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Port - Post Surgery Pain

TeddyandBears_Mom's picture
TeddyandBears_Mom
Posts: 1534
Joined: Jun 2015

Hi All,

Got my port in yesterday. I wasn't expecting pain afterwards. Silly me!

I'm using ice packs as suggested and taking Advil.

My pain is in strange places... like behind my shoulder blade and behind my bicep muscle.  In addition to the actual port site.

Did any of you experience this?  Also, I get my first chemo this Thursday. Wondering if the pain will be gone by then? Right now, I think I would slap anyone touching me. :-)

Appreciate all feedback.

Cindi

Editgrl's picture
Editgrl
Posts: 903
Joined: Jun 2015

Got mine yesterday as well.  Yes, there is some pain, but is manageable with ibuprofen.  Doctor told me if the pain was so severe that it couldn't be controlled with ibuprofen to call them.  I took ibuprofen primarily to sleep.  It does feel like someone is trying to pull an arrow out of my chest, but I am able to use my hand and arm.  Being careful about using those chest muscles, though.

Sorry you are having such extensive pain, Cindi.  Have you ttried ibuprofen?

 

TeddyandBears_Mom's picture
TeddyandBears_Mom
Posts: 1534
Joined: Jun 2015

Thanks for the response.  I haven't tried Ibuprofen but the Advil does take the edge off.  My pain isn't severe but I sure could do without it.

I think I was expecting less so wasn't prepared. Even though  my doctor did tell me I would have pain.  I'm usually pretty tough so I have a feeling it was just too close to my last procedure and I'm worn out. I can move my arm around more this afternoon so I think things will get better.

Glad you are doing so well. You sure can use it considering what you just had to deal with!  :-)  I never thought I would be happy to be a normal weight!!!! I have a feeling trying to put on weight is as tough as trying to get it off.  But, I know you will get yourself ready for the next part of our battle.

Rjchirp
Posts: 3
Joined: Apr 2015

I've had my port in for 9 weeks and still have port pain.  It makes using my right arm almost impossible.  When the chemo is done, the port is coming out.

AWK
Posts: 364
Joined: Mar 2013

I had pain exactly as you all described.  It got much much better in about three days. I took Aleve for it. Some of my friends had a harder time of it, my understanding is it sort of depends on the surgeon and how Much pressure they use to put it in place.  I still get twinges every now and then but I got used to it really quickly.  Make sure to mention it to your nurses in the infusion room to see if they have other suggestions.  

I had my first chemo four days after it was put in, the nurse did a great job and although it seemed counterintuitive it didn't affect the healing at all.

hang tough ladies - you can do this and you will be amazed at how your body heals and does it all over again.  Sending hugs - Anne

TeddyandBears_Mom's picture
TeddyandBears_Mom
Posts: 1534
Joined: Jun 2015

Thanks for the feedback.

Anne, chemo on Thursday for me. That will be 3 days post the port implant. Do they put pressure on the port to administer the chemo? I'm trying to decide if I can do this or if I should delay. I know my doctor wants me to start asap so I don't want to chicken out.  I feel like I'm being a big baby here.  If it is a matter of sticking the needle in without pushing on the port, I think I can hang in there and do it. But right now, the slightest pressure hurts like crazy. 

AWK
Posts: 364
Joined: Mar 2013

I am thinking if your doctor wants you to go that quickly it is probably worth it.  I remember just a little pain when they put the Iv in place; the nurses sprayed mine with a numbing agent (still do), have you take a deep breath then exhale.  I don't remember that the pain lasted more than a minute.  Trust the nurses; they are so good at this stuff.  

That first chemo is stressful.  I was trying to contain my emotions that day walking in the door.  The nurses and other patients gave me strength.  Everything feels wierd, just keep talking to the nurses.  My experience is they are the best guides during the treatments, the doctors don't see what happens as much as they do.  i ended up sleeping through much of my treatment thanks to the anti nausea / allergy meds - usually benedryl.  I still sleep even in this new regime I am going through. 

you can do this!  Stay hydrated And like Cathy said - plan on many bathroom trips as they will load you up with liquids via the infusion!  Hugs!  

