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One constipation idea...

Birder's picture
Birder
Posts: 29
Joined: Oct 2015

This info is just in case somebody else out there is having a similar problem. I realize I may be only a tiny percentage of patients, but this discovery changed my chemo life completely.

Like everyone I approached chemo determined to do exactly as I was told. I love my Oncologist and totally trust his care. Like most, prior to my first chemo, I was given several scrips for meds to help with nausea side effects. Being a good patient and trying to stay out front of that side effect, I took the meds just as directed. 

From day 2 after each of the first three infusions, I immediately began to be constipated to a degree that seemingly no laxative could fix. The symptoms were confusing. I erred in interpreting them partially as nausea. Hence, I continued the meds. 

I have always been sensitive to antacids but because I so rarely needed to use them I barely kept track. One of my nausea meds was a strong Pepcid type drug  that I took each night at bedtime. I spoke to my doctor and he said its use was entirely up to me.

So I stopped. Low and behold, after my fourth infusion, laxatives were able to handle the Pepcid injection I am given each treatment, then without the nightly pills and with nothing more than prune juice each day I have absolutely no constipation. I feel wonderful and am very fortunate to find I am one who actually has no nausea after R-CHOP.

My situation might be fairly unique, but if my story can help someone else out there  like me, I had to tell my tale.  I would go 5-7 miserable days before managing any bowel movement. That is completely gone and post-chemo is great compared to the first three.

Best wishes everyone and if constipation is a big problem, maybe this approach might be worth a try.

update...6th chemo on Feb 15th then a PET Scan in 30 days to see how I made out!

 

Simon24
Posts: 45
Joined: Oct 2015

Hi Birder,

    I'm glad you solved the constipation problem and shared your solution.  Someone else may benefit from your experience.  My husband finished his R-CHOP in November and never had nausea with R-CHOP, but boy the constipation was a real problem. He needed a prescription for Lactulose which helped somewhat. It was an ongoing problem toward the last few chemo cycles.  Shortly after the chemo was over he was back to normal.  Ironically, when he was due to start radiation the doctors advised that he might experience diarrhea.  He never did, but we were prepared.

My husband won't have his PET scan until April because of the radiation treatments he received, but his blood work has been improving. Not perfect, but improving.  We both wish you the very best with your final treatment and hope your PET scan shows NED.                      Simone

P.S.  We are birders, too.

Birder's picture
Birder
Posts: 29
Joined: Oct 2015

Hi Simone,

Thanks for sharing your thoughts and I send my best, best wishes to your husband!

what state or country do you do your birding?

Birder

Simon24
Posts: 45
Joined: Oct 2015

Hi Birder,

   We bird wherever we are, but some of our favorite places are Edwin Forsythe NWR in New Jersey, Bombay Hook NWR, DE, Huntington Beach State Park, SC, and just about anywhere in Florida.  Those are just a few. We like to look for ducks in coastal areas and my favorite is the Bufflehead.  They remind me of black and white bathtub ducks.  We have feeders in our yard and love watching the daily visitors.  Right now we have lots of snow so the feeders are super crowded.  Watching the feeders is very entertaining.  We look forward to late April when we put out our hummingbird feeder.  Where do you bird?  Thinking of you and wishing you a very good day.                Simone

Anonymous user (not verified)

we occasionally have lage flock of buffleheads stopping at our house in the outer banks during their migrations. Love them. I could watch them for hours.

Anonymous user (not verified)

if you are ever out that way the Huachuca Mtns south of Tucson have great birding. So many hummingbirds!

lindary's picture
lindary
Posts: 699
Joined: Mar 2015

I never have had problems with nausea after R-Chop or Rice. Constipation was another matter. I have IBS so bowel issues are well known to me. One of the best pieces of advice I read somewhere was to start taking a laxitive the night before the first chemo. It had taken about 3 days after chemo for it to kick in the first time. By starting the laxitive before chemo the bowels were working by the day after chemo.

