Rituxan scheduled

chrismc
chrismc Member Posts: 53
I had an appt with my Hemotologist Onc. today and he gave me two options. I could do watchful waiting or 4 wks of Rituxan once each wk. He said if I wanted to wait to decide until the first of the year that would be fine. My Dr. is very young so I asked him what he would recommend if I was his mother, and he said Rituxan. I really had that on my mind before he gave me his answer. I felt there was no need to wait so everything is set up for me to have my first infusion on Nov. 16th. and for the following 3 fridays.

Before today, although I knew that I had Lymphoma, I had no symptoms so reality didn't really set in. However today as I was talking with my Dr. and then scheduling my treatments, reality finally hit. Yes I am a scared of treatment, but I think most of this is because I am going to the unknown to a path never traveled. This could be much worse, and I have made it this far through the hysterectomy for the endometrial cancer so I can do this.

I would appreciate info from anyone who has been treated with Rituxan as far as there experiences or tips on how to handle this.

Chris
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Comments

  • tall floridian
    tall floridian Member Posts: 95
    Rituxan
    Chris I went through 6 rounds of Rituxan without alot of problems. A little nausea and some days not wanting to eat much- my wife's fav meals for me were chicken noodle soup (homemade) and crackers. It all went well thank God - I'm now in remission and off chemo. God bless you as you proceed on your journey to recovery - will pray for you - hugs Steve
  • allmost60
    allmost60 Member Posts: 3,178
    Rituxan
    Hi Chris,
    I have been on Rituxan maint for nearly 2 years...1 infusion every other month. I have 2 infusions left, one in December and one in February and then I'm done. The first week of March I'll get my CT scan to see if I'm clean and from then on I'll be doing watchful waiting along with bi-monthly blood draws and 3 month Onc visits. My doctor wants me to leave my port in for blood draws, so I'll still need to go in and get it flushed, which is no big deal for me. Fatigue and joint pain has been the only complaint I have had while doing my Rituxan maint. I'm hoping after I've finished my infusions I will see my energy pick up...time will tell. I hope all goes well for you and please feel free to ask questions anytime. My prayers are with you...Much love...Sue
    (FNHL-2-3A-6/10)
  • mchurch
    mchurch Member Posts: 5
    Rituxan (Retuximab)
    I was DXed with esophageal cancer in Mar 09 and underwent a trans-hiatal esophagectomy removing a 5mm adenocarcinoma with no metastisis, very good. At the same time I was DXed with CLL chronic lymphotic leukemia, I've also heard some doctors refer to my symptoms as lymphoma, sounds to me like a different way of pronouncing potato. They've been watching this since, but in the last six months lymph nodes have been growing all over, plus spleen enlargement and abdominal cramps. Last week, starting Tues. Oct.23 I started Rituxan, followed by Fludarabine and Cyclophosphamide the following 3 days to make sure I could tolerate it.
    Rituxin is an anti-clonal monobody that attacks the cancer. There is a slight risk of allergic reaction so they will give you an anti-histamine like Zyrtec 1 hour before your infusion. They start it very slowly maybe 50mg per hr. then increase it as you tolerate it better.
    During my first treatment my enlarged lymph nodes reduced dramatically and by the end of the infusion I felt very, very good, the best in months. The rest of the chemo went very well. This week I've felt pretty good, some days a little tired but overall good, with a really good appetite.
    I think you are going to like the results from the Rituxin. Stay positive.
  • po18guy
    po18guy Member Posts: 1,261 Member
    Second opinion!
    Since you have a choice between treating and waiting, this implies that each choice has a risk involved. Since your doctor is quite young, I would think it proper to obtain a second opinion from another, perhaps more experienced, doctor. A second opinion saved my life, and one might well allow you to make a better decision.

    As to Rituxan, it seems that it is a fairly easy ride, unless you are allergic to it. Even then, there are alternatives.
  • Max Former Hodgkins Stage 3
    Max Former Hodgkins Stage 3 Member Posts: 3,721 Member
    po18guy said:

    Second opinion!
    Since you have a choice between treating and waiting, this implies that each choice has a risk involved. Since your doctor is quite young, I would think it proper to obtain a second opinion from another, perhaps more experienced, doctor. A second opinion saved my life, and one might well allow you to make a better decision.