Abbycat2's picture
Abbycat2
Posts: 644
Joined: Feb 2014

I had my port surgery the day before Thanksgiving almost 2 years ago and did that hurt! It felt as though someone had his fist inside the wound and was trying to yank my muscles out of my chest. Fortunately, it went away after a few days. I hate having a port but don't dare think about having it removed any time soon. My cancer is likely to recur- so I don't see the point of having it removed and then later replaced. Chris and Cindi, my first chemo infusion was memorable in that I didn't anticipate the effect of all that fluid going into my body. I barely made it to the bathroom!! Otherwise, it was not a bad experience. I developed symptoms of nausea and fatigue about 3 days after chemo. This was true throughout the 6 chemo treatments. I was fortunate in that I had minimal fatigue and nausea. The worse side effect was severe hip/back pain that forced me to have 2 epidural shots. Others here have talked about chemo-induced joint pain. I am hoping this does not happen to you two!

Wishing you both the very best!

Cathy

 

Editgrl's picture
Editgrl
Posts: 903
Joined: Jun 2015

I have read several posts that mention the joint pain.  I have also read that Claritin helps with that.  I also found an old thread from RoseyR detailing the supplements she took to minimize some of the side effects from chemo.  It seems like she was one of the lucky ones that sailed through with very few effects so I've been very interested in the info she posted.

It never occured to me that I would be making bathroom runs (literally.)  Guess I need to be prepared for that.  Thanks for the heads up, Cathy.

pam0422's picture
pam0422
Posts: 25
Joined: Aug 2015

You can ask for a presciption of EMLA cream to be called in before your first treatment. It is a combination of lidocaine&prilocaine that you put on the site approx 90 mins before your treatment starts and it numbs it up. You are supposed to cover and seal it, a sq of clingwrap works and is a lot cheaper than medical seal bandages. It's pretty commonly prescribed for port access, we use it in pediatric patients who have frequent blood draws.

Lou Ann M's picture
Lou Ann M
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Joined: Feb 2015

I am so glad sone clued you in on the bathroom breaks.  You will also need to leave a little earliier  then usually.  It takes a little longer to get there when you have to unplug and pull your delightful cocktail mix along.

I didn't have much discomfort with my ports.  With the second one I had chemo just a few days after it was put in.  A little achy but not bad.   Hugs and prayers Lou Ann

chemo nurses are the best

Sandy3185's picture
Sandy3185
Posts: 228
Joined: Oct 2013

My port went in about a week before I began chemo. I had very little pain or discomfort after the port went in. I was afraid the chemo would make the port area hurt but, aside from the normal discomfort when accessing the port, there was no pain. I do thank God that I did get the port though. Chemo and all those blood tests would have been really difficult without it. 

Cindi, maybe you are getting some gas pains in your shoulder? I wouldn't worry too much about pain from your port during chemo. I remember being surprised at how well I felt after my first treatment! ( that changed 2-3 days later!). I do have restless leg syndrome (one of those conditions that sound like something that's all in your head until you get it!) and the Benedryl they gave me at my first treatment caused it to act up for about the first 1/2 hour of treatment but it eased off after that and they did not give it to me in subsequent sessions. I often dozed through much of the session. I too remember having to make several quick trips to the bathroom! 

Be sure to prepare for side effects that usually start a couple of days after treatment. It is VERY easy to get dehydrated! Drink plenty of water and don't be afraid to take frequent naps, you will probably feel a lot of fatigue as the chemo causes your blood count to drop. I thought I was drinking enuf liquids but I ended up in the emergency room twice after fainting due to dehydration. So take care of yourself and be sure to let your Dr know any side effects you are experiencing. I began experiencing peripheral neuropathy after my first treatment and it just kept getting worse after each treatment. My dr had to change one of the meds, Taxol, after my third treatment.

