• Why do I all of a sudden feel physically weak just because I was recently diagnosed with breast cancer?

    Asked by mandybruin on Saturday, October 6, 2018

    Why do I all of a sudden feel physically weak just because I was recently diagnosed with breast cancer?

    Oh yeah, breast cancer apparently hasn’t had enough of me so it decided to challenge me to round 2 after 5 years. And during breast cancer awareness month for added effect. She’s a dramatic XXX. I just found out Wednesday, October 3, 2018. I need a belt after this: Two-Time Breast Cancer Champion!!!! Woooooo!!!

    39 Answers from the Community

    39 answers
    • GregP_WN's Avatar
      GregP_WN

      All of us on the team here at WhatNext wish you the best in round 2! I know that feeling when you find out that you have to step up and do it again. I have had 3 diagnoses, it sucks for sure. The one thing you have going for you is that since you've been through it once already, you know what to expect.

      2 months ago
    • mandybruin's Avatar
      mandybruin

      Thank you so much for your response. I am fighting to stay positive. The hardest part is telling people because the automatic response is crying. But, you’re right, I have been through this before, which is why it wasn’t as shocking as it was the first time, just kind of annoying. But here we go! Getting ready for round 2!

      2 months ago
    • Songwriter's Avatar
      Songwriter

      What new treatments do they want to do?
      The freaking Stress and bone chilling fear can challenge the hardiest Physical Specimen. Are you on any meds now? So much is Mental and many of us don't get to see a Psychiatrist or Counselor specializing in cancer pain and mental areas. Fill us in a little bit about what will go on with you....What's dramatic xxx.

      2 months ago
    • LiveWithCancer's Avatar
      LiveWithCancer

      Good luck, @mandybruin!! We are here for you.

      2 months ago
    • mandybruin's Avatar
      mandybruin

      @Songwriter Well, I have my first post-diagnosis with my oncologist on Monday, October 8, so hopefully I’ll know more then. Some websites suggest radiation since it’s a recurrence and I didn’t do radiation the first time. Oh and I got censored. I don’t normally curse but it felt good because I am annoyed by it all, like again with this! I love this website because I get to talk to people who truly understand what I’m going through and not just sympathize. Some people can’t handle discussing the “big C.” I think what I’ll do differently this time is find and join an offline support group. Just trying to find one that fits in my schedule.

      2 months ago
    • mandybruin's Avatar
      mandybruin

      Thanks @LiveWithCancer! :-)

      2 months ago
    • lujos' Avatar
      lujos

      Ditto, girl! Just found out I have a recurrence too, after 4 years free of it. Double mx on Thursday

      2 months ago
    • lujos' Avatar
      lujos

      No rads for me, as I had it last time. Won’t know if there’s lymph involvement til after surgery. No chemo scheduled at this point.

      Coming back so quickly is a bad sign, hence he says they save chemo for the future if need be.

      2 months ago
    • motraveler's Avatar
      motraveler

      My good juju to both of you experiencing a second bout. Thoughts and prayers be with you..

      2 months ago
    • ChildOfGod4570's Avatar
      ChildOfGod4570

      YIKES! I know this has to be a shocker for you. I think the anticipation of returning to active treatment would drain the most burly body builder of his strength. Cancer not only does a number on us physically, but it's emotionally draining as well. I think the emotional side is more exhausting at times. This is why I so strongly feel that a therapist *must* be added to the treatment team!!! [fist pounding the desk] Please know we're all here for you! HUGS and God bless.

      2 months ago
    • mandybruin's Avatar
      mandybruin

      @lujos Yeah, mine was found in the lymph nodes at the base of my neck on the left side (in the clavicle region apparently). I recently started developing lymphedema and noticed a lump there, which I thought I would have checked out just in case it wasn’t part of the lymphedema. I’m so sorry hear that you’ve had a recent recurrence as well. May God bless both of us.

      2 months ago
    • mandybruin's Avatar
      mandybruin

      Thank you @motraveler and thank you @ChildOfGod4570. I definitely plan to pursue counseling. It definitely felt good to have someone to talk to last time.

      2 months ago
    • MLT's Avatar
      MLT

      Dealing with recurrence has been devastating for me. You are right, telling family and friends is so hard, but we need their support! It helps to get all the facts and know what you are dealing with and getting started with treatment seems to help. You know you are strong and will fight hard! But remember it is ok to cry, have to let those emotions out! 3rd time is not a charm!!

      2 months ago
    • JeanieJeffers' Avatar
      JeanieJeffers

      So so sorry to hear about your recurrences. Yes, devastating. counseling really helps. Friends and family support but a place to pour out frustration, fear, anger essential. I too just found a cancer in same breast, 6 years later, a week ago. Like you, waiting to find out next steps. My heart goes out to each of you dealing with this. It’s just awful. I understand the anger, after all we went through the first time.