 

Birder's picture
Birder
Posts: 29
Joined: Oct 2015

Hi lindary,

Same with me! I just toss back a dose of Phillips Milk of Magnesia the night before. Then-on, it may not be needed, but I take a big long swig of prune juice each night and all goes great.  The constipation was misery...never again!

Best wishes to you!

Birder

Sal0101's picture
Sal0101
Posts: 133
Joined: Sep 2015

Hi Birder!

Glad to hear you found the trick!  i just finished my 6th chemo and last methotrexate last week.  PET on February 18th. Keeping my hopes up for both of us, along with everyone else fighting the fight.  I can't say I'm not scared though! 

Sharon

 

 

Birder's picture
Birder
Posts: 29
Joined: Oct 2015

Hi Sharon,

We are all in this thing together! Great  to hear your thoughts and I know you are kicking cancer's ***!

Birder

Kaniksu
Posts: 54
Joined: Nov 2015

For me the issue with the constipation was absolately the worst part of the whole chemo treatment..I did exactly as I was told by My Dr and ended up having to go to the emergency room..It was horrible. All I was doing was eating fruits, veggies,and things high in fiber..colace absolutely did not work for me..What really did work was a tea my daughter gave me called Smooth Move..I like you Birder has extreme stomach problems from all the drugs and the more pills I took were just tearing me up...I seem to have made it through this last treatment ok. My Dr told me I was having PTSD from the ER trip...please,new people be proactive on this.. I too find it ironic that they have told me my radiation in the groin area may just have the opposite effect. I go for my PET on the 15 th and if all clear start radiation. I did read a report from a Dr at NIH who said he always gives one more round of chemo after a clean PET. I am going to mention this to my Dr.  Any of you had this conversation with your Drs?  I did not have night sweats as a symptom of the lymphoma but I sure as heck are having them now..How about any of you?..I think the thing that has surprised me a lot about the whole process is my desire to just isolate, I wouldn't call it depression just a lot of soul searching.. I am so grateful that my husband has been so understanding...I don't know about the rest of you but for the past two months my life has just been home ,chemo and Drs..the chemo kicked my butt like I had not expected..I've learned a lot about myself,and others too....I know now for some people friends and acquaintances that for some they are at a loss on how to deal to deal with a sick friend..I knew it was up to me to try to make them feel comfortable being around me..I also learned the most healing place I can be is by the sound of a rushing winter River in the forest with my dog..it brings me an inner peace and letting me know there is a great spirit full of love and there is no need to have fear.....

Simon24
Posts: 45
Joined: Oct 2015

Hi Kaniksu,

   My husband had six rounds of R-CHOP. four methotrexate treatments, and needed 17 rounds of radiation afterwards because he had testicular lymphoma.  He had some severe constipation with chemo, and was warned that he might have diarrhea with radiation.  He had two different types of radiation, beam and proton, during each treatment.  He initially  had a large node near his abdominal aorta, which responded very well to chemo, but because of the initial size concerned the radiologist. She felt he should be treated in the abdominal area as a precaution. He also received proton therapy to the groin area as a precaution.  He sailed through radiation with no side effects until the last two days when he developed some burning in the groin.  It went away after a week.  Through the whole process he used aquaphor ointment two hours after each treatment.  It is very greasy, but it worked well to prevent burns.  He had to be careful to shower it off well before each treatment.  He also used Dove sensitive skin soap.  Others on this site may have other suggestions for ointments and creams you can use to avoid burning from radiation.  I hope you will have a clean PET scan and sail through radiation, too.  Wishing you all the best.                          Simone

 

Our doctor did not mention an extra round of chemo after a clean PET.  My husband had a PET after chemo round four and will not have another until April.  He did not get much of a break between chemo and the start of radiation and they don't like to give PET scans too soon after radiation.  The doctor is carefully monitoring his blood though. 

Max Former Hodgkins Stage 3's picture
Max Former Hodg...
Posts: 3580
Joined: May 2012

Birder,

It is a delight to read that you are near the end of treatments. May it all prove curative, with nothing further ever required.

