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Any suggestions for chemo side effects?? Any suggestions for chemo side effects??

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  #11  
Unread 01-08-2004, 10:29 AM
Any suggestions for chemo side effects??

Wow, you ladies are all wonderful! For the first time I'm beginning to have hope that the chemo might be somewhat easier than I thought. I bought a wig yesterday to be prepared for the inevitible so now feel armed and ready. Did anyone else still feel abdominal pain after the 3rd post op week? I cannot get by yet without the pain meds, which is really bothering me. My stomach is also such a weird shape now (probably due to the debulking and omentectomy I assume) that sometimes I feel about 5 months pregnant! Oh well, thank goodness for elastic waistbands. :-)
I hope you are all doing well with your recoveries and thank you SO much for helping me through this. I'm so thankful for you all.
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  #12  
Unread 01-08-2004, 02:18 PM
Any suggestions for chemo side effects??

Judy:

The first chemo is always the scariest. It's that fear of the unknown. I remember being very worried, and telling my husband that I can do surgery-no problem, but chemo I was afraid of.

After the 1st one, you know what to expect. I felt queasy on days 1-3 and had severe leg pains days 3-5. Tiredness was all the time. But, after 5-7 days, I regained some strength. I did make sure to lay down and rest at least once a day between cycles. Also, sometimes the difference between not feeling good and feeling good was a glass of water.

Good luck with your treatments. I'll be ing for you.

S
  #13  
Unread 01-08-2004, 03:24 PM
Any suggestions for chemo side effects??

Dear Judy,

Another ovaca 3Cer here! (I wish there weren't so many of us, but it's nice to know that we're not alone, isn't it?)

First off, Karenann meant that "Zofran" helped with her nausea, not Taxol. :-)

Second, my experience with chemo was a little worse than most, but my doctors say that the younger folks tend to feel more pain. I was 37 when I started chemo (am 38 now), and I had lots of nausea, tons of bone pain throughout the treatment (Days 3, 4 and 5 in particular), and terrible constipation.

Look into taking Colase as a stool softener, but be sure to take it the night before, morning of, evening of, and in the a.m. and p.m. for 3-4 days after chemo. When I could finally eat, I only wanted potato chips and onion dip, since the body craves salty fat after adrenal stress (which chemo causes). That and chocolate ice cream. So getting fiber into your system isn't all that easy.

Take more Colase than you think you need, and it'll help keep you from suffering the agonizing pain that constipation can cause. And be SURE to drink a TON of water. At least 2 liters per day. If you take just a few sips every 10 minutes, you'll get the right amount of water in. It's work, but it's important.

Mouth sores are another common side effect that you'll want to watch out for. When your white count gets smacked down by the chemo, your health mouth bacteria goes away. You'll definitely notice more plaque (be sure to FLOSS every day, or twice a day, as some people get lots of cavities after chemo). But in addition to brushing, you'll want to rinse your mouth out with Biotene non-alcohol mouthwash or baking soda mixed with warm water -- after eating or drinking ANYTHING that is not water.

Mouth sores (or canker sores) hurt like the dickens, and they will also postpone your chemo, since by law hospitals cannot give chemo if you have a mouth sore. So it's important to try to prevent them if you can.

I had a lot of trouble sleeping, so if you can get a prescription sleep aid to help with those days right after chemo when you might still be on steroids (to prevent allergic reaction), that will help.

Once you get through the pain/nausea days, you will probably be very fatigued. So take it easy! But if you can manage it, try to take walks to keep your blood circulating and your organs pumping. I walked all through chemo (except for several days of each treatment), and it really helped me keep my strength up.

My experience with chemo was a little more severe than other people's has been, and everyone tolerates it differently. But the anticipation is just awful. It's easier once you have that first treatment. (And my hair did start coming out on the 14th day. I cried and cried.)

I wish you the best of luck! Keep us posted on how things are going. And like Karen, I will be interested to hear if there is anothe primary. Where was the metastasis? Why do they think there might be another cancer?

s!
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  #14  
Unread 01-08-2004, 04:06 PM
Any suggestions for chemo side effects??

Hi Linda and SirenSong; thank you for your replies. :-)
I've taken note of all your suggestions and am adding them to my growing list! The mouth sores are a scary side effect but I know not everyone gets them so I'll just have to wait and see. The mouthwash and flossing will be a good idea, though.
They were thinking that my ovaries might not be the primary site mostly because I had metastasis on all the biopsy sites they took: peritoneum, diaphragm, abd. aorta, appendix and somewhere else that I've forgotten. Apparently my pancreatic tumor marker was "elevated" after surgery, so they'll be watching that with blood and CT scans. That's the one thing that scares me most I think, but I've no choice but to face it if that's the primary. Thank you for all your prayers and hugs ... just knowing others have gone through what I'm facing, and survived, has helped enormously.
Love and hugs to you all ...
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