    As to Rituxan, it seems that it is a fairly easy ride, unless you are allergic to it. Even then, there are alternatives.

    Choice
    Chris,

    I would definitely go ahead and start the Rituxan, given your options. It seems better to do something rather than nothing.

    Rituxan is one of the mildest chemo experiences in the chemo bag of tricks. It may be THE mildest. It made me feel fluish most of the time, but not everyone has this response to it. Also, it does not cause hair loss or some of the other chemo common reactions, like neuropathy, etc. Ask about an IV PORT. I would not do chemo without a port, but many people do.

    good luck either way,

    max
  • chrismc
    chrismc Member Posts: 53
    po18guy said:

    Second opinion!
    Since you have a choice between treating and waiting, this implies that each choice has a risk involved. Since your doctor is quite young, I would think it proper to obtain a second opinion from another, perhaps more experienced, doctor. A second opinion saved my life, and one might well allow you to make a better decision.

    As to Rituxan, it seems that it is a fairly easy ride, unless you are allergic to it. Even then, there are alternatives.

    Rituxan
    po18guy, doesn't every course of treatment have risks, whether you are given a choice or not. I am not at a stage in this disease where my life is in danger. I researched the treaments and decided I would like to try Rituxan because it is less harsh on the body than other drugs.Of course if it doesn't work I will have to go the other route. If I feel a second opinion is needed I will not hesitate to do so. Just wish me luck that the Rituxan will work for me for awhile.


    Chris
  • chrismc
    chrismc Member Posts: 53
    chrismc said:

    Rituxan
    po18guy, doesn't every course of treatment have risks, whether you are given a choice or not. I am not at a stage in this disease where my life is in danger. I researched the treaments and decided I would like to try Rituxan because it is less harsh on the body than other drugs.Of course if it doesn't work I will have to go the other route. If I feel a second opinion is needed I will not hesitate to do so. Just wish me luck that the Rituxan will work for me for awhile.


    Chris

    had my first infusion
    I had my first Rituxan infusion on Friday and everything went well. About an hr after I got home, I got very tired and also had the chills. I went to sleep and woke up 3:30am feeling like I had mild flu symptoms without fever. Went back to sleep, woke up at 9am and all was normal again. That is one down and three more to go. Hope all go as smooth as the first.

    Chris
  • NANCYL1
    NANCYL1 Member Posts: 289
    chrismc said:

    had my first infusion
    I had my first Rituxan infusion on Friday and everything went well. About an hr after I got home, I got very tired and also had the chills. I went to sleep and woke up 3:30am feeling like I had mild flu symptoms without fever. Went back to sleep, woke up at 9am and all was normal again. That is one down and three more to go. Hope all go as smooth as the first.

    Chris

    HAD MY FIRST INFUSION
    Hello Chrismc:

    I was diagnosed with mild B Cell Lymphoma in the Spring. Had a set of 4 infusions of Rituxan in May, one each week for 4 weeks. Next week I start another set of four on Tuesday. After that another set in 6 months and another set after 6 months. Noticed some jitteriness afterwards for a couple of days, due to the steroids, and some tiredness for a couple of days. Otherwise, not bad.

    I noticed that after a few months, around September of this year, I felt that I had more energy.

    Let us know how things go.

    Nancy
  • NANCYL1
    NANCYL1 Member Posts: 289
    chrismc said:

    had my first infusion
    I had my first Rituxan infusion on Friday and everything went well. About an hr after I got home, I got very tired and also had the chills. I went to sleep and woke up 3:30am feeling like I had mild flu symptoms without fever. Went back to sleep, woke up at 9am and all was normal again. That is one down and three more to go. Hope all go as smooth as the first.

    Chris

    HAD MY FIRST INFUSION
    Hello Chrismc:

    I was diagnosed with mild B Cell Lymphoma in the Spring. Had a set of 4 infusions of Rituxan in May, one each week for 4 weeks. Next week I start another set of four on Tuesday. After that another set in 6 months and another set after 6 months. Noticed some jitteriness afterwards for a couple of days, due to the steroids, and some tiredness for a couple of days. Otherwise, not bad.

    I noticed that after a few months, around September of this year, I felt that I had more energy.