Simone, I hope your husband gains total remission also. While I never received theraupedic radiation for my prostate cancer, I have learned in studying treatments that the pelvic region is extremely tricky to radiate.  Your radiation staff should be able to recommend effective creams for skin burns/irritation. And there is a testicular cancer board also, although of course testicular cancer is a different entity from lymphoma in the testicles.

max

 

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Simon24
Posts: 45
Joined: Oct 2015

Hi Max,

     Thank you for your good wishes and all the best to you, too.  I have checked out the testicular cancer board and you are right about testicular lymphoma being a different entity.  Here is a journal that a testicular lymphoma survivor kept and I think you will find it interesting. He was also diagnosed with prostate cancer.  He sometimes added an element of humor to his writing and if you look under "E-mails" and find the section "naughty bits" and "tats" you may get a chuckle.  My husband never described his radiation technicians and after reading "naughty bits" I think I know why. Embarassedhttps://nonhodgkinlymphoma.wordpress.com/logs/radiation/          Simone

Max Former Hodgkins Stage 3's picture
Max Former Hodg...
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Joined: May 2012

It is wonderful that you have such a sense of peace. It sounds like you have a very high level of awareness.

By odd chance, as an undergrad student years ago I took some courses in sociology relating to Death and Dying. It reviewed how societies deal with the terminally ill, which overlaps into the seriously ill also.  It is a very common thing for people to not know how to approach a person or family mmember with cancer or other potentially fatal conditions.  I have noticed many times at social events that people I knew would smile and walk past without speaking. But then, they would privately pull my wife aside and ask her about me....they did not know how to speak to me, but were willing to give her a try.  Almost every time I miss church and she goes without me people stop her and ask about me. They never do this when I am present with her.

I was dying in ICU decades ago from an auto crash (I went out of the driver's window, and the car rolled over me). The surgeons had all told my relatives to call anyone who wanted to see me again.

Three women from my office came down together to visit, but I learned later that one, outside ICU, paniced and told the others, "I can't go in and see someone like that."  (I was orange-colored from jaundice, and on a ventillator; my left leg seriously cut up.)  Some people cannot visit a patient in ICU if they know they are seriously mutilated.  She got up the nerve and came in to the unit, and she always marveled that I ever recovered from the state I was in (I heard her tell people that).

A friend died in Hospice from prostate two years ago.  I was with him till the end, but the same thing:  Many friends could not go to see him. It was too much.  Another friend died of breast cancer last month.  We were in close contact; she asked me a lot of questions.  As she got worse and worse, people were less and less willing to write her online or say anything.  She herself wrote to everyone, "I understand if you cannot deal with me, if it is too much for you to handle.  I understand."  Obviously, she was aware people were "backing off."  I told her, "I do not care how bad it gets, how ugly. I am willing to be here , it does not matter.  It will not bother me."

She told me that my comment was precious to her, that it was something she valued tremendously.

Of course we are all hoping to avoid hospice and some of these issues, but they tend to ooccur to any person with serious cancer, even if not considered terminal.  These reactions have occured around me personally many, many times.  One technique that I have found useful is to volunteer information about myself, after asking if they are interested.   I would say 80% of the time they do express interest, and seem to greatly appreciate me breaking the ice.  A few do not want to discuss it, and some people do not want their own situation shared themselves.

So, it varies a lot. I accept anyone regardless of 'where they are at' in learning about cancer.   Be aware also that most people are pretty ignorant of cancer, with tons of misconceptions.  I have heard of educated people who were afraid that it is contageous !   Another common, but usually unspoken thought that uninformed people have when hearing someone has cancer is to think to themmselves, "How long till he is dead ?"  They often assume a cancer diagnosis is a death sentence; they do not know that cancers are all different, some terminal, some not. 

I gradually, a little bit at a time, learned after getting over lymphoma in 2010 that my managers and many of my coworkers had assumed that I was terminal, and would never be back.  This, despite the fact that I had told them my disease was treatable, and that chemo was working.  I even saw administrative evidence proving they thought I was "a goner"....there was a paper trail; security clearances had been cancelled, etc.   Of course, the whole time they were saying, "Get well soon ! We hope to have you back as soon as possible !"

