Starting chemo in 2 weeks

Hi all, 

I am starting chemo on the 18th and was hoping to hear of any tips/advice of how to deal with it, what to take to hospital for the few hours that I am there. Any stories that will help me get through it. I will not be working for the next few months as I have to stay away from school, going to really miss all the kids. Looking forward to hearing from you.  Xx

Christine  

  • Hi, 

    im afraid I can’t help with any tips and advice as I’m due to start soon too so will be keen to hear responses. However, have you had any advice re shielding and Covid while you’re having the chemo? 

    Thanks and best of luck for your chemo xx 

  • Hi, 

    I haven’t been told anything about shielding I don’t really go out much anyway. I just know I can’t take anyone into the hospital unit while I have the chemo. A bit worried about the hospital I am going to as there has been a lot of Covid cases in that area recently. When do you start your chemo? Xx

    Christine

  • I can only give you both second hand tips that we used for my mum and other posters advise.

    always recommends a long lead for your phone charger. Download some movies to keep you entertained . Kindle or book , headphones for music or movies .

    Practically depending on how your chemo is being administered loose , comfortable clothing for easy access to your chemo line . Also think about toilets. Nice easy to remove garments .

    This part affected my mum the most was the transfer to the car . Some chemo interacts with the cold so you need to cover your throat and mouth . The whole of society is now doing it ! But a scarf round your mouth , nose and throat area .

    We also took a flask of tepid water . Not hot , not cold . As she had a strange sensation in her throat and small sips helped . If your getting collected in a car a warm blanket was there too . Only once needed a wee sick dish ! 
    On the return home she was able to have a small bowel of soup and rested and slept most of the night . Part of her chemo was metabolised after twelve hours so she was back to her usual self for her toilet trip in the middle of the night .

    The staff were great . Very reassuring . My mum had a cannula so used a wee heat pad .

    She did not touch anything cold , no fridges and wore little linen gloves which were really helpful . She also had a tube of skin cream handy for her feet . 

    Hopefully others will have more practical info as it’s so individual but that was her experience and what we worked with .

    I wish you both the very best and hope it all goes very smoothly .

    Court 

     

  • Hi Court, 

    Thankyou for all the useful information I will try and absorb it all so I have everything ready for the big day! You are a great help and I appreciate it very much! Xx

    Christine

  • Hi Christine 

    I started Xelox last week so am now on week 2 of my first cycle. Last week was tough, I felt very tired and suffered with numbness/tingling in my fingers. This week is better but am conscious of not picking up an infection. 
    Like you I work in a school and am devastated at not being able to go back in September. 
    I keep hearing mixed messages about shielding/social distancing so would be interested to hear what other people are doing. We’re going for a walk every day but I’m really missing seeing friends and family. I think we can still meet as long as outside and socially distanced. 

    Julia x

  • Hi Cake5. Here’s what I found useful. 

    Headphones to cut out the chatter I didn’t want to hear - some dear folk need to talk but you may prefer not to have to listen. 

    Warm clothes to put on afterwards as it can make you feel the cold. 

    A neck cushion. Books. Puzzles. Phone. Distractions. Pens  and pencils. Wipes. MASK.

    All the paperwork, booking forms, blood test forms etc to avoid holdups. Diary so you can book next session there and then. 

    The nursing staff know how to minimise the unpleasant side effects, and how to make the chemo as effective as possible. They are amazing people. 

    Every blessing
    Wellspring
  • Hi Julia, 

    i am going to be having Xelox too, really hoping it works well with my body and not suffer too much either. I have had good tips/advice from Court and Wellspring so will have my bag ready with all that I need to keep me going during my time at the hospital. No one has told me to shield from others but when I go out to the shops I wear a mask and I have met up with a few close friends in their gardens. I will message you when I start chemo and compare notes. Hope it goes well for you take care. 

    Christine

  • Hi Wellspring, 

    Thanks for the great tips/advice I do like the idea of taking headphones as you say sometimes you just don’t want to listen! Appreciate your message! 

    Christine 

  • Hi Christine 

    I’m definitely feeling better this week, so hoping this lasts until the end of the cycle before starting again. Good luck for when your treatment starts on the 18th, let me know how it goes. 

    Julia x

  • Hi Julia

    Goid to hear you are feeling better this week and that your next cycle goes well. Not long now till I start and will let you know how it goes. Take care

    Christine xx