Im on round 1 of chemo, will I be ok to go on holiday?

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Hi everyone, this is my first blog ever so not sure if I'm on the right place. I underwent breast surgery earlier this year. I had no idea I had a tumour, it was picked up on my first mammogram. I had thought I just needed a short course of radiotherapy afterwards so I was shocked when told I needed chemo due to the higher oncotype score. It had taken so long to get the oncology appointment after surgery that I had to start chemo straight away. I'm on day 5 after my first treatment. Day 2&3 were ok, I was tired but otherwise felt pretty normal. Then yesterday, my day 4, I felt exhausted. I had anti sickness meds to the end of day 3 to then see how I felt. I also started 7 days of filgrastim to boost white blood cells from day 3 so I'm not sure if the sickness is the chemo or the filgrastim. I have the worst taste in my mouth, which is sore and a bit numb, feel constantly queasy and really tired and am ping ponging between constipation and the opposite which is making it worse. Mornings are the worst, its like morning sickness with added bone pain on top! I had booked a holiday with my daughter and we are due to go in a week. If I had known that chemo was on the cards I would have postponed it but now its to close and due to an error on my part with insurance we either go or we lose the money. My Doctor says I'm ok to travel provided I feel up to it. I really want to go as the thought of a short break has really kept us going through this difficult year but I'm worried this sick feeling isn't going to stop and I don't want to be stuck alone in Malta with a teenager and be to ill to do anything as that isn't fair to her. I just wondered what everyone else's experience has been? Does the nausea stop after a few days or am I likely to have this all the time until the end of treatment? Id welcome any advice. 

  • Hi  and as it’s your first post welcome to the community.

    A holiday always sounds great but as treatments used and the resulting after effects can be ever so different across cancer types it would be worth copying this to the Breast cancer support group I see you have already joined as you will get experience from people who have walked the exact same walk.

    Your consultant saying you can go if you feel up to it is easy for them to say but they don’t have that crystal ball.

    Remember that each treatment can result in different side effects so you can’t compare your last treatment with your next.

    The treatments I went through made me very open to infections so the thought of being abroad, stuck in hopital with say Neutropenic Sepsis was not high on my list of things I wanted to deal with…… although I would not have been able to get any insurance to cover me anyway.

    If you took out your insurance before the change in your treatment you do need to inform them as if anything happens you may have issues with a claim ((hugs))

    Mike (Thehighlander)

    It always seems impossible until its done - Nelson Mandela

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  • Hello! Stage 2 Hodgkins lymphoma here!

    I haven't asked my team about going away during treatment but I debated seeing my grandparents in Ireland pre-treatment. I asked my team and they said make sure you have insurance, that you know where your closest A&E is, you have a folder of your health information, and of course all tablets. In the end I decided not to as I'd just been discharged from A&E following fertility preservation complications and I didn't want to put my grandparents through the stress of driving me to their closest A&E an hour away if anything should happen...

    I'm on round 3 of chemo (just dropped down to ABVD from EscBEACOPDac) and generally sickness does get better after each session. Make sure you take your anti-sickness before you actually feel sick. Just make it a part of your routine (assuming obviously it's okay to do so). My routine is to take domperidone for 7 days, aprepitant and odansetron for 5 days, and cyclizine when I need it (usually days 1-3 and 8 as I was on chemo where I'd be in days 1-3 and 8). 

    I also did filgrastim on rounds 1 and 2 and my only side effect from them was bone pain. I don't want to worry you because I think I was just very unlucky but my bone pain got to a 10/10 and I needed a cocktail of morphine, codeine, and paracetamol to make it somewhat manageable. Luckily, I was already in hospital for sepsis when it happened in round 2 so they were very quickly able to deal with it. I don't think it's at all common to have it be that bad, but some bone pain can be expected so have paracetamol to hand.

    If you do decide to go, which I think would be lovely for you and your daughter especially given your doctor said you could go, make sure you're extra careful with infections. Wear a mask, carry hand sanitiser, be careful with food and drink etc. I've been told that ideally I shouldn't get public transport but if I do then I need to wear a mask, travel off peak, sit away from others, don't touch my face, wash my hands after... so I think just follow that sort of advice? 

    Hope this helps somewhat!