So, drink plenty of liquids, try to eat and get a little exercise every day. Just remember that your body has been through a lot and you do need time, and rest, to recover.  Sandy

TeddyandBears_Mom's picture
TeddyandBears_Mom
Posts: 1534
Joined: Jun 2015

Really appreciate all of the feedback and tips on the chemo day. I'm looking forward to getting through that first one. Feeling a bit overwhelmed this morning and I know it is part of the process.  Tomorrow post chemo can't come soon enough.  Thanks again. Cindi

ConnieSW's picture
ConnieSW
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Joined: Jun 2012

As you have read, it truly isn't bad.  You will probably feel good afterwards because of the steroids.  I ended up going to the furniture store afterwards so my daughter could help me choose upholstry fabric and order a new couch.  We actually did some more stuff after that.  a couple days later it was a different story but never was as bad as I expected.  It's interesting how different our experiences with the port were.  I was lucky.  The only time it really hurt was when I awoke in rr and morphine took care of that.  Afterwards I was just sore and had the tugging sensation from the weight of my breast.  

Editgrl's picture
Editgrl
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Joined: Jun 2015

I hope everything goes well for you, and here's hoping your pain has subsided.  I'm right behind you with my first chemo next Wednesday.

Hugs,

Chris

pinky104
Posts: 574
Joined: Feb 2013

I really didn't have much pain from the port insertion.  What bothered me was having a seat belt go over it.  I got a lamb's wool cover for the seat belt but still felt the pain.  I was wondering if lying still on a hard table during the port insertion might have contributed to your pain.

My sister, a nurse, recommended I get the numbing cream for chemo.  I did that but then found I really didn't need it.  The nurses told me how to take a deep breath and they poked the needle in at a point during my breathing when it would hurt the least.  I thought the pain was much less than getting blood drawn, and only lasted a second or two.

I don't know if you know that you'll probably be asked to have frequent blood tests after chemo. I had to go in once a week for mine. I had blood taken out of my arms, but some people get it taken through their ports.  I still get pains in my "good" vein in my right arm from that, five years later.  It was a good thing that they tested me weekly, though, as I developed chemo-induced anemia and needed a blood transfusion halfway through my 6 rounds of chemo.  I had become very short of breath whenever I walked, and I was very pasty-looking. 

I don't know if your doctor prescribed it or not, but my doctor ordered Emend for me to use before and during each round of chemo.  I was never nauseous and never vomited because that drug did the trick.  I had to pick it up at a local pharmacy.  One time they ran out of it and I had to go across town to get it at another branch.  I panicked a bit over that as I was picking it up at the last moment.

Hope your pain goes away soon.  Good luck to you.   

DrienneB's picture
DrienneB
Posts: 186
Joined: Aug 2013

Hi Cindi,

I hope you are feeling somewhat better by now, and that you get a good night's sleep before your first treatment tomorrow.

I had my port installed the morning of the day before my chemo began. I did not like the pain that night, but it was not an issue the next day.

Hoping all goes smoothly tomorrow.

-j

flyerette65
Posts: 65
Joined: Oct 2014

I too had port pain and my port was very prominent and not barely noticeable, like most I have seen.  It looked like I had a very large cyst on my chest. When I complained about the port pain to my cancer support group everyone laughed and said why do you think we didn't comment when you asked us if it was painful, it hurts! You're getting a foreign object placed in your body and it takes time to get used to it. I blamed the pain I was having on the fact that I had two rotator cuff repairs on the right shoulder and that there was probably a lot of scar tissue.  Also someone mentioned the "restless legs" and bone pain.  My oncologist told me the bone pain was caused by the Neulasta injections I was receiving.  The restless legs really bothered me, especially when it felt as if my legs wouldn't support me and I actually fell a few times because both my legs just "gave".   I noticed my potassium levels were low so I tried to drink a combination of coconut water and orange juice to give me more potassium., as well as eating a bananna everyday.  I was finally put on prescription potassium pills and the restless, weak legs were no longer a problem. My first chemo, I was really scared and told the nurse I don't think I can do this but it got less stressful with each treatment.  I, too, slept through most of the treatments because of the Benadryl. And I had bloodwork once a week and had the nurse take it out of my arm, rather than accessing the port.  I had a wonderful chemo nurse, I think of her often, she was always upbeat and had a lot of empathy for her patients.

Abbycat2's picture
Abbycat2
Posts: 644
Joined: Feb 2014

 

I basically slept through most of the near 6 hour infusions.  I tended to get very cold and needed a lot of blankets.  I started bringing a sweatshirt to the appointments and that helped considerably. 

