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Is Chemo Dangerous for Caregivers?

Posts: 3
Joined: Aug 2010

My partner's doctors have told us to be careful around her tears or sweat when she has been given chemotherapy in the last 48 hours becuase it could cause chemo burn or be harmful to other people. At the same time, they say it's fine for me to hug and touch her as long as she isn't sweating heavily. She doesn't trust her doctors becuase they have given her a lot of conflicting information recently and she's now worried that she's going to harm me or make me sick if she touches me.

I haven't been able to find any information about this online so I was hoping someone here could point me in the direction of some information on the topic or talk about their personal experiences on this topic.

abrub's picture
Posts: 1843
Joined: Mar 2010

As I recall, even making love was not a problem (not that it was possible with the pump hooked up). My husband and I took few if any "contact' precautions. I had Folfox + Avastin (for colorectal cancer)

Posts: 710
Joined: Mar 2010

I swear as if you don't have enough to deal with now dr. wants to scare you with "can't touch the chemo patient" Never read, heard or was told that by my dr. I was the chemo patient, and believe me when one is going thru the hell chemo brings you don't want anyone on you, it hurts just to be touched. My dr. did say to use condoms when we had sex, but that was all.
Doctors give alot of conflicting info. and it is difficult to trust him/her.
I wish you and your partner the very best.

Posts: 1154
Joined: Jun 2010

It is called chemo transfer. The biggest thing is that you have to be careful around bodily fluids and if the port leaks, don't touch the liquid. My sister specifically asked this question because she has a toddler. This sounds like a big issue, but it really isn't hard to do.

We have designated a bathroom for my mom for this reason and to make sure that she isn't getting germs from everyone else since chemo compromises the immune system. She has her own bathroom and no one else can use it. It is easier to keep it chemo clean that way.

We also keep latex gloves around the house in case we need to clean up if mom gets sick and we have to clean it up.
My mother has indicted that even on her off chemo weeks, she notices discoloration and black smudges on her white towels from chemo seeping from her pores.

kimmygarland's picture
Posts: 313
Joined: Aug 2009

This nor anything remotely close to a conversation on this subject came up while my husband was having chemo.

zinniemay's picture
Posts: 534
Joined: Mar 2009

When my husband has (and had) Chemo his urine becomes darker,almost a red color, So I asked about his urine why it was like that . I was told that for days after you have Chemo the chemicals leave the body.So it effects the color of his urine. The Chemo is not strong as since it is a mixture of body fluids and the drugs. I do know when they come in to give him Chemo they "Suit up" but when he is done. They just come and take the needle out. So I wonder why they don't suit up in the end of the process. I know not much help but it is my two cents.

Posts: 17
Joined: Aug 2010

The only thing that the doc told us was condoms for sex. My DH has testicular cancer.

grandmafay's picture
Posts: 1639
Joined: Aug 2009

I am guessing it depends on the chemo. This was never mentioned to us and my husband was on chemo several different times and a couple of different chemos. I am sure our chemo nurses would have mentioned it if it was a real concern. Fay

Posts: 1154
Joined: Jun 2010

Doctors won't volunteer much of anything by the wAy of information. )Ou have to look it up and research it yourself then bring it to their attention.

geotina's picture
Posts: 2116
Joined: Oct 2009

Nothing mentioned to us. Hubby has colorectal cancer and was on Folfox. I have read, perhaps on the Colon Club site, that for the first 48 hours, use a condom, otherwise good to go sex wise. If you have a chemo pump attached for the 48 hours obviously if there is any leak do not touch the chemicals with bare hands and get to an ER so they can fix things up. At the chemo lab where chemo is administered, they ask chemo patients to double flush. I have never heard of chemo leaking out of the body through sweat and such but just be careful the first 48 hours I guess.


webozo's picture
Posts: 82
Joined: Feb 2010

jackie had to be carefull she had to watch if sweat alot had to flush twice and not to get any of the chemo on her kids or dan she would sweat really bad and it all most had a pinkish color to it she was on some really strong chemo

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