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Chemo begins 12/11 Chemo begins 12/11

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Unread 12-10-2003, 10:33 PM
Chemo begins 12/11

I saw my gyn/onc today to discuss my treatment plan. When I had last seen him about a week after surgery he had told me he wanted to start the first week in December. He also wanted to review the pathology slides himself [the path report had just gotten to him that day] and review the pathology with a cancer committee to get a consensus on the best course of treatment. The way my cancer developed was quite unusual so he wanted to review with others to see if they agreed with his proposed course of treatment. Because of his own vacation and the Thanksgiving holiday, the committee meeting didn't occur until last Thursday. I was concerned about not starting treatment too close to Christmas so they scheduled me to start tomorrow.

The good news is that the committee did agree with his treatment plan and he is still confident that my treatment will be successful. The additional bit of info was that the committee recommended chemo be followed by hormone therapy. The way he explained it is that cancer had developed in my endometriosis tissue and they want to prevent any more endo from recurring and possibly developing cancer cells at some future date.

I'll be doing carboplatin and taxol, 6 cycles. I was given a prescription for steroids tonight to try to cut off any possible allergic reaction to the Taxol. I had not expected that. Anyone else also get steroids?

I'm nervous, but eager to get this going.

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Unread 12-10-2003, 11:05 PM
Chemo begins 12/11

I hope everything goes well for you during your first chemo. I understand your eagerness to get ot over with. I also had 6 cycles, starting last November, i had Taxol, Cisplatin, ( which I think is similar to carboplatin) and Ifex. I wasn't given seroids, only benedryl in case of allergic reaction. Steriods make me very hyper and fortunately i didn;t need them for any of my chemos, but most woman do take them with Taxol and it helps, prevent allergic reactions. Chemo was hard but doable and I excpet for about bad day 24 hours after each treatment, I was able to keep up most of my usual activities, at least the ones I like. It is almost 9 months since chemo and I am almost well enough to clean my house.
Unread 12-11-2003, 08:54 AM
Chemo begins 12/11

Hi Limbo!

I haven't had to have Chemo, but just wanted you to know I'm thinking of you (and all the other sisters that have had to endure this)!!!

I see you're in Seattle also!!! What hospital do you go to, if you don't mind me asking?

Good luck today!
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Unread 12-11-2003, 08:56 AM
Chemo begins 12/11

I had surgery at Northwest and will be getting chemo at Swedish, which is closer to where I live. How about you?

Unread 12-11-2003, 09:14 AM
Chemo begins 12/11

I had all my stuff done at Swedish. It's an AWESOME hospital. Who's your doctor there? <admin snip of physician's names to comply with site guidelines>.

Oh, I'm only about 20 min from Swedish. GREAT hospital all around!
Unread 12-11-2003, 09:23 AM
Chemo begins 12/11

<admin snip of physician's name to comply with site guidelines>. My doc is GREAT!
Unread 12-11-2003, 09:34 AM
Chemo begins 12/11

LUCKY you! That's who I was originally referred to, but he didn't have any open appointments for over a month, and I was antsy and didn't want to wait!
Unread 12-11-2003, 09:58 AM

Steroids are unfortunately a must with Taxol, as there is something in the base that can cause problems. Now here's the good news--your body CAN get used to them. I am now on my second course of carboplatin only for recurrent ovarian cancer. For the whole first course of 8 treatments and for the first two treatments this time no steroids--hooray! Treatment #3 caused a major allergic reaction and before we could finish it out as #4 I had to take steroids. I was anticipating bad problems--none. No jitteriness, sleeplessness, etc. as I'd had before. I think my body adjusted. Now I'll take 8 mg Dexadron tonight and 8 mg in the morning, get a short-acting pushed steroid shortly before carbo tomorrow and should be fine. Look at the steroids as part of the treatment to ensure you don't react to especially the Taxol and can finish it and get any and all lingering cancer cells blasted out of there for good!
Unread 12-11-2003, 06:30 PM
Chemo begins 12/11

Just thought I'd update everyone. The treatments were LONG [9-3:45] but everything went pretty well. The only glitch was some trouble starting the IV. At my blood draw last night the tech had no trouble spotting a vein, and he was even able to jab it, but he got very little blood out of it. He was using a larger needle and kept poking around trying to get the blood to flow. He finally gave up and went to the other arm with a butterfly needle and had no problems.

This morning they got the veins to pop, but as soon as she put in the lidocaine, they disappeared again. She tried 2 different spots on my right hand, then called the IV tech guy. Even he had some trouble, but was able to get it going on the first try with a little futzing. Fortunately they use that lidocaine now so it's not very painful. The taxol caused some discomfort from time to time in my wrist but that went away when they switched to the carbo.

I also saw the results from my blood draw and everything looked pretty good. I was really pleased to see that my CA125 had gone from 150 in September to 28 today. Yay!

I'm keeping my fingers crossed that the side effects aren't too severe.

Finally, I was also really pleased to see they have ports to access the internet in the infusion rooms. Yay! That should help me pass the 5-6 hours treatment takes.

Unread 12-12-2003, 01:24 AM
Chemo begins 12/11

Hi Limbo,

I'm glad to hear your first treatment went okay. Let us all know how you make out!

I had my first treatment about 12 days ago. The part that gave me the most anxiety during treatment was when they put the needle in my arm. Nurses had some difficulty when I was in the hospital for surgery because my veins are so small.

Fortunately the nurse giving the chemo seemed much better trained than the ones in the surgery ward. I told the nurse my veins were small and she spend a long time prepping my arm beforehand. Still during the whole time the drugs were feeding into my IV, cisplatin and epirubicin (similar or same to doxyrubicin), I was petrified that my vein would give out. I wish I could have just trusted everything more and saved myself the worry!

I'm curious to know what anti-nausea meds you are taking. I took steroids 3 1/2 days after. I still felt pretty sick for 2 days and it took another couple days for my stomach to completely settle down. I stopped steroids as soon as I could because I felt that they were putting me into a weird mental state.

Wishing you minimal side-effects!


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