    Let us know how things go.

    Nancy
  • NANCYL1
    NANCYL1 Member Posts: 289
    chrismc said:

    had my first infusion
    I had my first Rituxan infusion on Friday and everything went well. About an hr after I got home, I got very tired and also had the chills. I went to sleep and woke up 3:30am feeling like I had mild flu symptoms without fever. Went back to sleep, woke up at 9am and all was normal again. That is one down and three more to go. Hope all go as smooth as the first.

    Chris

    HAD MY FIRST INFUSION
    Hello Chrismc:

    I was diagnosed with mild B Cell Lymphoma in the Spring. Had a set of 4 infusions of Rituxan in May, one each week for 4 weeks. Next week I start another set of four on Tuesday. After that another set in 6 months and another set after 6 months. Noticed some jitteriness afterwards for a couple of days, due to the steroids, and some tiredness for a couple of days. Otherwise, not bad.

    I noticed that after a few months, around September of this year, I felt that I had more energy.

    Let us know how things go.

    Nancy
  • chrismc
    chrismc Member Posts: 53
    NANCYL1 said:

    HAD MY FIRST INFUSION
    Hello Chrismc:

    I was diagnosed with mild B Cell Lymphoma in the Spring. Had a set of 4 infusions of Rituxan in May, one each week for 4 weeks. Next week I start another set of four on Tuesday. After that another set in 6 months and another set after 6 months. Noticed some jitteriness afterwards for a couple of days, due to the steroids, and some tiredness for a couple of days. Otherwise, not bad.

    I noticed that after a few months, around September of this year, I felt that I had more energy.

    Let us know how things go.

    Nancy

    2nd Rituxan infusion complete
    I had my second Rituxan infusion today and all is well. This week I don't even have the fatigue or chills like last week. Infusion time was down to 4 hrs, last week it was 5 1/2. Really not bad at all. I just hope it works for me. I am keeping my fingers crossed.

    Chris
  • allmost60
    allmost60 Member Posts: 3,178
    chrismc said:

    2nd Rituxan infusion complete
    I had my second Rituxan infusion today and all is well. This week I don't even have the fatigue or chills like last week. Infusion time was down to 4 hrs, last week it was 5 1/2. Really not bad at all. I just hope it works for me. I am keeping my fingers crossed.

    Chris

    Thats great!
    Hi Chris,
    I'm so happy the Rituxan infusions are going well for you. I still get tired for a few weeks afterwards and also have joint pain, but it's a small price to pay if it's working. I'll find out in March if mine have worked. Take care, and thanks for keeping us posted.
    Much love...Sue (FNHL-2-3A-6/10)
  • vinny59
    vinny59 Member Posts: 1,032
    chrismc said:

    2nd Rituxan infusion complete
    I had my second Rituxan infusion today and all is well. This week I don't even have the fatigue or chills like last week. Infusion time was down to 4 hrs, last week it was 5 1/2. Really not bad at all. I just hope it works for me. I am keeping my fingers crossed.

    Chris

    Hi Chris, before you know
    Hi Chris, before you know it, you will be done! Got my toes crossed to, stay well Vinny
  • NANCYL1
    NANCYL1 Member Posts: 289
    vinny59 said:

    Hi Chris, before you know
    Hi Chris, before you know it, you will be done! Got my toes crossed to, stay well Vinny

    RITUXAN, SECOND INFUSION
    Hello Chris:

    Last Tuesday, Nov. 20, I started my second set of Rituxan infusions, after 6 months. Have felt tired this past week. Also more appetite. My doctor told me that the steroids in my infusion would give me an appetite. Three more Tuesdays and I am finished for the next six months. Had a blood test the week before last and found improvement: Red blood cells normal. White blood cells normal and platlets normal.

    Keep us up-to-date with how you are doing.

    Nancy
  • chrismc
    chrismc Member Posts: 53
    NANCYL1 said:

    RITUXAN, SECOND INFUSION
    Hello Chris:

    Last Tuesday, Nov. 20, I started my second set of Rituxan infusions, after 6 months. Have felt tired this past week. Also more appetite. My doctor told me that the steroids in my infusion would give me an appetite. Three more Tuesdays and I am finished for the next six months. Had a blood test the week before last and found improvement: Red blood cells normal. White blood cells normal and platlets normal.