Thank you for your post on this seldom-discussed subject,

max

Rocquie's picture
Rocquie
Posts: 845
Joined: Mar 2013

Kaniksu's post struck me too. I have been thinking off and on this afternoon about starting a thread on the topic, since of course, this one began on the subject of constipation.

You are right, it is a seldom discussed subject, yet one I think is very important. It certainly has been for me. 

Stay tuned. . .

Rocquie

 

 

OO7's picture
OO7
Posts: 282
Joined: Sep 2014

Indeed Kaniksu's post hit a nerve, Rocquie I hope you start a new tread.  it's one thing I was recently thinking about.  The emotional part.  I would love to know how everyone copes because I fear I'm running out of tricks.  I don't have the support but shocked how some people who do know my situation behave.  Some get a gold star while others do not.

Kanisu:

I understand your moments of inner strength and enjoyed your post.  It calmed my dragons for a moment and gave me pause to appreciate my moments of escape.  Alone in a canoe at midnight on a black water lake in the Adirondacks.  With a full moon to guide me and a few loons who swam by my boat, made me appreciate my life, my journey and gave me peace.

blessings 

Max Former Hodgkins Stage 3's picture
Max Former Hodg...
Posts: 3580
Joined: May 2012

Yes, R,

I think that would be a wonderful initiative.  

So many responses to this issue !  It obviously is a common experience.  People on the surface always want to pretend all is happy-happy.  But it is not.  I have noticed that all cancer center advertisements portray people as if it is all so wonderful, everyone is having the time of their life. What a crock.

If you have not seen it, this is a powerful song and video. While it is not directly related to cancer, it is about being different, about wanting to accomplish, to strive and move forward.

max

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1u-niluB8HI

 

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OO7's picture
OO7
Posts: 282
Joined: Sep 2014

Thanks Max, loved it!

I really needed that today.

lindary's picture
lindary
Posts: 699
Joined: Mar 2015

When I was going thorugh my cycles of chemo and having days at home and days at work, I fond many of the people tended to treat me different. Over the years we have had several people at work with cancer, not all of the survived. So some people didn't know how to talk to me. I would bring up it by saying what I had, it was treable and that I was most likely to die of something other than this cancer. I think that for me, by going into work as often as I could, they got used to seeing me on a regular basis. We just go about our work. 

With friends that I don't see that often I do get a feeling that they don't know what to say. I will break the "ice" and get the conversation going. The only bad thing is that they will give a hug as if they don't think they will see me again. 

My family is good but my husband's family. Granted they have had 3 brothers with cancer (throat, lyphoma, small cell lung) and 1 survived (lymphoma). Yet many of them, the first thing they say is "are you going to die". No matter how many times I tell them the details and remind them that what I have is similar to what the brother who survived cancer had, they still think I am hiding something from them. I give up on them.

Anonymous user (not verified)

my neices and nephews are noticeably not around as much since they know I have cancer. When I was at my worst one great neice asked me "Why are you grey? Is it because you are dying?". Now I am tanned and she still is not forthcoming. But just a child. I heard two young (at the time) great nephews talking. One of them said " I hope I get his guns". Its just the way people are. I don't blame them. They are little kids. Its the least of my concerns.

OO7's picture
OO7
Posts: 282
Joined: Sep 2014

Some of you know I hid my cancer because my dad was diagnosis just after me.  My husband, two friends both oncologists (one is mine, other his wife my best friend) one sister in law knew and a my husband cousin because he's the head at Johns Hopkins and there was a thought I would go there but ended up at Dana Farber.  That was it for months.

My twisted tail was difficult at first because of my father.  Life became rather complex, I needed to be better than I was and play the role of a lifetime.  My husband wasn't so great.  My oncologist thinks he just can't bare the idea of anything being wrong with me.  I take some of the blame, my warrior like personality shows no weakness but I did need to talk to someone about this and he couldn't Talk about any of it.

I was losing my father, in treatment, a zombie because of it and still had to put on "The Show". The holidays were tricky, somehow I needed to pull this all out of a hat and entertain, decorate, wrap, play Santa and all his elves too....