      2 months ago
    • Bug's Avatar
      Bug

      I have felt very tired when something stressful is going on and then when the stressor is resolved I felt fine again. I've had that happen many times. It still does. For me I think it's some sort of stress response or maybe a coping mechanism (because I tend to sleep more).

      2 months ago
    • Harley12's Avatar
      Harley12

      Praying for everyone dealing with a reoccurrence! Stay strong and don't give up!

      2 months ago
    • fiddler's Avatar
      fiddler

      Mandybruin & lujos......

      Aw, jeez. That sucks. After so much time...

      Mandybruin, I'm surprised you didn't collapse instead of getting fatigued! You can deal with this - you did before and you can deal with it all this time, too. One thing that really helped me was to keep my emotions in check - I went on 'neutral' and didn't 'judge' anything or anybody. That seemed to help me get past treatment and the 2-year recovery afterward.

      Good luck and come back for support!

      2 months ago
    • BoiseB's Avatar
      BoiseB

      I think I read somewhere where shock can do something chemical in the brain to make the muscles weak. It was something about adrenline being redirected. So yeah "weak knees" is normal. That doesn't make it anymore comfortable.

      2 months ago
    • fiddler's Avatar
      fiddler

      BoiseB - yer right. We have a shock and the brain signals the release of cortisol and adrenaline.

      To counter the destructiveness of those two on our DNA, a breathing exercise helps. The exercise has been scientifically proven to alleviate the ill effects of cortisol and adrenaline.

      Breathe normally and concentrate on the heart area. Think of the recurrence of the cancer and feel the icky feelings as intensely as possible. Breathe those feelings in and out of the heart area on the count of 6 in and 6 out. Now think of a time when you were very happy or in awe of something like a sunset or holding a baby and breathe that in and out of the heart area for 6 in and 6 out. Continue to breathe the good juju until the icky feelings are gone. Do this as often as possible throughout the day.

      2 months ago
    • Lynne-I-Am's Avatar
      Lynne-I-Am

      You feel weak because you have been surprised once again by this crappy disease. As survivors we learn about milestones in our treatments. First six months to a year to find out if we are sensitive or resistant to the treatments offered, Then two years comes, if still NED, surveillance lessens, less exams. For many of us five years NED is like catching the gold ring, passing go and collecting , finally able to catch our breath, except it isn’t. This disease does not pay attention to weeks, months or years. I think I have accepted that I can and very well will have a recurrence someday, I just celebrated my five year NED, but I also know when and if I do my reaction will be much like yours- disappointment, sprinkled with some anger and sadness. Wishing you success in beating this xxx to the curb once again and sending you wheelbarrows of support.

      2 months ago
    • mandybruin's Avatar
      mandybruin

      Thank you so much, everyone! I completed a half marathon on Sunday just to prove I am still in control of my body. I’m definitely ready to do battle. I got some favorable news today from my oncologist today: estrogen positive cancer, which she said is good because cancer responds well to hormone therapy, and oral chemo instead of IV chemo. I was told I possibly wouldn’t get as sick with the oral chemo as opposed to the IV chemo but I guess we’ll see. I’m definitely going to try those breathing exercises. :-)

      2 months ago
    • Bug's Avatar
      Bug

      I'm glad you got some good news from the oncologist! And congratulations on the half marathon!

      2 months ago
    • lujos' Avatar
      lujos

      @mandybruin, good news! Mine is the same profile as last time, ER positive. I’m sad to say that despite four years on letrozole, it didn’t do its job, as it recurred anyway! Don’t know what they will prescribe this time round.

      2 months ago
    • Maryflier's Avatar
      Maryflier

      Second time for me too. Stay strong!!!

      2 months ago
    • fiddler's Avatar
      fiddler

      lujos & Maryflier and all with recurrence, my heart aches for you!

      I sometimes wonder what I would do if it happened to me. Would you share what your thoughts come to your minds upon receiving the diagnosis the 2nd time around? Do you make a pact to do your bucket list? Do you want to stop working and do the things that bring you pleasure? If you're up to it, please share.

      2 months ago
    • lujos' Avatar
      lujos

      @fiddler, for me, so far it’s shock, anger and upset. Loads of anger. As the nurse said, I’d done everything right, even sticking with daily letrozole despite the side effects. I’m hoping after my double mastectomy (which also makes me angry) I’ll feel more positive. I’ll know about spread to lymph nodes in the path report, but I’m not hopeful — the last time I had two positive nodes...

      2 months ago
    • MLT's Avatar
      MLT

      3rd time: absolutely devastated, ready to start treatment immediately. Then took the time to pray for guidance for treatment. Felt much calmer after deciding to go to a Breast Center rather than the local hospital where the oncologist treats many types of cancer. Emotions are still up and down, but I have confidence in my oncologist.

