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Dexamethasone

GaryinUK
Posts: 63
Joined: Feb 2011

Hi

Any one here able to tell me their experience with this steroid. I am looking to find out how long people have taken it, any side effects, benefits they got from it?

I know there is some information elsewhere on this site, but I am looking in relation to Colon cancer.

Thanks in advance

Regards

Gary

plh4gail's picture
plh4gail
Posts: 1238
Joined: Oct 2010

Are you talking about receiving it during chemo treatment? At this time it is supposed to help reduce the chemo side effects. I still get the side effects. But I do get compliments on what great color I have while going through cancer treatment! ....that's because the decadrom makes my face flushed and rosy the first week of my treatments. It can also help to increase your appetite.

Gail

GaryinUK
Posts: 63
Joined: Feb 2011

Gail

My partner was taking it to increase his appetite, he is not on treatment at present.

He did 2.5 weeks at 4mg, 1.5 weeks at 2mg, now on 2mg every other day and has gone from, hungry, energetic, good moods when on 4mg to back to before he started, no appetite, feeling sick and not good moods.

I think the period was quite short. I get the impression it can be taken for quite some time.

Gary

plh4gail's picture
plh4gail
Posts: 1238
Joined: Oct 2010

I have gained 10 pounds since December while on chemo!!! lol

Love and hugs, Gail

and it does give some color to you too :)

scouty's picture
scouty
Posts: 1976
Joined: Apr 2004

Gary,

You said your partner took it daily for a month and is now taking it every other day, right? I think that is very different from those of us that had it just before chemo or a few days afterwards. Long term side effects of steriods are very different from short term ones.

Why is he is on it so often?

I always came home from my initial infusion with it, the anti-nausea and oxi, leucovorin, a bolus of 5FU (folfox) and avastin "bouncing off the walls" and not being able to sleep. I only took Dex before my chemo and other than that I don't remember any side effects but then again with all the chemo and other drugs I took I have no idea what was doing what, especially over time.

Lisa P.

SisterSledge's picture
SisterSledge
Posts: 342
Joined: Feb 2011

I'm taking Dexamethasone within my chemo mix...the steroid is added to combat nausea.

My reactions to it have been fairly mild and do differ from week to week:
Some weeks I feel a lot of extra energy that begins as the steroid drips to me and lasts about 24 hours (this is the good part).
Every week I have water retention that is worst the night of the chemo and the second day. A few times when I awoke the day after chemo, my face was swollen and my eyes were almost shut from swelling around them. My doc just decreased the amount of fluids given with chemo and it did seem to lessen the water retention. He offered to also decrease the steroid at the same time, as he thinks it may be causing the water retention too, but I felt best to only change one factor at a time, so went with less fluids.

Hope that helps :)
Janine

GaryinUK
Posts: 63
Joined: Feb 2011

Janine

Thanks for your reply. I hope your treatment works and your water retention issue gets sorted.

Gary

pete43lost_at_sea's picture
pete43lost_at_sea
Posts: 3908
Joined: Nov 2010

hi gary,

following on from janine about fluid which probably did.

for me i think it picked up the appetite for food and other earthly pleasures.

so it was not to bad. often had nights where i could not sleep. this board is great then 24 hour avilablity.

the temper and rage, well yes for me. so my onc so dropped it to 1/2 a dex and it was better.

some people have had intense bitter experiences that i have heard ended in suicide. our mental state should be carefully watched when on dex.

another area where onc don't warn enough in my humble opinion. mine did not. i suspect yours did not either. they talk the chemo side effects but not the cocktail of surrounding drugs.

hugs,
pete

maglets's picture
maglets
Posts: 2596
Joined: Jun 2006

I was on Dex with my chemo....that was oxalyplatin and xeloda....

i cannot remember what dose it was but i took it twice a day for two days after the infusion

I think my worst side effect was sleeplessness

i did not seem to fall into a deep sleep at all for about 3 nights with the dexy

maggie

herdizziness's picture
herdizziness
Posts: 3642
Joined: Apr 2010

I'm just pretty much going to mirror Mags. I felt full of energy the first day and was fine from there on out. I believe it was the Dex that gave me the energy, I'd come home and do my household chores, enjoyed it while it lasted. Although I did notice I was grumpy right after the infusion for an hour or so, then that went away. No fluid retention or anything. I of course was only on it every 3 weeks for my Oxy and Xeloda, so I can't tell you anything about the long term. Sorry about that.
Winter Marie

GaryinUK
Posts: 63
Joined: Feb 2011

All who have replied

Thank you, the difference is that my partner is not on Chemo, he was given it after a trial went badly and he stopped eating and lost a lot of weight.

He was on 4mg for only about 2 weeks.

I think he may go back on it, as he was significantly better on it than he has been over the past couple of days.

The dose is low and he has not had any problems with any side effects, mentally he is doing ok on it and physically much better.

I was hoping someone else was taking it other than on Chemo, but it seems not. When he was on Chemo he tolerated the treatment so well I was joking that he was on a placebo.

Regards

Gary

pokismom's picture
pokismom
Posts: 153
Joined: Jul 2009

Hi,
Funny I was lurking on the board and found your post. I was on Dex with my folfox first time around but didn't really understand it, so one night I'm like amping, pacing and thought I was going off my rockers.... Dex. I had my Dr cut back to half the amount but always had to take some Ativan to calm down also, otherwise I'd get panic attacks. Okay so fast forward to present day, first round of folfiri with avastin last Thursday, I asked the doc again cut the Dex to half cuz I know how it affects me and wham I couldn't stop throwing up the next two days so I go in to disconnect and he gives me more Dex, ugh, I thought I was climbing the walls, and I'm so hungry can't stop thinking bout food. Start taking the Ativan again to take the edge off but I still feel hyped and it's already Tuesday. I'm cleaning a lot and cooking but I hate this feeling, wonder if there's something else for the nausea? I think this will be very difficult for me to take continuously so gonna talk to my Doc once again.

pete43lost_at_sea's picture
pete43lost_at_sea
Posts: 3908
Joined: Nov 2010

Not sure if its good for your chemo but you could ask.
emend is supposed to be the best anti nausea drug for my folfox, not sure if its used on other chemos.

lets us know how you get on. I am glad I am not the only one who had some strange dex experiecnes.

goodluck,
pete

pokismom's picture
pokismom
Posts: 153
Joined: Jul 2009

Thanks Pete,
I did ask my Doc about emend, he said they would have to get insurance approval, but sounds like a plan for me.
Will keep you posted!
Donna

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