TeddyandBears_Mom's picture
TeddyandBears_Mom
Posts: 1534
Joined: Jun 2015

Hi All,

Thanks for all of the positive feedback. I DID make it through my first session. Abbycat2, I agree... the chemo wasn't bad for me either. I will say I am still very tendor at the port site and it wasn't pleasant when the nurse pushed on it but it was doable. She was very good. I got up this morning at 2 and took Advil, put a pillow under my shoulder and side and was finally able to get some sleep. Since my treatments are split up in smaller doses, I'm hoping for little to no side effects. Time will tell.  I did sleep during some of it today. That Benadryl works like a charm. :-)

Chris, take a blanket! I needed mine and was glad to have it. Until my hot flash hit at the end and I was fanning. The nurses got concerned and I assurred them that this is normal.  lol

Can't tell you how much you all mean to me. Thanks for being there.

Cindi

AWK
Posts: 364
Joined: Mar 2013

So glad you checked back in, I was going to post earlier to let you know I was thinking of you but was crashed from my treatment yesterday.  You did great!  Keep hydrating and give gentle with yourself.  Chris - I am thinking of you too - almost there.  You are both strong and Chemosabes!

Hugs, Anne

ConnieSW's picture
ConnieSW
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Don't forget to stay on top of the bowel movement situation.  Be proactive.  I figured just taking the colace would be enough.  NOT!

TeddyandBears_Mom's picture
TeddyandBears_Mom
Posts: 1534
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Connie, you are so right! I have been taking Colace and Miralax since Friday morning. So far NOTHING! And probably TMI but I am normally a daily gal!

Question for all: I'm thinking I need to take a stronger laxative. Or, should I give the Miralax one more day?

Also, since I am on weekly chemo treatments, I assume I will have to deal with this every time. So, once the laxative works, can I stop taking it until the next treatment? I can't imagine being on laxatives every day for the next 4.5 months. I'll ask my chemo nurse about this too.

This is day 3 post the chemo on last Thursday. My side effects have been manageable. I have been tired and found myself not sleeping well, but overall the aches and other things are not over the top. My shoulder and arm still hurt some from the port surgery. Good grief. I hope that goes away soon.

Thanks to all for the posts, advice and general support. This thread (like others) has brought up a lot of great topics.

Love to all,

Cindi

TeddyandBears_Mom's picture
TeddyandBears_Mom
Posts: 1534
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I'm going to take that as good news that you were able to get your counts back up enough to get the treatment.

Really wish it didn't hit you so hard but maybe, just maybe this will be THE ONE. You take care of yourself too Anne.

I drink loads of water so I think I will stay hydrated. And, I'm adding to it just in case.

Thinking of you every day!

AWK
Posts: 364
Joined: Mar 2013

They added in a shot to boost hemoglobin production plus the infusion for calcium levels, both I will get every three weeks.  i was already getting Neulasta as part of my second treatment in the cycle and they told me to plan on platelet transfusions probably every three weeks too.  It amazes me how they manage all of this!  I remember when my dad when through it 20 years ago and it was much more difficult to deal with And required hospitalization for a few days.  The doctor said the progress has been through three generations of treating those side effects since then. he noted that even as recently as a few years ago my counts would've had me hospitalized.  Just amazing!  

On another note my hair is coming out pretty steadily now.  So my stylist is going to shave my head this Saturday morning at the salon; three of my close girlfriends are coming and we are bringing in bagels for everyone.  after the shaving I am getting a make up lesson / makeover.  

Lou Ann M's picture
Lou Ann M
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Even though cancer treatment is still miserable it is so much better than it was in the very near past. Hoping and praying for the best for you.  i like your hair plans.  Lou Ann

pinky104
Posts: 574
Joined: Feb 2013

I never had a hot flash when I hit menopause at 51.  I started getting them at night a couple of years before I was diagnosed with stage IVb UPSC at the age of 61.  My PA at my family physcian's office recommended an over-the-counter drug, which did nothing for me.  When my GYN heard about that, he told me it was a quack remedy.   After my surgery and chemo, I no longer had any hot flashes.  I think they were actually caused by my cancer. I'm guessing it was because my hormones were screwed up, as both my ovaries were found to have cancer in them.  I hope your hot flashes go away after treatment like mine did. 

