerves don't react to bulking agents like they normally do to stimulate the intestines to move.  The other thing they had me do was take Miralax twice daily all through chemo and Senekot-S as needed when that wasn't always enough. That kept things pretty comfortable for me except for a day or two when I had my infusions. Then, nothing seemed to work until the other side effects kicked in.

    I know other ladies here didn't do the low fiber diet and I cheated at times because sometimes a simple salad was something that I could handle eating... just be careful about it to see how that goes for you first. It helps to be in tune with what works best for you.

  • CheeseQueen57
    CheeseQueen57 Member Posts: 933 Member
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    I second all recommendations

    Thanks to this group I suffered very little constipation because I did the Miralax (it's truly magical) and stool softener routine. Be sure to drink the water because burning pee is not fun. You might also want to get some Gas-X because chemo farts can be deadly to those around you. 

  • Editgrl
    Editgrl Member Posts: 903 Member
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    Chemo farts!!!

    They are the worst!  One evening I even refused to let my BF come over because they were so bad lol!

  • Lou Ann M
    Lou Ann M Member Posts: 996 Member
    edited December 2016 #7
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    I second all recommendations

    Thanks to this group I suffered very little constipation because I did the Miralax (it's truly magical) and stool softener routine. Be sure to drink the water because burning pee is not fun. You might also want to get some Gas-X because chemo farts can be deadly to those around you. 

    New picture!

    Look at you ringing the that bell.  Congradulation.  Maybe this,was,here before, but I just noticed it.

    Hugs and prayers, Lou Ann

  • EZLiving66
    EZLiving66 Member Posts: 1,483 Member
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    I, on the other hand, had

    I, on the other hand, had terrible diarrhea from the chemo.  It probably didn't help that I took the Miralax - LOL!  After the first chemo, I had to take Immodium to stop it and after that never took Miralax again.  I have no idea why my body reacted like that but I did read on the Uterine Cancer Facebook page about another woman who had severe diarrhea from chemo.  I think it's rare, but it does happen.

    Good luck and I would listen to the Miralax ladies because they're probably in the 99% of side effects.

    Love,

    Eldri

  • EZLiving66
    EZLiving66 Member Posts: 1,483 Member
    edited December 2016 #9
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    I second all recommendations

    Thanks to this group I suffered very little constipation because I did the Miralax (it's truly magical) and stool softener routine. Be sure to drink the water because burning pee is not fun. You might also want to get some Gas-X because chemo farts can be deadly to those around you. 

    Hey, Susan, the Queen of

    Hey, Susan, the Queen of Cheese, I love your new picture!!

    Love,

    Eldri

  • MAbound
    MAbound Member Posts: 1,168 Member
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    Laughs

    I love when the humorous if found during all of this! Chemo brain, now chemo farts! LMAO! ;-)

  • NoTimeForCancer
    NoTimeForCancer Member Posts: 3,385 Member
    edited December 2016 #11
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    Editgrl said:

    I'd be proactive and start at

    I'd be proactive and start at least a day before chemo with Miralax and/or a stool softener and keep using it, maybe until the first post chemo bowel movement.  Drink lots of water or juices, and if you're a fan of dates and prunes, snack on them. I also used Smooth Move tea a couple of times. I can honestly say that chemo gave me the worst constipation of my life the first round.  The second round was not as bad after I started preparing ahead of time though it was still an issue, and by the time round 3 came around, things were much better.  In any case, things usually got back to normal by the end of the first week.  

    I agree with Chris and other

    I agree with Chris and other ladies about taking Miralax the day before and a few days after.  I never knew chemo constipates, but I never knew it hardens your veins too, which made sticking me for chemo a big challenge one of the six times (I did not have a port).  As I heard in one cancer center area, "Miralax is a miracle".  I also drank Gatroade to replenish some of the body electrolytes that were being washed out from all the liquid intake.  I didn't have chemo farts, but I guess that is a real possibility.  You can do it!

  • Kvdyson
    Kvdyson Member Posts: 790 Member
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    I second all recommendations

    Thanks to this group I suffered very little constipation because I did the Miralax (it's truly magical) and stool softener routine. Be sure to drink the water because burning pee is not fun. You might also want to get some Gas-X because chemo farts can be deadly to those around you. 

    Susan, love the picture of

    Susan, love the picture of you ringing the bell - congrats to you!! Kim

  • TinyHouseSurvivor
    TinyHouseSurvivor Member Posts: 6
    edited January 2017 #13
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    Yakima Fruit Spread

    i am new to this group but wanted to contribute a wholistic remedy that's working for me.  My mom home health care nurse recommended it-she used it during Chemo and used in a nursing home she worked in.  It's a mixture of prunes, raisins, figs, senna teA, lemon juice and sweetener of your choice.  I use coconut sugar.  2 tablespoons a day is working for me.  If you google Yakima fruit spread, the exact recipe will come up.

  • TeddyandBears_Mom
    TeddyandBears_Mom Member Posts: 1,814 Member
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    Welcome TinyHouse and thanks

    Welcome TinyHouse and thanks for the tip! I hope all is going well for you.

    Love and Hugs,

    Cindi

  • MAbound
    MAbound Member Posts: 1,168 Member
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    Yakima Fruit Spread

    i am new to this group but wanted to contribute a wholistic remedy that's working for me.  My mom home health care nurse recommended it-she used it during Chemo and used in a nursing home she worked in.  It's a mixture of prunes, raisins, figs, senna teA, lemon juice and sweetener of your choice.  I use coconut sugar.  2 tablespoons a day is working for me.  If you google Yakima fruit spread, the exact recipe will come up.

