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Getting Started

John oldtmr
Posts: 33
Joined: Jun 2009

Hi Everyone,

Had my loading dose of Erbitux yesterday. They gave me a small bag of Benedryl first, and it knocked me out for 2hrs. Nothing seemed to bother other than being tired.

Today was a full day. Had consult with PEG doc, then got head rest and mask made, and CAT scan for mapping. The PEG doc had set me up for tube on Mon. at 8am, so went and got blood work and EKG done for that. Unless someone comes up with something new I'm off 'till Mon.

Didn't have any problem with the mask. The tech. girl said it would feel like a warm facial (which I've never had) so I just kept my eyes closed and didn't have any problems. Of course I'm not claustrophobic. If it had been my wife they would have had to knock her out.

I was supposed to have 2nd dose of Erbitux Mon., but that's on hold right now, so don't know when I'll start radiation. They had started out saying that I'd start on Mon.,but now have to do mapping, then dry run. Hope they put it back a couple of days after the PEG tube.

Met a guy yesterday at infusion center that will be done next Tue. He went through 35 treatments and Erbitux. Pet scan showed there was still some in lymph nodes so getting more treatments, can't remember how many, but 2 times a day. He told me quite a lot and was sipping water steady, so that made me feel better too.

Well hang in there everyone!!!

Glenna M's picture
Glenna M
Posts: 1576
Joined: May 2009

Hi John, Congrats on getting through having the mask made. Fortunately, as you said, you are not claustrophobic because it can be scary for those of us who are :) It sounds like you have had a busy week and are well on your way to getting started with treatment.

Rest up and enjoy your weekend as it sounds like you will be busy again next week.

Wishing you the best in your upcoming treatments and will be thinking of you and your wife.


John oldtmr
Posts: 33
Joined: Jun 2009

Hey Everyone,

They weren't kidding about the rash. It hit today. Itches like crazy across the top of my stomach. Told my chemo nurse and she said they had 2 types of creme and she called in a prescription. We'll see how this goes. I've never been bothered with hives or any thing, so should be exciting. Oh, she said to take Benedryll, so am trying that.


jkinobay's picture
Posts: 254
Joined: May 2007

Congratulations on a successful kickoff of your campaign against a formidable force. The great news is that you very apparently have what my Oncology Team said was the key ingredient for 2/3 of the goal which is attitude. You will note on these boards that not everyone is as confident and aggressive as you. All of us try to be tough but it is easy to wane because this truly is a fight for your life.

The other 1/3rd ingredient for success? That will be up to your Oncology Team (Chemo, Rad,etc.). So do what they tell you, ask a lot of questions, get in a support group, stay plugged in here, and you will do well.

Before long you will be advising and supporting others that are new to this struggle.

Tell yourself daily that you can and have-to do this. The fact that it is SCC is in your favor. The fact that you caught it early is great. And, as my OT said if you have to have cancer, this is the one because with medical technology available the survival rate is much higher than many others.

Keep us posted, God Bless and "git ur dun"!!


John oldtmr
Posts: 33
Joined: Jun 2009

Thanks a bundle for you're support. I'm probably over confident, but really feel I can beat this!! Just hope I don't get in the middle of it and lose the confidence.

I've got all of you and this site to thank for everything. Thanks to you guys I knew what to ask the docs, and more importantly, what to expect. I really like my whole team and they are just great. Won't lie, am a little apprehensive about the PEG, but am sure I can do it.

Thank You


pmfennell's picture
Posts: 28
Joined: Jun 2009

Hi John

I am a six year survivor of SCC and doing well. I had the G-Tube put in right away when I began TX and was glad I did. It was a little uncomfortable, but the pain MEDS and the team did a great job of helping me to relax and relieve the pain. I had to have my tube moved because I get nauseous easy. They put it in my lower intestine and I did not have any further trouble. I was glad I had it because several weeks into the TX I relied on it heavily. It is no big deal to use once you get use to it. I did my feedings through the tube overnight and used my mouth to eat and swallow during the day. It is very important to keep eating through your mouth even if it is a little as a time. I drank many high protein shakes about 2000 calories a piece and really enjoyed them and felt full after drinking one. Also, I drank a lot of "Sleepy Time Tea" it was warm and made my throat feel better. Good luck and keep a positive attitude. This will be behind you before you know it.


John oldtmr
Posts: 33
Joined: Jun 2009

Thanks Pete,

I know I can do this. More not knowing about what's coming than anything. After I get into it, it's like a new adventure. Thank you again. Every bit of info helps a whole lot, and I know more about what to expect.

Thanks Again,

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