Don't be surprised if you start getting mouth sores soon.  That was one of my early results from chemo.  The oncologist prescribed a mouthwash which made them go away quickly.  Later on,  about halfway through chemo, my blood count dropped and I got very short of breath when walking or climbing stairs.  My skin looked pasty.  I needed a blood transfusion.  The last thing I got from chemo was peripheral neuropathy.  I couldn't feel my feet, and I actually fell one time because I couldn't feel the drop-off from the driveway to the lawn at a friend's house.    After a year or so, I got a pins and needles sensation in them, and then I started getting very brief stabbing pains, but only when I went to bed. I'm still not right five years later, but I'm much better than I was at first.

I used to feel like I'd had a couple of drinks and was "high" when the nurses prepared me for chemo with the initial drugs they put in the IV. It was almost a let-down when that feeling started wearing off.  I didn't like having to sit there for about five and a half hours, and felt like I was being released from prison when I got out of there, although my nurses were almost all wonderful to me.  I had my chemo in the summer and early fall, and it did feel good to get back out of the air-conditioning of the hospital into the hot air outside. 

   

TeddyandBears_Mom's picture
TeddyandBears_Mom
Posts: 1534
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My surgeon said he didn't believe in the over the counter stuff either. I had tried a couple of things and they didn't work. I have had hot flashes for 10 years. Enough already!

It would be great to be rid of them. So, something for me to hope for at the end of all of this.

Since I'm doing weekly transfusions, it only takes about 3 hours. Today went fast to me. Partly because I slept some. I had not slept much in the last two nights due to the port issues so the Benedryl hit me hard.

Thanks for all of the warning signs. I did buy Miralax and plan to start taking it tomorrow. Since I am only out of my hysterectomy 4 weeks, constipation scares me to death. Can't imagine having that kind of pressure while I'm still healing.  yikes!

Love it that you are able to say 'five years later'......  :-)

Editgrl's picture
Editgrl
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Joined: Jun 2015

it went well.  Regarding the blankets...  yeah, it is frggin' cold in these hospital rooms, but myinfusion center has warm blankets for us.  Yes! As many as we want!  Yes, please!

Chemo orientation didn't tell me a lot that I didn't already know from my research and the ladies here, but I have to say that seeing it all laid out at one time was a bit overwhelming.  Just want to be prepared and get this show on the road.  There was a bit of a mixup in scheduling, and now my first chemo is next Friday.  They hadn't allowed enough time in my Wednesday appointment.

BTW, I did ask my doctor about the weekly schedule vs. every 3 weeks.  She did consider doing the taxol weekly, but said that in her experience the taxol weekly affects the blood count more than the every 3 weeks schedule.  She did leave it up to me to decide, but since it was apparent that she did give it some thought knowing my physique, history, etc., I decided to go with her recommendation, at least to start with.  Time will tell...

Keep us posted, Cindi.  Much love.

TeddyandBears_Mom's picture
TeddyandBears_Mom
Posts: 1534
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Glad they have warm blankets for you! My place is kind of a bare bones location. No TV. A little basket of crackers. They do use recliners that are comfortable so that is OK. I brought my lunch and was fine for the time I was there. One thing I noticed, I was really hungry when I got home. That is the first time since my surgery that I felt that way. My guess is that was a result of the steroids.

I will certainly post any side effects that I experience. It has been 7 hours post chemo and I didn't feel that push of energy that the nurse thought I might get. Darn it. And, I slept for 3 hours this afternoon. I think not sleeping much for the previous 2 nights may have something to do with it.

Chris, you will be fine doing this. It does feel strange walking in there for that first time. My blood pressure was up even with the LORazapam. And, I had a bit of a blue day yesterday morning. But snapped out of it by the afternoon. This crap does play with our emotions.

