A support group for anyone affected by melanoma to come together, share experiences, and ask questions.

Pembrolizumab side effects



My first post.

I was diagnosed with my 4th cancer, and first secondary, in December 2018, a secondary Melanoma in my lungs.

 I started a course of Pembrolizumab in February 2019. I suffer from IBS in any case so the side effects which affect my digestion were horrendous, I’m now prescribed Ensure Plus for my nutritional needs, and I top up with light food when I can eat.

 I developed a blockage of the gall duct which had to be corrected with a stent, this is a known, but rare, side effect.
The insertion did not go well and I was on in hospital for 3 days for what was supposed to be a day procedure and discharged with Oramorph to deal with the pain, on one occasion I slept myself into a Morphine withdrawal! I’m through that now.

My Pembro was paused in mid November. The stent is due to be removed in a weeks time after all the necessary scans are completed, hopefully still  showing full remission. I’m not holding my breath on that one with my luck.

 I am still suffering from the Pembro side effects which is truly horrible considering how long it’s been since the treatment stopped.

I just hope that side effect doesn’t come back.

Posted by

Hi , welcome to the online community, that’s some rough stuff that you’ve been through in the last year or two. I still find it strange how the same drug affects us all differently. I have had Pembro for a year April 2016 to 17, and then from June 18 and still ongoing. My side effects have been minimal, I’m sorry to hear that yours have not been the same, but pleased to hear your no evidence of disease pending your next scan results. I’m reading that your not feeling confident about those next results though. but I’m assuming that’s because of your bad run of luck rather than any new symptoms. It’s not always easy keeping going with positive feelings, and awaiting scans and results are the more difficult times.

 I have a scan due 7/2 and hope results will be ready for my appointment on 26/2, I’m hoping for no evidence of disease again but, last time I had a flare up in a node although the biopsy showed later it was melanoma dying. I have often considered doing the Hope course, (2&1/2hours a week) and I’m finally booked on it starting 4/2, so I am hoping that will give me some positive vibes over the 6 weeks that it runs and some techniques to carry me forward.

 I am wondering if you are still doing your cricket, straight after my walking netball session, I see there is a walking cricket session, but I’ve had enough by then. It’s good to have something in the week to look forward to isn’t it. 


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