I just could handle the complaints anymore, mindless and  trivial things that carried no wait in the world were always the topic of everyone's concerns.  Perhaps I was just sensitive but it drove me close to the point of no return!  By the seventh month a few more people knew.  My two children were old.  My other sister-in-law now knew.  She is wonderful yet never helped with anything.  Again being strong has it's downside.  The upside is people didn't really treat me differently because they had no knowledge of my cancer.  When I was diagnosis an old friend was diagnosised too.  He is rather famous and it was constantly in the news, many blessing were coming his way from all around the world.  I just wanted a few....

With my father, I was amazed at all the love and concerned that embraced him right until the end but what I found frustrating was so many who didn't have cancer were well intenioned morons.  Sorry I had to say it.  I just would wrap my dad in my protective arms and formed a bubble.  Most days it worked.  Everyone just backed off when I was there.  I'll never forget the glances he would give me, like come now I'm about to blow!

The crazy part:

I recieved a call (7 months after diagnosis ), my dear friend had cancer too.  I was floored.  Did everything I could, was her cheerleader, gave care packages, sent her so much love and concern.  Listened, listened and listened.  I told her about me, she was so   Surprisingly more interested in my stage than anything else.  She finished her treatment, scans were clean and I was so darn thrilled for her.  When she learned my great result.  I got nothing.  No happy dance, no wow that's great nothing.  She was in the club, that's what's off to me...

 

What I would love to know is where do you find your peace, strength and happy place?

lindary's picture
lindary
Posts: 699
Joined: Mar 2015

Right now I wish I knew. My first thought in the morning is "what is going to ache today?". Then I have to face the day. Between the high TSH (thyroid) effects, February blahs and wondering when the stem cell transplant is going to be scheduled I could use the Peace Strength & definitely a Happy Place. 

Right now I do find Peace in my car. I don't care where I am going but I am by myself and in charge of where I am going. (Although having to deal with dumb drivers can be a bummer.) As bad as it may sound if I have a Happy Place it is the bathroom. One place where no one will bother me. Strength, forget it. I guess two out of three aint' bad. 

I always have a down time Jan-Feb except last year because I was too busy with the chemo & dr appts. This time I feel like if the house was falling down around me, I would just look at it. I am hoping that the increased thryoid meds kicks in son. I've been on the new dosage for 2 weeks and my primary dr said it takes 3 - 4 weeks to get it under control. UGH!!!

OO7's picture
OO7
Posts: 282
Joined: Sep 2014

because your it!

Linda YOU are STRONG!!!!!  With a capital "S"!!!

Mental strength is equally if not more important than physical strength.  Besides, look out world when that thyroid medicine kicks in which is any day NOW!!!!!

Jan/February, I know I'm the same way.  

If the house falls just make sure the bathroom is intact and it misses your car! 

You're almost there!

Max Former Hodgkins Stage 3's picture
Max Former Hodg...
Posts: 3580
Joined: May 2012

007, Linda,

There was a scene in the old David Carradine Kung Fu series. Cain and another guy were prisioners in a wile west army camp.  It was summer, in the desert. They were put in a tin outhouse-sized structure, to die from heat.  No one had ever come out of it.  The one guy is dying, and sees Cain sitting there, seeming to be ok. He asks Cain how he can seem ok, and Cain says, "You must feel that you are cool."

The guard comes to drag them out of the shed the next day, and is astonished to have them both walk out when the door is opened.

In the bathroom, feel that you are at the Biltmore House.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AH9oY5X0Nlk

Max Former Hodgkins Stage 3's picture
Max Former Hodg...
Posts: 3580
Joined: May 2012

Linda,

A car can be an oasis. That is why stereo systems are such a key aspect of new vehicles.   When in school, I found that I could do my absolute best thinking while...mowing the yard.  Sure it was noisy, but you are "alone"; no one to interrupt.  It was a creative time.

In ICU, I had the crazy thought:  If I get out of here, I am gonna get a Harley, and do an 8,000 trex, from SC to San Diego, to Seattle, to Maine, and then back home.  No plans, no schedule. Just ride and see what is next down the rad. No interstates, just back roads.

