• I'm quiting chemo.

    Asked by marie60 on Wednesday, May 22, 2013

    I'm quiting chemo.

    This Tuesday I'm going for pre-chemo blood work, but I'm telling my onc that I'm not going for the 6th one. Five is enough. I'm tired and I can't do any more.

    20 Answers from the Community

    20 answers
    • CAS1's Avatar
      CAS1

      Marie,

      Ask your Onc if you can take an extra week off before you make that decision. There is a real science to the number of chemos you need. They have studied this for many many years.

      You are tired and you are need a break..Try taking an extra week and then make a decision when you are stronger.

      over 3 years ago
    • Ydnar2xer's Avatar
      Ydnar2xer

      I think CAS1 is right on the money. There IS a reason why the oncs tell us how many chemos we need.
      I'd like to suggest that you and a friend (or significant other) plan a short trip or even weekend get away to RELAX a week or so AFTER you finish chemo. And then go. And do NOTHING! THAT will feel GREAT--nap when you want, eat when & what you want, PAMPER yourself! You will have earned it if you finish the job! And it will give you something to look forward to. It took me a while to get over my chemo--but taking a trip soon after completing it was one of the best things I have ever done in my life! Hang in there, sweetie. You will feel proud of yourself and feel MUCH BETTER after you finish chemo. I'll be sending good mojo your way.

      over 3 years ago
    • SueRae1's Avatar
      SueRae1

      Make that 3 of us. An extra week or two off will probably not have an impact on the results of your treatment. In fact many people miss treatments due to low blood counts, I know I did. Speak with you oncologist and see if you can get a "break", sometimes that's all you need to feel better about your treatment plan. You may also want to ask why it was decided to give you 6 chemo sessions. Protocols are set up for a reason, and each cancer and patient is unique, your team takes that in to account when deciding on the drugs and duration of your treatment.

      over 3 years ago
    • BuckeyeShelby's Avatar
      BuckeyeShelby

      My oncologist actually suggested we drop #6 due to my neuropathy. Since I was diagnosed as stage IV, I pushed to do all. Definitely discuss w/your oncologist before making a decision.

      over 3 years ago
    • IKickedIt's Avatar
      IKickedIt

      I was ready to quit after round 8 (of 12). I told my oncologist I was done. He said, "I don't care how long it takes you to get to the finish line, but you are going to get there." He wanted me to take off two weeks, but as it turned out, I bounced back within a week and begged him to not make me take that second week off.

      I believe your body is telling you it needs a break. So you may go in and find that your blood counts are low. Whenever I just didn't feel right, sure enough my numbers were low.

      Are you only scheduled for one last treatment? It's miserable, but it's a small price to pay. Talk to your oncologist. Maybe he needs to adjust one or two of the drugs to lessen a side effect. I remember telling my surgeon that I didn't care about the short-term recovery of my surgery, just the long-term outlook. Give yourself the best odds possible. Good luck.

      over 3 years ago
    • Nomadicme's Avatar
      Nomadicme

      I urge you to hang in there. There are people that have ended up in the hospital due to treatment, but are around to tell the story. Please don't gove up. Good thoughts your way.

      over 3 years ago
    • Carol-Charlie's Avatar
      Carol-Charlie

      Please rethink this. I was diagnosed with Stage IV Ovarian Cancer... God held my hand and walked me through the six cycles of 28 days - infusions on days 1, 2, and 8... Then after completing that and my hair beginning to come in... He asked me to do a year more... Once a month for 12 months... I did the year. I was 62 at diagnosis and will be turning 70 in 11 days... Please reconsider!
      I meant to tell you too. I've been cancer free for just over 7 years now.

      over 3 years ago
    • Ivy's Avatar
      Ivy

      I agree with the previous answers but want to add my experience. I felt the same way before my 6th chemo treatment, and I was also getting quite worried about growing neuropathy. However, my blood tests indicated a "compromise" was in order. My blood levels were low enough to indicate that a 20% dose reduction was in order, so I went ahead on schedule, and I'm glad I did that and got finished on time. So you might ask your oncologist if this is an appropriate solution for you, too. In the long run, whether a dose reduction or a week's delay is the better choice, I couldn't say. However, when you're really down and at the end of chemotherapy, it feels great to get that last one behind you, so I encourage you to find a way to finish the course. I think you'll be glad you did.