More to come my Chemosaby partner. :-)

Sandy3185's picture
Sandy3185
Posts: 228
Joined: Oct 2013

my port stick out like a big overgrown mole! I thought that was just the way they were. I was the one who mentioned restless leg and I need to take medication 2X a day to keep it at bay. I have had that feeling that my knees and legs are giving way as well as pain in my knees, ankles and legs. Thank goodness for Mirapex!  Its amazing the things find out by sharing here. I was taking a potassium supplement for a while. I am going to try it again and see if it helps. Thanks, Sandy

TeddyandBears_Mom's picture
TeddyandBears_Mom
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Last night was uneventful.  Glad for that.

I woke up at 4AM thanks to one of my little guys walking on my stomach. Didn't go back to sleep but stayed in bed until 6:30.

I got up to what looks like a sunburn on my cheeks. Doesn't hurt.

I had a slight headache that resolved after my coffee.

My shoulder and port are still sore but so much better. I can use my arm and lift it over my head now.

Had some mild anxiety that hit around 9:30. Not sure why. But I took a Lorazapam and feel much better. (Note: I don't use them often. Still on my first 10 day supply that I got back in June. :-) )

I had about 2 hours of energy that I took full advantage of. Washed some clothes, cleaned up the kitchen. It is amazing how much the little things make me feel more normal!  My surgeon still won't let me vaccum. Major celebration ahead when that happens. 2 more weeks!!!!

Something I wanted to share that my chemo nurse told me: She said if I share a bathroom to make sure I flush the toilet twice and wipe the seat with Clorox wipes for 2 days post my treatment. This protects others from chemo exposure. I thought that was interesting.

More to come.

ConnieSW's picture
ConnieSW
Posts: 1442
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I had that with my first chemo but never again.  Nobody had mentioned it but google educated me, thank goodness, or I might have been calling the doc.

Lou Ann M's picture
Lou Ann M
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Decadrone will cause red cheeks sometimes.  Sometimes I get them and sometimes I don't.  keep track of when and what goes on.  It will probably be close to the same for each time.  I kept a journal and found it to be very helpful.  The first one is the hardest on your emotions and you made it .  Hugs and prayers.  Lou Ann

TeddyandBears_Mom's picture
TeddyandBears_Mom
Posts: 1534
Joined: Jun 2015

Thanks Connie and Lou Ann,

I had not seen anyone else mention the red cheeks on any of the discussions. Glad it is normal. I didn't panic, figured it was some kind of normal reaction.

I got really tired around noon today and have not felt like doing much.

Also, I'm having to push myself to eat. I'm not nauseas, just not hungry at all.

My upper back and shoulders were aching earlier. I took Ibuprofen, fell asleep and feel much better now.

I'm going to push myself to take a short walk with my boys when it cools down. It is important for all of us.

So far, so good though. Nothing has happened that isn't manageable.

AWK
Posts: 364
Joined: Mar 2013

I didn't have the red cheeks.  The tiredness and lack of appetite are normal for me.  I have been making myself get up at six and have coffee with my husband; today I fell asleep from 8 to 11.  I try to graze for my appetite and had a smoothie today.  Just got in from playing with my dogs - good exercise for all of us - trying to enjoy a break in our heat.  

For me the energy level just dives, ok and ten minutes later it drops.  But it is all temporary.  You are doing so well!  

hugs and prayers - Anne

Lou Ann M's picture
Lou Ann M
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Leg cramps and lightheadedness are signs of dehydration.  So drink as much as possible.  Sometimes that is not even enough and your cancer center can give you fluids.  I was stubborn and didn't want to admit I needed it but when I,finally went in it sure did help.

It sounds like you are doing good.  Remember with this it does go away and things get better.  I am saying that to my self too, right now. Fatigue has set it and nausea is so to follow for me.  Hugs and prayers, Lou Ann

TeddyandBears_Mom's picture
TeddyandBears_Mom
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They gave me a prescription for nausea. And the nurse said to take it at the first sign. So far I haven't had any but she said they gave me nausea medicine in the IV that should last for 3 days. So that might be why. I drink a lot of fluids. Probably more than I need to. But, I drank a lot of water before all of this so figured I would add onto that just in case.