That has not totally happened yet, but I do ride.   Still want to learn bass guitar, fly an airplane.  Go rent a tent for a night at the North Pole, fish for sharks in the Philipines.  I love those stories of 98 year old women getting college degrees, that sort of thing.

Be a renegade.

max

Anonymous user (not verified)

is its own reward. Otherwise no one would be virtuous. You did great things with your Dad and friend. Take comfort in that and the fact you rose above the situation. Just a thought .... Could it be your friend is not dealing well and wants to put it all behind herself?

OO7's picture
OO7
Posts: 282
Joined: Sep 2014

How could my clean scans and receiving a result even my doctor didn't think I would receive prevent her/us from moving forward?  I hope I'm not being a blockhead but I don't think so.

Regrettably I think it's all about competition hence the repeated questions about my stage and the incurable aspect to follicular cancer.  Her constant probing was so disturbing I shared her text with my Councelor.  Remember she was one of the few people I was able to share this really great news with.  Her response was, OK.  That was it.  I had to check my phone again, just to be sure.  Seriously, I can't even make that stuff up....  

I don't find cancer sexy and it's not a competition, I just don't get it.

I have always said that it's not the difficulties that we face but rather what we do with it that matters.  I won't let cancer define me, I hope to set an OK example for my children.  I know, I have crashed and burned along the way but for their sake I hope they can see the good in my journey.

Thanks by the way...

Kaniksu
Posts: 54
Joined: Nov 2015

Sounds like you have really been through it , and I am so sorry for that...At the beginning of this journey, I heard the term "strong woman" way too many damn times...why did I have to be strong.?  People have always seen me that way..I have found there are a very select number I share my deepest feelings with..and those care. I think your friend is consumed with her illness.. I know it hurts when we care so greatly and it is not reciprocated..be bigger than that, we will never understand what makes others tick...I have realized my expectations of some were more than they are capable of..Love  yourself,  and appreciate you capacity to be giving and caring, not everyone is there yet. I find my happy place alone in the woods or by a river..it is there I know that I am not dealing with this alone...I'm sending positive loving thoughts your way...

lindary's picture
lindary
Posts: 699
Joined: Mar 2015

I have heard that comment about being storng way too many times. Am I strong because I get out bed in the morning, get dressed, eat breakfast and put in a full day of work. Isn't that what ever one at our office does? Oh no. They say that it is because we do after being diagnosed & treated for cancer. What about people who have had heart attacks, strokes, told they have diabetes, etc.? 

We aren't strong. We are determined.

- to not let our health condition keep us from doing what we want to do.

- to get out life back to what it was even though we know it will never be exactly like it used to be.

But I often wonder about the people that say I am strong, do they know others who had cancer and just curled up in a corner and gave up? Maybe that is why they think I am strong. 

So when I heard "you are strong" I grit my teeth and say thank you. 

 

OO7's picture
OO7
Posts: 282
Joined: Sep 2014

Kaniksu,

Your words are a comfort.  

Life has it struggles.  Through my recent experiences, I have come to learn that Hell is not just Hell.  It has many levels.  Lymphoma did make me strong (hiding it did made me stronger) it also made me determined stedfast and greatful for all that life has to offer.  I'm just a girl who loved her dad.  It's the defining nature of love, it's what we do.  There was no choice.  

Today I'm a girl who loves her mom, it's what I have to do.  She's frail in the wake of losing my father, now her mother too has cancer.  My grandmother.  There is no room for me in that equation.  I will have to figure that out.

Happy Places, there are so many......

When I look up, the sky often dazzles me with its brilliance of color or sometime I love the powerful looming storms.  I get lost in them.  I live up on an escarpment.  I love the land, view, water and sky.   Solitude and nature perhaps are my favorites.   Nature surrounds oneself in mysterious, beautiful ways; making it exciting yet peaceful when in its presence.  A safe place to let your mind rest.

When in the woods, you witness that life is constantly changing and always coming to fruition.  I guess it give me grace.