      over 3 years ago
    • Kathy's Avatar
      Kathy

      I can understand how you feel. It's just one too many treatments. The nurse once said to me we never make a decision while in a bad place that will effect the rest of our lives. Hang in there and I pray your oncologist will be able to convince you to do what is in your best interest.

      over 3 years ago
    • ticklingcancer's Avatar
      ticklingcancer

      I would speak with your Oncologist for sure. He may agree with you that it's ok to drop the last treatment. He may also recommend that you continue your treatment. If your Dr does recommend that you finish treatment, you should. You're almost at the finish line. I too was tired of the chemo. I was getting it 5 days in a row. I was so tired of feeling sick and nauseous. I was tired of spending half my day in front of the toilet. I was tried of the fatigue. But you push on, get through treatment and switch to repair mode. Ultimately the decision is yours. As others have said, see if you can take a week off to think about it.

      over 3 years ago
    • anskysue's Avatar
      anskysue

      I am so sorry you are feeling bad. I felt the same way after round 7. My oncologist started me on Ritalin which helped some and gave me a week off. During round 8, my pharmacist and nurse recommended a daily Claritin and Zantac. Those two OTC drugs made a huge difference and I was able to continue. I can do things now (round 10) that I haven't been able to do since round 2 (long flights of stairs, walking around stores, etc.). Best of luck to you.

      over 3 years ago
    • GypsyJule's Avatar
      GypsyJule

      Most of us know how difficult it is to keep going when you are just so tired of the whole thing. Cancer walks in and takes over our lives while we are in treatment. I wish we could all just hold you up and help you through it. I hope you can take a few minutes and look how far you've come since you were diagnosed. Now you are in the home stretch. If you stop chemo now, will you worry more about a reoccurance? In a month, or a year, will you worry that you did everything you could have done to slay the beast? I know you are tired, and I know a this point, you can feel so alone, but you are so close to the finish line. I didn't think I could do it either, and wanted to quit, but I can tell you that a month after my chemo was finished, I felt better than I had in a very long time. Now, just 4 months later, I have energy again. Only you can decide what is right for you, but if you choose to continue that last treatment, you can get through it! You're stronger than you think you are ... you're already a survivor.

      over 3 years ago
    • Carol-Charlie's Avatar
      Carol-Charlie

      May I say one more thing. As I told you, I did almost two years of chemo... I know the side affects quite well. But I kept focusing on the 'return for my investment' in discomfort now...... I was so very tired there was a week I only woke to eat and use the bathroom... well maybe watch TV an hour with my Tom. My life is totally back to me... but it just takes a bit longer now... (Now don't mention I'm 70 now) My feet are pretty much numb (I danced at my Grandson's wedding last year) My hair didn't grow back enough to wear. (I get complements still on how lovely my hair is - Thank you PaulaYoung.com) My fingers sometimes hit the wrong keys, and sometimes drop the pill I'm taking) I pick up the pill and correct my spelling) Sometimes I lose my balance. (I've got the sexiest cane with an Eagle for a handle. (People say "It's me"...) I'm going to another grandson's wedding this coming August...(Identical twin to the one who married last year) Life is wonderful... Go to church each Sunday and Thank God for giving me the strength/stubbornness to keep going. Well that and my one daughter-in-law said if I tried to quit... They'd carry me kicking and screaming to get it. As you're exhausted and think you can't... Look into your future... See yourself doing the things that you still want to do... Tom and I still travel.. we sing in the car and go merrily on our way. This year we're driving down to see my brother in Houston. He lives on his boat and is right on the gulf.... my nieces in their twenties are flying down to see their Grandpa (my brother) and meet me for the first time. Living at opposite ends of the country...... I met one but she doesn't remember she and her mom flew up to Mpls. when Gorbochav was visiting the company I worked for. (spelled his name phonetically ) AND I can't tell you the number of new and wonderful people I've met in the last 8 years.. Take my cyber hand.... I'll walk with you! Okay... I've said my entire peace now.... I do respect you and what you decide... Just wanted to give you the entire picture. (((((Marie)))