    Welcome

    Welcome to our group. Such a helpful first post! Thank you!  What's happening with you, if I may ask?

  • derMaus
    derMaus Member Posts: 558 Member
    edited January 2017 #16
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    Senokot

    I used Miralax 2x days before chemo and 1x day after, and wound up with diarreha. A nurse told me it's pretty strong and recommended I try Senokot instead; one dose cleared up my problems. I'd never heard of it before but it's been a godsend for me. 

  • Nellasing
    Nellasing Member Posts: 528 Member
    edited January 2017 #17
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    Welcome TinyHouse

    Thank you for that great tip- it was always SO BAD dealing with that problem and I could of used that info.  Hope all is going well with you.  Keep us posted.  (((HUGS)))

  • TinyHouseSurvivor
    Options
    MAbound said:

    Welcome

    Welcome to our group. Such a helpful first post! Thank you!  What's happening with you, if I may ask?

    Introduction

    I'm Laurie from San Antonio TX. Sixty-three years old.  Single. No dependents except my mom who is 88 and lives with me.  On Nov 22, I was diagnosed with stage 3 endometrial papillary serous.  My care plan calls for taxol/carbo three rounds, surgery and more Chemo. I've had one round of chemo with another scheduled for Jan 10.  Not too many side effects so far.  A little nausea which I have controlled with homeopathy remedies. My sister-in-law is a homeopathic practitioner so she is consulting with me.  A little neuropathy which just started in my left foot yesterday. No hair loss yet-but I'm looking forward to going back to my natural hair color when that happens.  My doctor at University Hospital encourages combining alternative treatments with allopathic medicine treatments. I've been using my FAR infrared sauna and pancreatic enzymes, too.  I have been on a paleo eating plan for over five years (lost 85 pounds) so glucose control is something I've been doing too.

     

    As strange as it sounds, I am thankful this happened.  I have closed my business-I was self-employed for 14 years.  I started collecting social security and applied for disability to increase the amount to 100%. I own land in a small town and intend to build my tiny house for retirement there.  And I'm looking for my next hobby/occupation.  I have too much to do for this to get in my way!

  • Lou Ann M
    Lou Ann M Member Posts: 996 Member
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    Hi, Laurie

    Welcome to the club that no one wants to belong to.  You found a good place to come.  This is a great place for support, information and understanding.  

    Hugs and prayers, Lou Ann

  • EZLiving66
    EZLiving66 Member Posts: 1,483 Member
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    Introduction

    I'm Laurie from San Antonio TX. Sixty-three years old.  Single. No dependents except my mom who is 88 and lives with me.  On Nov 22, I was diagnosed with stage 3 endometrial papillary serous.  My care plan calls for taxol/carbo three rounds, surgery and more Chemo. I've had one round of chemo with another scheduled for Jan 10.  Not too many side effects so far.  A little nausea which I have controlled with homeopathy remedies. My sister-in-law is a homeopathic practitioner so she is consulting with me.  A little neuropathy which just started in my left foot yesterday. No hair loss yet-but I'm looking forward to going back to my natural hair color when that happens.  My doctor at University Hospital encourages combining alternative treatments with allopathic medicine treatments. I've been using my FAR infrared sauna and pancreatic enzymes, too.  I have been on a paleo eating plan for over five years (lost 85 pounds) so glucose control is something I've been doing too.

     

    As strange as it sounds, I am thankful this happened.  I have closed my business-I was self-employed for 14 years.  I started collecting social security and applied for disability to increase the amount to 100%. I own land in a small town and intend to build my tiny house for retirement there.  And I'm looking for my next hobby/occupation.  I have too much to do for this to get in my way!

    Welcome, Laurie!  Welcome to

    Welcome, Laurie!  Welcome to the group!  I have Stage II, UPSC.  So far, after surgery and chemo, I'm still NED.  I hope this regiment works for you!  I'm intrigued by the idea of tiny houses.  It certainly is an interesting concept.  Please keep us updated on your treatment AND your tiny house.

    Love,

    Eldri

  • Nellasing
    Nellasing Member Posts: 528 Member
    edited January 2017 #21
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    Introduction

    I'm Laurie from San Antonio TX. Sixty-three years old.  Single. No dependents except my mom who is 88 and lives with me.  On Nov 22, I was diagnosed with stage 3 endometrial papillary serous.  My care plan calls for taxol/carbo three rounds, surgery and more Chemo. I've had one round of chemo with another scheduled for Jan 10.  Not too many side effects so far.  A little nausea which I have controlled with homeopathy remedies. My sister-in-law is a homeopathic practitioner so she is consulting with me.  A little neuropathy which just started in my left foot yesterday. No hair loss yet-but I'm looking forward to going back to my natural hair color when that happens.  My doctor at University Hospital encourages combining alternative treatments with allopathic medicine treatments. I've been using my FAR infrared sauna and pancreatic enzymes, too.  I have been on a paleo eating plan for over five years (lost 85 pounds) so glucose control is something I've been doing too.

     

    As strange as it sounds, I am thankful this happened.  I have closed my business-I was self-employed for 14 years.  I started collecting social security and applied for disability to increase the amount to 100%. I own land in a small town and intend to build my tiny house for retirement there.  And I'm looking for my next hobby/occupation.  I have too much to do for this to get in my way!

    Hi Laurie,

    Look at your go!!!!  Wow!  I am so impressed with your take charge attitude and will be cheering you on from the sideline!  You are going to do great - look at all the wonderful things you are already doing for yourself Laughing  Keep us posted and let us know how things go.  (((HUGS)))