I'll be glad when I am healed from my hysterectomy. I still have sharp pains in my stomach and V at times. Nothing unexpected, just annoying. And, of course my port that started this thread. I really hate sleeping on my back. I'm hoping it will be well in the next few days and I can "roll over"! That is my whine for the day. :-)

Overall, I think I am doing really well. And, the information and support from everyone here is such a large part of that wellness. Knowledge is power. It is so nice to know that any question will be answered by people that have been there done that. Who could ask for more?

Always Grateful!  Cindi

Lou Ann M's picture
Lou Ann M
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I have several kinds of nausea meds.  I never needed them when I was on Taxol/carbo, but now that I am on Doxil there gets to a point were nothing wants to work.  Me , myself and I have decided that the chemo is trying to get out of my body through my digestive system and I need to throw-up.  After I do I usually start to feel much better.  Your attitude is great you will handle his.  Hugs and prayers Lou Ann"

ConnieSW's picture
ConnieSW
Posts: 1442
Joined: Jun 2012

I never had nausea but lack of appetite was an issue- a first for me.  I lost 4-5 pounds with each of the 6 sessions.  I found some things that appealed and were easily prepared:  yogurt, smoothies, cottage cheese, eggs, vegetable and fruit juices, toast, oatmeal.  It sounds a bit boring but it was reasonably nutrious.

TeddyandBears_Mom's picture
TeddyandBears_Mom
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Thanks for the suggestions. I ate a baked potato, black-eyed peas and green beans last night. It actually tasted good. It was nice to feel like eating. Earlier in the day I had watermelon (I think Anne - AWK suggested it) that also was easy to eat. I have eaten Cheerios for breakfast forever. Still doing that. Just come in and do it whether I want to or not. Seems like during the day is the hardest time to want to eat. So, I'm eating a little at a time. Mostly fruit. But a little protein too. I think I will boil some eggs and give that a try too.

pinky104
Posts: 574
Joined: Feb 2013

Ironically, after writing to you on here about my hot flashes starting many years after menopause, I was reading an e-mailed bulletin from AARP today on health problems people encounter with aging.  One of the subjects they hit on was night sweats and hot flashes.  They said these things could be caused by hormonal problems, neurological problems and even cancer.  They said that a Mediterranean diet and a diet high in fruits can help significantly.   So it looks like my suspicions about my hot flashes being caused by cancer were right.  Yours may not be from cancer if you've had them for 10 years, but maybe they'll improve once you get past your treatments.

Maggie_mac
Posts: 32
Joined: Mar 2012

This thread seems to have introduced a number of issues and I'd like to comment on a few.  When talking about pain control medicine I see reference to Advil and ibuprofen.  Ibuprofen is the generic name for Advil and Motrin.  If one of these works for you it is likely they will all work.  There can be differences in inactive ingredients that could make a difference for some folks but the active ingredient is ibuprofen in all three. 

I got my port in March 2012 after chemo #7 or #8.  Today I had chemo # 34.  I don't remember having any significant or unexpected pain from having the port inserted, but I have experienced different use discomfort over the past 3 years.  While prepping the skin for the needle, the skin is washed with an alcohol-like solution.  One of my chemo nurses then gently washes the area with another solution so the stinging alcohol isn't pushed under the skin. I hardly feel any prick.  My other nurse doesn't use solution #2 and the sting is really noticable.  Another hint for those of you anticipating getting a port.  The doctor may usually insert it on one side or the other based on habit, and will pick his usual side unless you request otherwise.  Many years ago I hurt my right shoulder skiing and haven't been able to sleep on that side for decades.  Since my right side was already shot I asked that it be put there to try to preserve my left side.  If you have a preference, ask; if you don't, think about it.  It could effect your tennis game, or seatbelt comfort.

I wish you all peace and comfort.

 

Maggie      

molimoli
Posts: 514
Joined: Aug 2014

Today I am hugging tight,tight,tight with plenty healing vibes coming your way.Hope you can sense it.Thanks for all the kind wishes coming my way , need and embracing it.

To all of you currently doing chemo and would like to take a walk even though fatigued ,please calculate and plan your distance bearing in mind that you also have to walk back home.