Other happy places, anywhere with my family and fur family(cat and dog).  Stables...... Wow, I never knew how healing horses were.  My daughter rides and she can't get me out of the stable, I love being there.  In front of my fireplace. Alone with a puzzle, the bath hence my nickname is mermaid and finally Florence where I took my profile picture.  Absolute heaven for me.....

Sending you peace, endurance, happiness your way.

Max Former Hodgkins Stage 3's picture
Max Former Hodg...
Posts: 3580
Joined: May 2012

Horses indeed have a special spirit about them, always love being around them.  Many animals relate well to humans, especially sick humans.  Dogs are famous for this.  Of course most people have no access to them, but elephants are among the most intelligent animals on the planet (near dolphins).  Elephants have highly refined emotions, and go through grieving processes at the death of a friend or relative elephant.  Dolphins are stunning, the way they will pace a ship going to sea for hours; they loved diving over the bow of the sub whenever it was moving on the surface. You could tell it was all a joy and game to them, criss-crossing back and forth. Their stamana is unbelievable, and they would leap easily ten yards out of the water across the bow each time.  I have watched them pace survace vessels also many times, or play under a bridge I was standing on.  There are many stories of dolphins saving sailors from sharks at sea.  The insignia that submariners wear is a pair of dolphins guarding a surface ship

At a pragmatic level, I guess a dear dog at the fireplace in a house is the best most can do, but a loyal and perceptive dog is a blessing.

 

max

OO7's picture
OO7
Posts: 282
Joined: Sep 2014

Indeed.  My trusted loyal friend could not be fooled.  When I came home on treatment days she would lay with me all day long if need be.  I could put on a front with everyone but nothing gets by her.  She knew it was a mask I was wearing.  I'll never forget my cat too, she was so weird on treatment days.  She would lick repeatedly the infusion site.  Over and over again, down right strange.

You may appreciate this.  My dear friend who is an oncologist was at my house one day.  My dog would not leave her alone, she was sniffing an area on her leg.  Dear friend gasped because she was aware of the keen sense dogs have.  Long story short, she removed cancerous cells in the very spot my dog was smelling.

I think last year was a bit difficult for me, I retreated.  Animals and solitude gave me peace and understanding.  Room to breath.  The horse thing is a bit new, I always loved them, riding too.  This is truly spectacular.  I guessed a few knew about me because there are a couple horses at the stable who don't like people who down right love me. I even whispered to them, "you know don't you"?  They're aware of the secret I'm hiding. Nala an intuitive horse and one of my favorites could be free in a pasture, if she saw me she would quickly come over and stay by my side.  She cuddles her large Teranasaouras Rex head around mine, plays with my hair and nibbles on my ears.  The woman who runs the stable is amazed but then again she doesn't know.  Most everyone else Nala bites.  Hard too!

I'm thinking of getting one, seriously.  I may need to change my life.  I travel, I do love Italy so perhaps I'll sell everything and buy a tiny farm and get my daughter a horse  ;-)

I enjoyed your Dolphin story, how lucky you are to have witness that.  Powerful and playful, what a site that must have been.  Thank you for sharing.

 

Max Former Hodgkins Stage 3's picture
Max Former Hodg...
Posts: 3580
Joined: May 2012

 

This is a pretty good example of the dolphins.  This sub is a lot larger than mine was, so the animals cannot cross over the deck completely, but it shows how they will pace the ship in front. I have seen as many as 7 or eight at once, and they will do this for hours, which is what most amazed me.

Keep jumpin !

http://www.videobash.com/video_show/simply-some-dolphins-diving-in-front-of-the-uss-mississippi-submarine-312167

 

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OO7's picture
OO7
Posts: 282
Joined: Sep 2014

that make you happy you're breathing...

Awesome.