    Keep us up-to-date with how you are doing.

    Nancy

    # 3 Rituxan tomorrow
    Tomorrow will be my 3rd Rituxan treatment. So far the only side effect is fatique about an hr after the infusion is done. I usually go to bed as soon as I get home and the next day Ifeel fine by the afternoon. I have not had any blood tests since starting the treatment, but all must be ok because I still have all my energy. I go to exercise classes during the week and have no problems. I just hope the Rituxan works.
  • jimwins
    jimwins Member Posts: 2,107
    chrismc said:

    # 3 Rituxan tomorrow
    Tomorrow will be my 3rd Rituxan treatment. So far the only side effect is fatique about an hr after the infusion is done. I usually go to bed as soon as I get home and the next day Ifeel fine by the afternoon. I have not had any blood tests since starting the treatment, but all must be ok because I still have all my energy. I go to exercise classes during the week and have no problems. I just hope the Rituxan works.

    Hi Chris
    Good luck today, Chris. Sounds like you're doing very well with
    treatment and I'm glad!

    Hugs,

    Jim
  • allmost60
    allmost60 Member Posts: 3,178
    jimwins said:

    Hi Chris
    Good luck today, Chris. Sounds like you're doing very well with
    treatment and I'm glad!

    Hugs,

    Jim

    Sounds good...
    Hi Chris,
    Good luck today with your 3rd infusion. Sounds like you are doing very well with the Rituxan infusions. All in all I feel like my 2 years of R maint has gone fairly good and actually have very little to complain about. Fatigue and achey joints still linger, but it's totally doable. My blood work has been good throughout treatment and I haven't had to get any shots to help boost counts...(knock on wood). I'm really looking forward to ending my maint in February...can't come soon enough, and I'm very anxious to get my CT scan done the first of March, and finally hear the word "Remission"! Hope all goes well today for you. Much love....Sue (FNHL-2-3a-6/10)
  • chrismc
    chrismc Member Posts: 53
    allmost60 said:

    Sounds good...
    Hi Chris,
    Good luck today with your 3rd infusion. Sounds like you are doing very well with the Rituxan infusions. All in all I feel like my 2 years of R maint has gone fairly good and actually have very little to complain about. Fatigue and achey joints still linger, but it's totally doable. My blood work has been good throughout treatment and I haven't had to get any shots to help boost counts...(knock on wood). I'm really looking forward to ending my maint in February...can't come soon enough, and I'm very anxious to get my CT scan done the first of March, and finally hear the word "Remission"! Hope all goes well today for you. Much love....Sue (FNHL-2-3a-6/10)

    Rapid Infusion
    My rituxan infusion on Friday was much quicker. I was put on rapid infusion because of having no side effects. The infusion of the rituxan only took 90 min. Total time in the infusion room accounting for the admin. of the benadryl and the needle stick etc was just under 3 hrs. I acutally did not even feel tired after this infusion like the other two which lasted much longer. One more to go and keeping my fingers crossed for a good result.
  • jimwins
    jimwins Member Posts: 2,107
    chrismc said:

    Rapid Infusion
    My rituxan infusion on Friday was much quicker. I was put on rapid infusion because of having no side effects. The infusion of the rituxan only took 90 min. Total time in the infusion room accounting for the admin. of the benadryl and the needle stick etc was just under 3 hrs. I acutally did not even feel tired after this infusion like the other two which lasted much longer. One more to go and keeping my fingers crossed for a good result.

    Yipee!
    That's great news!

    You go, Chris!

    Hugs,

    Jim
  • chrismc said:

    Rapid Infusion
    My rituxan infusion on Friday was much quicker. I was put on rapid infusion because of having no side effects. The infusion of the rituxan only took 90 min. Total time in the infusion room accounting for the admin. of the benadryl and the needle stick etc was just under 3 hrs. I acutally did not even feel tired after this infusion like the other two which lasted much longer. One more to go and keeping my fingers crossed for a good result.

    Wow!
    You are doing great. Quickest one I have had is just over 3 hours with about 4 being average. First one took 7 1/2 hours. But of course its based on your size and I get 800 MG per dose. I am happy you are doing so well!