      2 months ago
    • pianoplayer's Avatar
      pianoplayer

      I have been stage 4 since 2011 and now my cancer once hormone caused changed and will not respond to any more hormones, Looks like bad chemo again no 3 . trouble is I am so weak . Dr said its the cancer. Hard time breathing too.

      2 months ago
    • Maryflier's Avatar
      Maryflier

      @fiddler. Hi. After the 1st diagnosis I was angry, had the whole WHY ME? thing going on. This time, I felt dread and extreme sadness. No more WHY ME? anymore because, unfortunately, it seems to be happening to everyone! I didn’t make a pact to do my bucket list ( my husband hates that expression, thinks the thought focuses on death). It’s @ 1 year after my 2nd diagnosis, done with chemo, reconstructive surgery completed , my hair is growing back nicely. We plan on traveling again this winter - back on life’s highway after spending a year broken down on the shoulder!
      @lujos I’m so sorry you had a recurrence even after taking letrozole. One of my friends stopped taking the AI completely because of the side effects. I have already switched from anastrozole to exemestane because of side effects. Good luck with your surgery.
      @mandybruin. I do a few basic exercises that are for lymph drainage, only takes a few minutes a day.
      www.livestrong.con/article93406-exercises-lymphatic-drainage/. I started doing them when I felt tired during the months that I has chemo but I still do them. A few of these are also done at an exercise class I go to for cancer survivors.
      For EVEYONE. I go to a support group and an exercise class at JCC which is a Sid Jacobson Community Center. The JCCs are basically YMCA facilities but Jewish. I’m not Jewish, they are open to everyone. I am in New York but there are many programs available across the country. I strongly recommend a support group to everyone struggling. Support from family and friends is great but there is a feeling of serenity at a support group that is special. Good luck to everyone, you are in my prayers.

      2 months ago
    • mandybruin's Avatar
      mandybruin

      @fiddler I’ve just felt a mixture of annoyance at having to go through this yet again and lack of motivation/energy to do anything else. I want to both work and do things that bring me pleasure, which I’ve been doing since the last time I was diagnosed with cancer. Sometimes it takes a little effort to do the things I enjoy/need to do but everyday is different. Plus, we cannot let cancer win or give it an easy victory as the case may be. Must keep fighting, even when it’s a little more difficult at times. :-)

      about 1 month ago
    • mandybruin's Avatar
      mandybruin

      @Maryflier I will definitely look into the exercises. My arm has gone down a lot with the exercises I’ve gotten from my PT and the aerobic exercises. I was doing massages as well as recommended by my PT, which were also helping, but was told to hold off for now as it could cause the cancer to spread.

      about 1 month ago
    • Maryflier's Avatar
      Maryflier

      Massages can cause the cancer to spread? I’ve never heard that!

      about 1 month ago
    • mandybruin's Avatar
      mandybruin

      @Maryflier My recurrence was found in my lymph nodes and the purpose of the massage I was doing was to move fluid through my lymph nodes so my PT didn’t want to chance it. A lot of studies say massage is okay in general for cancer patients though.

      about 1 month ago
    • Maryflier's Avatar
      Maryflier

      Thanks mandybruin.

      about 1 month ago
    • MLT's Avatar
      MLT

      I have had lymphatic massages at a breast center recently, nothing was mentioned about it being a problem. Will certainly ask next visit to Dr.!
      Yes, massages really help lymphedema. Also, wearing sleeve. Look into a night time sleeve. It is quilted and massages the arm all night. My insurance pays for these, worth looking in to.

      about 1 month ago
    • JeanieJeffers' Avatar
      JeanieJeffers

      So many recurrences. Just awful. Yes, maryflier, dread and extreme sadness here. Glad you are back and doing well! Question: Were your second cancers same as first? Six years ago, er+her2+, TCH, Herceptin 1 year, rads, lumpectomy, 5 years Femara.....now: triple negative, same breast, 2.5 cm sprouted same breast. Did everything right with nutrition, exercise, organic, clean products, etc, etc.

      about 1 month ago
    • Maryflier's Avatar
      Maryflier

      JeanieJeffers I don’t know if the recurrence was same as original cancer. I am HER2negERPRpos. I think I asked my doctor but I don’t remember what he said. Right breast both times.

      about 1 month ago
    • mandybruin's Avatar
      mandybruin

      @JeanieJeffers Yes, my recurrence was the same as my initial cancer, ER+. They think maybe some cells got left behind that just weren’t detectable (if that’s the case, thank you, cancer cells, for staying dormant for 5 years). @MLT I did get fitted for a night sleeve but I’ve been waiting on approval for a while. Well, less than but almost a month I suppose. Right now I sleep in layers of bandages (they gave me a kit that wraps me from my fingers to my armpit), which have been helpful as well. I’m just mainly focused on getting this treatment done and over with.

      about 1 month ago
    • JeanieJeffers' Avatar
      JeanieJeffers

      You have your treatment protocol yet? @mandybruin

      about 1 month ago

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