Thank You!

lindary's picture
lindary
Posts: 699
Joined: Mar 2015

I did volunteer work with a riding program for about 18 years. Sometimes leading horse, sometimes side-walking and sometime doing what we called ground lessons for the kids (arts & craft). I loved being with the horses. It was amazing to see how kids who could not sit still would be completely different once on the horse. When the kids realized they could "control" this huge beast they changed. I also worked some very special horses. May who was a smaller horse and was over 40 when she died. She was our "go to horse for first time riders. Too Tall a retired thoroughbred who died about 33 and love kids. Even when retired from the program he loved to come into the arena and walk around with everyone. True to his name, he was tall. Anna was the only horse I ever saw that walked around with a frown. She was a very calm old gal that I started walking with becuase I was have knee problems and she didn't walk fast. There were so many others at that barn. I grew up loving horses but working in that program made me realize my first love is dogs because they can live with us. Plus a horse cost so much more to own. With my Chemo schedule last year I had to drop out of volunteering. With the Stem Cell this year it won't be possible for me to even go to the barn. 

I do miss the horses but I have our dog and my granddogs. I often wonder if we are caretakers of the animals in this world or they are here to take care of us. I think they are doing a better job of caretaking.

Jeff148's picture
Jeff148
Posts: 184
Joined: Apr 2014

During chemo, my constipation issue caused the worst of my side affects. My only savior was Miralax. I would take it every day until I was done. But by the time I started using it, the damage was done. I love fishing, but the fisure I had was the most painful thing I've experienced. The only thing that helped was soaking in a warm bath. I would be at work, and then would have to drive home several times a day for my bath. It was awful and lasted well after chemo was done (4 months). All the numbing cream in the wolrd didn't help. The pain was an 8 out of 10 on the rector scale. If I have to go through this again, I will be taking Miralax before I start until after I am done. The subject is gross, but I had to wiegh in. I agree with Birder...be proative on this one.

lindary's picture
lindary
Posts: 699
Joined: Mar 2015

When my oncologist first started talking about chemo and constipation I started talking about my IBS. I pretty much had it under control but the thought of something new that could trigger it scared me. Doing research online I saw a post the said to start taking a stool softner the night before chemo starts. My dr wanted me to use Miralax because she felt Senna (which I prefer) is too strong. So I would take Senna the night before and the next 2 - 3 days. After that I would use Miralax. It got me through it without any serious problems or triggering a IBS attack.

You are right, this is one of those topics that needs to be talked about before chemo starts.

Lucylou123
Posts: 2
Joined: Feb 2016

Thank you Birder for this info. My husband had his first round of RCHOP yesterday. He is doing just fine so far, but I was wondering if he should be taking some fiber or something now. He hasn't taken any of the meds for nausea yet and I hope he is as fortunate as you have been and doesn't need them. 

My husband received a Pepcid injection at the time of his infusion. So am I understanding that in your situation you addressed the constipation from that with an over the counter laxative once you realized the anti nausea meds were causing the majority of your problems? I appreciate any advice you have on this subject and on anything else that we may anticipate with this chemo regimen. He will be having 6 rounds as well.

Congratulations on completing your chemo and I wish you good health. 

yesyes2
Posts: 592
Joined: Jul 2009

HI,  

I don't post very ofter but wanted to mention that the Vincristeen, which is a componant of RCHOP and many other chemo cocktails for Lymphomas, is the primary culpret in chemo induced constipation.  The constipation is caused by the drug slowing down or in some cases shutting down nerve impulses. This is the same drug responsible for the neropathy most/may patients experience.  

My own experience was sever constipation after the first chemo.  I know the Chemo nurse was conserned about an impaction.  I was told to use Miralax during the first week of each cycle.  I also develped a mild case of thrush so my doctor put me on an ant-fungul medication who's side effect was loose stools.  I was on this med for the remaining 5 cycles.  The result of the anti fungul was I stopped taking Miralax and had no constipation problems.

I do wish the doctors would give patients a heads up on this drug.  And hope I was of some help.

Regards,

Leslie

 

lindary's picture
lindary
Posts: 699
Joined: Mar 2015

I was told right away to take somehting for constipation. I learned from  apost online that it was best to start it the day before chemo and continue fo rabout a week. I used Senns for the first 5 days and then switched over to Miralax for the next 3 - 4 days. 

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