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Talk to me about radiation

Posts: 41
Joined: Feb 2012

I have had 3 sessions of my radiation, I am so scared each time I get on the scanner. I ask questions and say when will I feel this and they just don't give real good answers. They say everyone is different , just need someone to tell me what to look forward too. I'm scared knowing I have 20 treatments of large area then shifting to a smaller area. Just need some words of comfort from you guys that have been through it. Thanks.

mp327's picture
Posts: 4120
Joined: Jan 2010

I know all of this is extremely scary--fear of the unknown. But please take comfort in knowing that all of us here who have been through this are here for you. Ask any questions you might have about what helped others get through this. It will not be easy, but it is SO doable! If your rad techs and docs can not give you much advice on what products to use to help with any discomfort, then ask here! There will be some rough days, but you will get through it. Just take one day at a time and cross them off a calendar to show your progress. When you feel up to it, get out of the house, even if it's just to walk to the mailbox and back. I found that watching funny shows on TV was a great distraction--King of Queens was my favorite. Surround yourself with whatever makes you comfortable. I know you can do this. Soon you'll be crossing the finish line and the healing will begin! I will keep you in my thoughts and prayers.

sandysp's picture
Posts: 862
Joined: May 2011

Oh gosh that sounds so familiar. That's what they told me too, "that everyone is different." But what amazes me is that here, we seem to have had quite a bit in common. One thing that I noticed was the first week into the treatments I felt better. My doctor said, "well that's because you had cancer." I loved that part when she said "had". Like I learned here is the common experience, after that it got worse for me, but then slowly better. I was T2N1 when diagnosed and very symptomatic. I feel better than I have in years most of the time now. But I need a lot of rest. My last tx was August 15, 2011. I am cancer free.

Posts: 563
Joined: Apr 2011

Every time I got on that machine, I prayed and prayed like I never had before. He carried m thru it. U will make it. Lean on people, us, anyone. One day at a time. Really laughter helps, I love lucy helped. It will be over soon.

Posts: 21
Joined: Sep 2011

If you get too uncomfortable don't be afraid to ask for pain medication. I was on it for the side effects of the chemo, and I noticed that when the burns came they were less painful. Also there are a lot of creams you can use later on. But you will get through it, it's a little tough but you will be fine.

Dog Girl
Posts: 100
Joined: Sep 2010

I think you probably have a couple of weeks before you MAY start to see any side effects, so try not to borrow trouble. Easier said than done I know cuz like most on this board I have been there, done that. I think I read from previous posts that week 3 was the earliest anyone had radiation side effects (such as burns; fatigue is likely as well) and for many it is not until week 4 or 5 before the trouble starts and then you may have 1-2 bad weeks after treatment ends. Again in the greater scheme of things not a long time to suffer in order to save your life. Try to keep that in mind. I saw my rad dr once a week, but when I started having skin breakdown at my bikini line, I asked to see the doctor and they prescribed creme for me. Silvadene I believe and you will read on here of other stuff that has worked for others. Aquaphor is still my friend. (Be absolutely sure to remove all cream before radiation though. If left on it can make the burns worse.) Take it with you and put it on at the rad office just after treatment. You'll probably need to pee too as you should go into rad with a full bladder. I suggest you go commando or wear boxer type underwear as much as possible. Near the end of my tx I just wore gowns without underwear and I would just sit on soft towells when I sat down. My rad office gave me big oversized scrub shorts that they give to men who are having prostate rad. That is what I would wear to the rad tx, but that is also the only place I was going at the time; doctor's visit. As suggested above, don't try to be a hero. If you need pain meds ask for them, because they just don't offer them. Good luck; it may be rought, but you WILL get through this!

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