• Chemo & Radiation

    Asked by Texanfan on Friday, April 5, 2013

    Chemo & Radiation

    How long after chemo & radiation does it take for your body to get back to normal? If there even is a "normal"! I finished chemo on Aug 21,2012 & radiation on Dec 7,2012. I still feel tired and with some lower back pain.

    13 Answers from the Community

    13 answers
    • Nancebeth's Avatar

      I was told it could be anywhere from 2-5 years.

      over 3 years ago
    • Peroll's Avatar

      It can take quite a while to get back to normal and the new normal may never be the same. Chemo and radiation seem to accelerate the aging process, at least it has for me, and so I never expect to be back to where I was. One thing that can help is to get a referal for physical therapy that will help to get your mussles stronger as chemo and radiation tend to make us weaker and getting stregnth back will help. Good Luck

      over 3 years ago
    • KarynBe's Avatar

      It will be 5 years for me in July. It seems like it took forever for me to get my strength back. remember your body is not the same as it was before. It's going to take some time to find it's "new" normal. Start taking care of your body from the inside first. Drink lots of water and juices, take your vitamins and get out in the sun for some healthy vitamin D. Also get your body moving. Gentle yoga, stretches or a nice walk around the block will get your blood circulating. Your body has been through a lot. There are a lot of residual stuff from the chemo and rads that can linger. It can take awhile to get rid of it and start feeling less tired. But I promise you, you will feel better. It will happen.

      over 3 years ago
    • SueRae1's Avatar

      Just take care of yourself, try to mange your energy, take it slow and easy, and do lots of things you enjoy. You deserve to pamper yourself. Remember everyone is different - I was told a year was the minimum amount of time, but each person has their own set of unique factors, chemo used, duration, etc that will influence healing time

      over 3 years ago
    • karen1956's Avatar

      It varies from person to person....but at a minumum for every month that you were in Tx, you need a month to recover.....some people talk about the new normal.....

      over 3 years ago
    • CAS1's Avatar

      I finished Chemo in Nov/Dec too. Almost 1 year of treatment. I am no where near what I used to be. I feel like I had laid in bed for a year. I take it day by day. I am back on the tread mill but no where near what I used to do. My Dr's said at least 1 year from surgery which will be July.

      over 3 years ago
    • Queen_Tatiana's Avatar

      My husband has been battling colon cancer for 8+ years now and on his longest chemo-free period we kept waiting for him to feel back to normal, but he never got there. Still has never gotten back to normal and no longer expects to. He's happy to still be here and committed to fighting the cancer and does what he can when he can, but as for activities such as tent camping, hiking, and even getting to the gym, those days are over for him.

      over 3 years ago
    • JennyMiller's Avatar

      I was told that it takes a full 6 months for the chemo to get out of your system. As for the effects on your body, everyone would be different. It has been a year since my last chemo and I will still get "couch" days once in awhile. I was concerned until I read these posts today -- apparently, it is a slow process and takes time. The good days are increasing so I will focus on them and make every effort to maintain that positive attitude that is so important. As for "back to normal" -- I don't think we will be ever be the same person mentally or physically again -- but that is not a bad thing because I am sure that we have all learned what is important in life, etc. Hang in there -- I wish you the best.

      over 3 years ago
    • Texanfan's Avatar

      Thank you all for responding. This has been a life changing experience. I am thankful for every day The Lord gives me.God Bless each one of you.

      over 3 years ago
    • Hppyldy's Avatar

      NORMAL??? I am a 15 yr survivor and my treatment dates were similiar to yours. Rest as much as possible because all your cells have changed. You will feel normal when you feel normal. Take good care of yourself and give you lots of care as you would give to other family and friends. Everyone is different. Love yourself a lot. Get soothing treatments, like a massage, accupuncture, nice baths with candles, soon you will be "NORMAL" Everything is new and so are you.

      over 3 years ago
    • mcowett's Avatar

      I been thinking about this same thing for awhile now. At one point I got sort of angry because no one told me how long it actually takes to "recover" I would say "people lie". . . But today I think that recovery from cancer treatments is not like recovery from any other sickness. There is no going BACK to how we felt there is only moving FORWARD into a place a wellness, and that is where we will find this thing called "normal". Further more; how well we want to feel is up to us.
      Cheers to us!! broccoli smoothies for all of us : )))) *giggle

      over 3 years ago
    • sandikf's Avatar

      I like you am beginning to wonder if there is a 'normal'. From what I was told you can feel tired for months especailly from radiation. Heck it can be gone than pow back again. I finished chemo and radiation in July 2012 then radiation to brain in Nov 2012. There are days that are good others I can't seem to stay awake. It is just in the last month month and a half that I am getting energy back ( it doesn't help that after Christmas I got a sinus infection that took a month to get rid of). Figure I'll just take it one day at a time.

      over 3 years ago
    • jad's Avatar

      My fatigue has been negligible. I finished chemo (4 cycles, 3 weeks in between) in mid-January 2013, and finished radiation (33x M-F) the the end of March. I pushed myself to exercise during all of the treatments, taking care not to over do. I didn't exercise as many days as I did prior to Dx, and I also cut back on the intensity. But I'm now very close to what I was doing prior to treatment. I think the exercise has helped immensely. Yes,l on occasionally I crash at some unexpected time, and need to sleep. But it's not a lingering fatigue. I've managed to avoid colds or sinus infections, so I don't know how I'd react to that. I

      So far, I regard myself as very very fortunate. I certainly have other annoying side effects - but will either live with them (I can) or they will slowly improve on their own. I have yet to start the 5 years min. of meds (tamoxifen? AIs? and I hope I do well on what is prescribed). Another adventure..... who needs that?

      over 3 years ago

    Help the community by answering this question:

    Create an account to post your answer Already have an account? Sign in!

    By using WhatNext, you agree to our User Agreement, and Privacy Policy

    Read and answer more breast cancer questions.  Also, don't forget to check out our Breast Cancer page.