• What to expect with next round of chemo

    Asked by MrsBCW on Monday, June 10, 2013

    What to expect with next round of chemo

    So, we got through the first round of chemo pretty well. My husband had a couple of days when he crashed - slept a lot - no energy - headache - generally feeling like he was hit by a truck, and then little by little has started feeling better each day. My (our) question is should we expect the same thing after the next round or is there a cumulative effect that each round of chemo gets worse? Thanks a bunch for any imput.

    6 Answers from the Community

    6 answers
    • jhale17's Avatar

      A doctor told me that the side effects from your last chemo are not a predictor of the side effects of your next chemo.

      Some days are better than others. Being proactive aids in the process of getting the day started. So during the days of side effects of my treatments I started the day with developing an activities plan.

      Those days when I was faced with a shortage of stamina and endurance I reevaluated my activities. This was due to my attitude change from saying “why not” to saying “why bother” to most things requiring movement of any kind. Initially this attitude change caused me trouble and something had to change.

      On my first treatment of CHOP chemo I realized that sitting in a recliner and not moving was the most comfort I could find. I took CHOP in Wednesday afternoon and took Thursdays and Fridays off. This gave me four days to recuperate from the treatment. Having a desk I could manage, with a struggle, to work until my next chemo.

      During those four days of total resting I thought I had it made and then came Monday morning. I did pretty well on getting up, showering and eating breakfast. It was when I parked at work and started the long walk from the parking lot that the extreme fatigue set in. My legs started feeling like spaghetti and an overall weakness came over my body. I made it to my desk and with some rest things improved. My four days of almost complete rest had come back to bite me.

      Here are my lessons learned. No matter how much discomfort you have, you must move. I did move after my subsequent treatments. I found it does not take much activity and you do not have to do it for a long time. You can spread it out so that you can avoid getting over tired. Some movement like walking actual improved my comfort level. As you go through your treatments both you and your body learn how to better deal with the side effects. Know that your body is doing things automatically to heal itself from the effects of the treatment to your body. This is normal and a beautiful thing.

      You must be proactive to do things that give your body what it needs to make that adjustment. There can be simple things you can do to make your journey easier. One thing is time; your treatments are not scheduled to last forever and you have to have the mind-set to be willing to hang in there for the duration. Some of the other basics are rest, good nutrition, moderate exercise and drinking lots of water.
      The latter is important. Drinking water is something you forget about or do not like to do. My biopsy was in my throat and it was difficult to swallow. I now keep a journal of the glasses of water I drink each day. Eight glasses per day is good and ten is better for me. One nurse told me that the best three things I can do for myself are 1) drink water, 2) drink water and 3) drink water.

      I have found that beside the doctor’s orders the next best information on how to cope with side effects was from the nurse advocate of the oncologist. Everybody’s side effects are different. My nurse advocate was the one person who got into the details of my side effect symptoms and worked out an action plan for me.

      Keep alert and be proactive to discover those little things that work for you. The time spent is good for the soul.

      over 6 years ago
    • ddkk3's Avatar

      Personally, every time was so different for me. Some days right after chemo, I felt totally normal and energetic. I even remember one time being so energetic the next morning that I wanted to go find a trampoline to jump around on to expend all my energy! The side effects seem to be different every time, too.

      Unfortunately, the effects absolutely are cumulative. Now that I'm at the end, chemo hits me hard and I usually stay in bed for a few days. I slowly regain my energy and feel better and better and then a few days later, I feel totally normal...only to do it all over again!

      over 6 years ago
    • Kate1812's Avatar

      With my treatment I was totally flat down for 10 days
      When my Shot kicked in ( I could tell by pain in
      My bones ,where the blood cells are made). I gradually started to
      Feel better
      By my second round my masses had drastically
      Reduced in size and number.
      The effects are cumulative and by the end of the
      Treatment I did not really care if I lived or died.
      I set small goals like watching an entire series of shows
      On Netflix or documentaries of places I would
      Like to visit
      It was distractions and helped me get through
      The 6 months of treatments
      I also went through my old photos and posted
      My favorite shots on Facebook
      It helped to read my family's responses from around
      The country.
      It is hard , probably the hardest thing you will go through
      But cancer treatment is so precise now, it is amazing,
      But never underestimate the power of prayer.

      over 6 years ago

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