• Someone asked me what chemo brain was. Instead of giving them a clinical description about the side effect from chemo I gave told them this:

    Asked by GregP_WN on Friday, January 15, 2016

    Someone asked me what chemo brain was. Instead of giving them a clinical description about the side effect from chemo I gave told them this:

    1) It's when I let the dog outside to pee, and 30 minutes later I'm asking my Wife where the dog is.
    2) It's seeing someone you went to school with, one of your best friends, and going blank on their name.

    What example would you use to describe chemo brain?

    22 Answers from the Community

    22 answers
    • DoreenLouise's Avatar
      DoreenLouise

      Stating words in a sentence backwards, out of order.

      almost 5 years ago
    • Kris103's Avatar
      Kris103

      Knowing I need to go to the store, but not knowing what for. I need to take notes for everything!

      I like your dog example, Greg. I've done that to my Aussie a few times.

      almost 5 years ago
    • TXHills' Avatar
      TXHills

      It is suddenly having dyslexia for both reading and writing, when I've never had it before.
      It is a long lag time waiting for the right word to come to me, when speaking.

      almost 5 years ago
    • TXHills' Avatar
      TXHills

      It is having a great deal of trouble learning and retaining new information, which requires MUCH more repetition than usual for you.

      almost 5 years ago
    • Hussy's Avatar
      Hussy

      Telling the doctor you have concerns about your "cauliflower" (gallbladder).

      almost 5 years ago
    • Lynne-I-Am's Avatar
      Lynne-I-Am

      It is forgetting, forgetting, forgetting.

      almost 5 years ago
    • DoreenLouise's Avatar
      DoreenLouise

      I've read clinical studies that opine there is no such thing as chemo brain. We have underlying cognitive difficulties that became apparent during treatment. As we all know, our chemo brain got better as time went on. This is part of the reason that I do not believe all clinical studies are trustworthy.

      almost 5 years ago
    • DoreenLouise's Avatar
      DoreenLouise

      I've read clinical studies that opine there is no such thing as chemo brain. We have underlying cognitive difficulties that became apparent during treatment. As we all know, our chemo brain got better as time went on. This is part of the reason that I do not believe all clinical studies are trustworthy.

      almost 5 years ago
    • Ejourneys' Avatar
      Ejourneys

      1. Reading a paragraph in a book and remembering ... crickets.
      2. The shortest distance between thinking of a To Do list item and writing it down is -- what was the question?
      3. Depending on the conversation, listening to someone and hearing Charlie Brown "adult speak" (this one comes in handy sometimes).

      almost 5 years ago
    • Lynne-I-Am's Avatar
      Lynne-I-Am

      How much time has to go by for it to get better? I am two years out and counting. If I do not act on something I have done or need to do the moment I think about it, it is forgotten. I too make a list when leaving the house for shopping. I stand before a cupboard and wonder why I am there, the other day I was searching for my keys, I was holding them. Was not like this prior to chemo and family has no history of dementia. I am 69, have good long term memory, but short term memory is shot. Try to excercise my mind with Sudoko and keep active. I think this memory thing is a result of the Cisplatin I was on., but short term memory loss is an ok tradeoff for being In the here and now.

      almost 5 years ago
    • gap122041's Avatar
      gap122041

      Having to look up simple words in the dictionary. I am also having stuttering and short time memory problems. I write down any thing that is important and mark them on my calendar.

      almost 5 years ago
    • barbdee's Avatar
      barbdee

      Forgetting hearing from someone else, what we were to do. Feeling as if my entire brain is made of cotton. Forgetting everything not on a list & then forgetting the list!

      almost 5 years ago
    • alscut12's Avatar
      alscut12

      Confusion and frustration. It comes and goes. The only problem is you don't know when it is coming or going. Hard to make plans because of it.
      Like every other side effect you just have to deal with it.

      almost 5 years ago
    • BoiseB's Avatar
      BoiseB

      The most humiliating part of chemo brain was becoming completely dependent on spell check and grammar check. Not only did I type sentences backward I typed the words backward. I also found a lot of long term memory went. I had to have my birthdate written down or my daughter had to tell the receptionists my birthdate.
      I also forgot to put on articles of clothing. I once arrived at an overheated church service without my blouse

      almost 5 years ago
    • LiveWithCancer's Avatar
      LiveWithCancer

      I was once an excellent speller and had great grammar ... no longer. (And, when I began that sentence, there were 3 things I did well and I already have forgotten the third.)

      My long term memory isn't good, but my short-term memory is horrible.

      I love to read, but rarely read more than short blurbs now. My comprehension skills have gone by the wayside.

      I change sentences all of the time because the word I want to use totally disappears from my mind. (That was the third think I was going to mention above - I once had an excellent vocabulary, but that is totally gone.)

      I was never good with names, but now I am terrible. My mind will go blank on the names of people I have known and loved for a long time. It is so embarrassing and frustrating.

      almost 5 years ago
    • meyati's Avatar
      meyati

      I had a good example, but I forgot what it was.

      almost 5 years ago
    • ItsMeJennifer's Avatar
      ItsMeJennifer

      This happened to a friend, but answers the question well. My friend was on a ladder and needed to use a hose. Her mom was near the hose but my friend couldn't think what to call it so she said: "Mom, would you please hand me the green thing with the water going through it." Makes me laugh every time I think of it but it's happened to me so many times. You just have to laugh!

      almost 5 years ago
    • coco5253's Avatar
      coco5253

      I've been known to tell my husband an interesting story only to discover he's the one that told it to me earlier.

      almost 5 years ago
    • Richardc's Avatar
      Richardc

      Inability to focus, can't multitask. Takes total concentration to perform work or completes some tasks. Forgetting names but remembering faces. Total frustration with not being able to get the words out to describe things. But, it slowly gets better.

      almost 5 years ago
    • JennyMiller's Avatar
      JennyMiller

      Lapses in a sentence due to inability to remember the word I want to use. Husband is great at filling in word for me. A little confusion at times whereas I will stop and think it out. The swift passage of time is more pronounced as I get older so that chemo brain can make it all a little fuzzy. My sense of balance can be off - a little stagger here and there. What is odd is that it can all be well for a time period and then it will come back.

      almost 5 years ago
    • BuckeyeShelby's Avatar
      BuckeyeShelby

      Jenny, I am SO with you. I'll just stare blankly into space, hoping that missing word will drift by. And it's stupid stuff, like spoon or alarm clock. If it were some scientific term or name of a med or something, I could understand. But spoon!?!? Sigh...

      almost 5 years ago
    • HeidiJo's Avatar
      HeidiJo

      The dog example is funny Greg! I once dumped an entire pot of spaghetti in the sink because I forgot to put the colander in the sink! I also asked my son what that thing that you put on your foot is called. He said " Shoe?" no, the other thing. "Sock?" Yes! that's it!

      almost 5 years ago

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