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Fatigue AFTER Finishing Chemo

Posts: 66
Joined: Jan 2013

Hi, all,

You may remember my excited posts last month about finishing my four rounds of TC chemo.  I am still thrilled about it.  However, I am also very tired -- much more so than during chemo.  I am trying to tell myself that it's probably residual anemia (I have labs scheduled for next week so I can find out for sure then); exhaustion from returning to work; getting used to a different social schedule (because I actually have a social life now); and perhaps my body rebooting itself as it works the chemo drugs out, finishes off having side effects, begins growing hair, starts eating the foods that were restricted during treatment, and otherwise resumes normal operations.  There is that nagging voice in my head, however, telling me that I already have cancer again and all of this was for naught.  

Folks, I need a sanity check.  Anyone else experience fatigue as they resumed their lives post-chemo?  



Posts: 186
Joined: Mar 2013

Hi Megan,

I felt and feel the fatigue, I'm three months out.  I think It takes a bit to bounce back:) Congrats on completing chemo!


Posts: 66
Joined: Jan 2013

Thanks, Patti.  That makes me feel a little better.  Truly, this whole "getting back into life" thing is overwhelming, so I should not feel too surprised.  It's good to know that I am not crazy.  Now, if only my hair would really start growing back at a fast clip...

Posts: 186
Joined: Mar 2013

My hair is taking its time growing back but it is growing back:) I lost most of my eyebrows and lashes too and they are just about all back!  Patience is not my strong point but its all apart of this journey:)


Ritzy's picture
Posts: 4382
Joined: Aug 2009

Megan, I didn't have chemo, but, I did have a lumpectomy followed by 37 rads.  I was exhausted!  My rads oncologist told me it can take as much as up to a year to gain strength back from rads.  I imagine it could be the same for chemo.  Think about what our poor bodies, let alone our minds, have been thru.  It will take time, but, it should happen.  Just continue to get as much sleep as you can and still try to take it easy.  And, congrats on finishing chemo! 

Sue :)

Posts: 242
Joined: Apr 2010

Congratulation on completing chemo. It takes a long time for everything to return to "normal". I still

get fatigued at stuff I didn't used too. Yes, there are days when I want to do nothing but others when I'm

a ball of fire. Don't worry about it, it is normal. I'm not sure we are ever the same after all this. Hang in there, it

all works out.



Alexis F's picture
Alexis F
Posts: 3602
Joined: May 2009

Good luck with your labs!  I think it is normal too, to be tired after just finishing chemo.  Post your results when you get them.


Hugs, Lex

SIROD's picture
Posts: 2199
Joined: Jun 2010

More than likely you will go back to being your old self again.  I am curious about the food that was restricted during chemo.  I didn't know any food was restricted?  I am going through chemo after 18 years of using hormonal drug therapy.  I did chemo when I was diagnose for 6 months, then it was hormonal drugs now that I've run out of them, I am doing chemo.  Could you tell me what kind of food you were restricted?

The first time around, as soon as I finish chemo I went on Tamoxifen.  I don't remember being tired very long, I was so happy to be done with it, I was probably walking on air.  I had the port-a-cath removed the following month and that was it.

Fatigue is part of chemo, I had fatigue on hormonal drug therapies but nothing like I'm experiencing this time around.  It is overwhelming and I can see this might be my norm forever.

Wishing you the best in your new life.


Posts: 66
Joined: Jan 2013

Hi, Doris,

My med. onco's office holds a chemo class, where they handed out a booklet from ACS on chemo.  I looked at the charts and guidelines in that book on diet and followed them religiously.  They warned against eating certain types of soft cheeses, advised to wash foods in certain ways, said to stay away from buffets, etc.  Basically, for fruits and veggies, if it was not cooked or did not have a hard skin or rind, I avoided it.  Other folks did not do this, and they were fine.  Different strokes for different folks.  For me, staying on my chemo schedule was of utmost importance, and I did not want to develop any illness that would lead to delays.  I have a fabulous work conference to go to in a couple of weeks, and I was not going to miss it for the world.  :-)


VickiSam's picture
Posts: 9085
Joined: Aug 2009

from continuous fatigue --  mild to moderate exercise helped, as well as iron enriched foods ..  walnuts, almonds, raisins, fish .. etc.

Best of luck to you.

Vicki Sam


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