Experiences with Chemo brain

“Chemo brain” is a term used to describe the forgetfulness, brain fogginess, trouble thinking, and mental challenges associated with cancer treatment. Chemo brain can happen during or after cancer treatment. Chemotherapy affects people differently; some patients never experience chemo brain, and others experience it long term. Common symptoms of chemo brain include forgetting, trouble concentrating, trouble multi-tasking, difficulty remembering words, short term memory loss, and overall trouble doing things that used to come naturally. A lot of cancer patients and their families have to joke about chemo brain, but the truth is that it really does affect your daily routine and force some changes to be made.

A lot of WhatNexter’s anticipate chemotherapy treatment and wonder, ‘Just what is “chemo brain”?’. Chemo brain can be struggling to complete sentences, having trouble picking the right word to describe something, getting lost when having a conversation, walking into a room and forgetting why you are there, and difficulty reading or staying attentive while reading. Fortunately, WhatNexter’s have shared ways that they have coped with chemo brain. They suggest explaining it to family members, loved ones, and co-workers so that they are not surprised by your challenges; they also suggest not getting to discouraged by the things you cannot do. Instead, use coping tools such as writing everything down, setting alarms for appointment times, focusing on one task a time, doing activities that will work your mind, and do your best to keep on going through the fog. Share what coping tools have worked for you, and read what others have posted below.

    • mahina
    • Experience with Squamous Cell Carcinoma...
    almost 6 years ago
    mahina's Avatar

    Chemo brain

    Side Effects

    Hard time focusing. Seemed to be having an out of body experience, going through the motions but sometimes not all there.

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    1 Comment
    • GRAMI
    • Experience with Colorectal (Colon) Cancer
    almost 6 years ago
    GRAMI's Avatar

    Chemo brain

    Side Effects

    Almost every side effect possible.

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    0 Comments
    • Blue_Sky
    • Experience with Squamous Cell Carcino...
    almost 6 years ago
    Blue_Sky's Avatar

    Chemo brain

    Side Effects

    Chemo brain was minimal, a little rough for about 2 weeks, then subsided. I didn't make or have any real plans during this time, an...

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    0 Comments
  1. almost 6 years ago
    patricia1179's Avatar

    Chemo brain

    Side Effects

    Extreme back pain from chemo so I had to have Demerol & muscle relaxer added to chemo, Constipation, Hair loss, mouth dryness & sore...

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    1 Comment
    • smit8100
    • Experience with Breast Cancer in Men
    almost 6 years ago
    smit8100's Avatar

    Chemo brain

    Side Effects

    I had 17 infusions of IV Abraxane and have had.chemo brain since. Sometimes more frequently than others. At first it was very anno...

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    0 Comments
  2. about 6 years ago
    FranChastain's Avatar

    Chemo brain

    Side Effects

    After my 6th cycle of chemo I noticed that I was reaching for words and they wouldn't come. I couldn't be trusted to do my own meds....

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    0 Comments
  3. about 6 years ago
    theflyingaunt's Avatar

    Chemo brain

    Side Effects

    The odd word would seem to "fly away" just as I was about to speak it .. not the same as unable to find a word .. I'd HAD the word a...

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    0 Comments
    • Rev
    • Experience with Breast Cancer
    about 6 years ago
    Rev's Avatar

    Chemo brain

    Side Effects

    low blood pressure, chemo brain, depression, diarrhea, fatigue, hair loss, low white blood count, memory changes, dry mouth, nausea,...

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    0 Comments
    • mintona
    • Experience with Adenocarcinoma, Lung C...
    about 6 years ago
    mintona's Avatar

    Chemo brain

    Side Effects

    Not "Oh no I forgot what I was going to say" chemo brain; scary, unmanageable "Who are you people? There are aliens in the living ro...

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    0 Comments
    • Dgroth02
    • Experience with Ovarian and Fallopian...
    about 6 years ago
    Dgroth02's Avatar

    Chemo brain

    Side Effects

    Can't always find or use the correct word. I know what I want to say but it's not what comes out of my mouth

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    1 Comment
    • Chess
    • Experience with Triple-Negative Breast C...
    about 6 years ago
    Chess' Avatar

    Chemo brain

    Side Effects

    I experienced many side effects. Too many to list.

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    0 Comments
    • Jefita
    • Experience with Adenocarcinoma, Lung Ca...
    about 6 years ago
    Jefita's Avatar

    Chemo brain

    Side Effects

    Every thing from leg cramps to lost weight loss

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    0 Comments
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