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Chemo or viral that is the question?

KierstenRx's picture
Posts: 249
Joined: Nov 2006

Hi all,
Started my chemo of FOLFOX on Monday (they will be adding Avastin next go around). Was not feeling real great the weekend before chemo (had surgery Feb. 5, on antibiotics for incision infection). Anyway had chemo and did ok, however the following morning woke up horribly nauseated. I met with my surgeon that morning to remove my stitches and he said my infection was healing well. After I got home I stayed in bed nauseated which proceeded to vomiting the next day. I was able to keep down fluids, but that was it. Had a very low grade fever. My blood counts before chemo were fine, I was give Aloxi before chemo for nausea and vomiting and have been taking zofran and phenergan. My Dr was surprised I was feeling that sick. I did fine with 5fu and radiation. Did any of you experience this or do you feel like I may have had something viral. A lot of flu is going around here and even today I still feel weak. I am really worried about making it through 7 more chemo's if I am going to be this sick. Any advice??? Thanks for your comments.


JADot's picture
Posts: 720
Joined: Jan 2006


So sorry to hear you're having such a hard time. The things is that chemo can lower the WBC count which might have been elevanted by an infection, making WBC count an unrelaible marker for this time for you.

When I went through Folfox, I opted out of most of the nausea drugs, so I threw up a lot - that meaning throwing up twice a day for 3 days. And I was horribly nauseated on those days. If you throw up constantly, then you really need to make sure you don't get dyhydrated, you need to drink water, or better, so sports drinks with electrolytes. Ask you Dr. to see if you should head for an emergency room to get an IV in.

The only other 2 times when I threw up 5-6 times a day/night, I was near bowel obstruction. They looked a lot like stomach flu at the time. But I don't think that's your problem right now though.

Good luck to you!

jams67's picture
Posts: 927
Joined: May 2006

I wasn't as nauseated as you are, but I remember feeling pretty rotten after the first treatment. It got somewhat better after that. Hang in there.

Posts: 135
Joined: Oct 2006

Hi, I had folfox and needed to add "Emend" (very expensive but Ins covered it) to the Zofran and aloxi. Emend is 1 pill for three days starting early am the day of chemo....made a big difference for me. Hope this helps!

chynabear's picture
Posts: 483
Joined: Jul 2005

I reacted differently to each and every one of my treatments. I did get very sick with a couple of them, but mainly I did ok. My onc prescribed me two different anti-nausea meds - a mild, inexpensive one and a heavy-duty (very expensive $7 per pill after insurance) one. At the first indication of nausea, I would take a light one and that usually did the trick. Make sure it is nothing more serious, though. Hang in there, this to shall pass.

Posts: 719
Joined: Feb 2005

Emend was my lifesaver - literally. I could not tolerate much else. It does the trick! Hope your recovery days come very soon. Thinking of you - Maura

katefm's picture
Posts: 112
Joined: Oct 2006


Jim just added Emend to his anti-nausea regimen, and it really seemed to help him as well. It's hard to tell whether you have the flu, but Ying is right - make sure you're well hydrated. Jim sometimes can't tolerate water so he drinks Gatorade or water with lots of lemon juice.

I wish you the best of luck. You cna make it through - it's a matter of finding the right combination of anti-nausea meds.


Posts: 1961
Joined: Aug 2003

I'm on FOLFOX for the second time (this time with Avastin). Both times, I felt really bad after the first cycle, but it got better after that (not GREAT but a lot better!). I think it was just my body saying "what the #*##$#". I hope this is the case for you -- that it gets better. Good luck with antinausea meds

Posts: 42
Joined: Dec 2005

emend also helped my daughter ALOT. also, she had a really tough time drinking enough because everything tasted "funny." she came up with the idea of having some iv fluids given to her by the home infusion nurse after she was unhooked from the 5fu (every 2 weeks). that worked wonders for her. good luck and hang in there. hopefully you're feeling better by now.

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