Too often I had found that patients  overwalked  the going and cannot muster up the energy to return without depleting every bit of needed energy,You will need reserve  energy to even feel like chewing air. so enjoy your walks  but conserve,  Nuff love , minimal discomfort with great results from your treatment is my morning wish for you. Moli

 

TeddyandBears_Mom's picture
TeddyandBears_Mom
Posts: 1534
Joined: Jun 2015

Right back at you.

I did make that mistake of going a bit too far one time. Kind of sneeks up on you.

ConnieSW's picture
ConnieSW
Posts: 1442
Joined: Jun 2012

The first time after treatment when I felt good enough to take off on my own and ended up being gone for an hour and a half.  My neighbor flagged me down as I returned and told me that she had been trying to figure out why my husband had walked to the end of our street a couple times and just stood there looking both ways.  Poor man.  I never thought of worrying him but how very happy I was to be able to take a long walk again.  he knew it wouldn't do any good to come looking for me because I hate set routes and wonder all over  our town.  being me again was wonderful.

TeddyandBears_Mom's picture
TeddyandBears_Mom
Posts: 1534
Joined: Jun 2015

Connie, you are so right! I have been taking Colace and Miralax since Friday morning. So far NOTHING! And probably TMI but I am normally a daily gal!

Question for all: I'm thinking I need to take a stronger laxative. Or, should I give the Miralax one more day?

Also, since I am on weekly chemo treatments, I assume I will have to deal with this every time. So, once the laxative works, can I stop taking it until the next treatment? I can't imagine being on laxatives every day for the next 4.5 months. I'll ask my chemo nurse about this too.

This is day 3 post the chemo on last Thursday. My side effects have been manageable. I have been tired and found myself not sleeping well, but overall the aches and other things are not over the top. My shoulder and arm still hurt some from the port surgery. Good grief. I hope that goes away soon.

Thanks to all for the posts, advice and general support. This thread (like others) has brought up a lot of great topics.

Love to all,

Cindi

Abbycat2's picture
Abbycat2
Posts: 644
Joined: Feb 2014

Constipation was not a problem for me. I think we all response differently to chemo. I am a long distance swimmer, that is at least a mile each time I swim- which may account for the lack of constipation during the months I had chemo. A good approach is lots of physical activity, lots of fluids and lots of fiber. If you are new to chemo as I know Editgirl and Teddy and Bear are, should you develop nausea while eating your favorite food, you are quite likely to develop an aversion to that food! I had to stop making fresh salads for work, which I had previously craved- because even the thought of looking at one of my salads made me gag. It was at least 6 months after chemo ended that I could start making my salads again! It has been almost a year and a half since my chemo ended and I still have trouble eating "Thins"- a thin bread for sandwiches. The sight of this bread still makes me gag!!

I hope this helps,

Cathy

Lou Ann M's picture
Lou Ann M
Posts: 996
Joined: Feb 2015

I have ened up with some constipation after every chemo, but has soon has I have it taken care of, the other extreme sets it.  When I treat that the constipation returns.  So I try to go.easy on treatment for both  oh what a roller coaster. 

I have also noticed that things I used to love , I can hardly stand to look at.  Bread was something I also had trouble with, I couldn't swallow it.  I could eat pizza.  Loved Pita Pit can't stand to drive by now.  Real craving for salty stuff.  Lou Ann

Sandy3185's picture
Sandy3185
Posts: 228
Joined: Oct 2013

I had the same problem Cindi. I did take Miralax through most of the time I was getting chemo and often needed to supplement it with Ducolax. It just became part of my daily routine and I or 2 times a week for the ducolax. Then radiation can bring the opposite problem! Just part of the joys of chemo! But a little exercise and plenty of water also help a lot.  Hope this helps, Sandy

TeddyandBears_Mom's picture
TeddyandBears_Mom
Posts: 1534
Joined: Jun 2015

That does help. I was so concerned about becoming laxative dependant. I guess I just need to address one thing at a time! I'm celebrating... the Miralax finally worked this morning. Oh the things we share here! And thank goodness we do share. Can't imagine trying to figure all of this out alone.

So far today, I almost feel normal. My energy level is up. And, I don't have any aches. I'm hoping that is a sign that I'll have at least 3 good days a week while on these weekly chemo pushes. :-)

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