      over 3 years ago
    • Clyde's Avatar
      Clyde

      You are absolutely right to say no. But don't write it in stone. As the others have suggested, revisit after a few days when you are feeling stronger. Never be afraid to speak plainly with your doctors but never be afraid to change your mind at a later date and never stop listening to what the med pros have to say even if you disagree with them.

      over 3 years ago
    • JeanB's Avatar
      JeanB

      I just started chemo, had my first session last week. It was ok.....for about 3 days. Not vomiting....just tired, and not myself. On the 4th day I was done. I said I was not going to do any more.....yep, after just one round. Then I spent some time with my adult kids and my grandson. I won't stop chemo for me....and I won't stop chemo for them. You are so strong and so brave. One more......after 5 already....you CAN do it. Prayers to you.

      over 3 years ago
    • Lirasgirl33's Avatar
      Lirasgirl33

      I totally understand where you are coming from. Chemo, side effects, the mental, emotional and physical strength it takes is enough to make you just run away from it. I had serious thoughts anout not doing the last chemo. Figured enough was enough but I completed my last chemo....not enthusiastically, but I did it. As others have said, talk to your doctor about your options, maybe a break would be ok. When I started treatment I told myself "I'll do whatever it takes" and I have. My faith in God has gotten me through many times when I felt I couldn't go on....but I asked for his strength and with his strength I could. Praying and wishing you all the best with whichever decision you decide on. Sending hugs your way.

      over 3 years ago
    • nmill11's Avatar
      nmill11

      I'm going on a short vacation and a wedding at the end of the week. My Oncology Team has told me I could take a week off, but, when I get back I have to be at my best for another wedding on the 14th.
      Marie60 I am sending you a HUG. I understand what you said. Chemotherapy wipes the heck out of a person. I was diagnosed with Primary Peritoneal Carcinoma in February of this year. I have been on Taxol and Carboplatin. After a second CAT Scan a Stage 4 liver tumor was found. It won't be cured, but, is treatable. along with the HUGS is my understanding. There are many days I feel like you. I hate Chemo.

      over 3 years ago
    • raysmom's Avatar
      raysmom

      I'm in agreement with all of the others. My son says everyday, "This is the last time I'm going to chemo" because he is tired, sick, and cranky all the tiime. However, the next day he gets up and lives to fight another day. He is on rest right now between the second and 3rd chemo rounds. Take an extra rest week if possible, evaluate the priority that is your life, and then decide. Five is NOT enough or your doctors would have scheduled you for 5 rounds.

      over 3 years ago
    • marie60's Avatar
      marie60

      Thank you everyone, for your kind responses and valuable experiences. I talked with my doctor and the 2 chemo nurses, and decided to stay with my decision to stop chemo. I just simply could not have done another one. I feel 100% better now that the decision is made, and I'm starting to get my strength back little by little. My CA125 is 9, so that's encouraging. I had a CT scan yesterday for a baseline. Thank you all so much for caring about me, and sharing your thoughts and experiences.

      over 3 years ago
    • Apopsal's Avatar
      Apopsal

      marie60 - I can surely understand your chemo fatigue! I was diagnosed with stage IV endometrial cancer in 2009. I have had 28 months of chemo, various kinds, and 45 radiation treatments. I am not yet in remission, but the treatments are keeping the buggies at bay, and I continue to work (at 69!) and have excellent quality of life despite some side effects. I agree with those who suggest asking your doc about a "chemo vacation". I've had several during my 4 years of treatment. I also encourage you to seek out a support group, or even better, some meditation and arts workshops where you can address your issues. This journey is never easy, but we need each other and all the support we can get. My thoughts are with you!!

      over 3 years ago

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