My saved pages
Ask your questions to our Clinical Nurse Specialist Sue, who has lots of experience...
Thanks for the advice - he's using laxatives now and hopefully that will help. What a nightmare this all is - I really admire all of you who have been through it! I'm just glad he only has to do one cycle and not three!
Hi Folks - sorry to bother everyone again but I have more questions.......
My husband had his second Bleomycin injection on Tuesday and has one more to go - then he's done, thank heavens!
He felt exhausted and not too well yesterday but is much brighter today. He says he just feels completely knackered and weak, with a bit of nausea from time to time but nothing he can't handle. The horrible stomach ache he had after the first round of drugs has now gone but he's disgusted by the smell he produces when he goes to the loo and thinks the chemo has affected the bacteria in his gut. He's now eating probiotic yogurt to see if that helps. He's also finding that nearly everything he eats tastes bad - or just wrong - which is putting him off eating very much at all.
My question is how long should the smell/taste thing go on for? And what about the exhaustion? He's off work at the moment but I wonder if he will be ready to go back at the end of the month as planned if he feels as tired as he does now. He also says he can't concentrate on anything and is finding it hard to do something as simple as read a book or a magazine. His oncologist did say this would happen and called it 'chemo brain' which seems pretty apt! Did anyone else get this?
I have to say he's coping remarkably well and, after a short bout of chemo induced depression last week that made him very low and tearful, he's been pretty good. I'd just like to be able to give him a steer on how long the exhaustion will last for. Any ideas or advice please?
Hi again! Nothing sounds like anything I did not get whilst on chemo...this reading took me back to the end of 2015. I could hary do anything during them bad days. Even I was not watching or doing anything on my phone. But do not worry, this should not last for long. As I said before it could be something like 7 to 10 days at the worst. After that He will start gaining back strength, taste, apetite, would not smell that bad when goes to toilet. But it won't happen suddenly. Fairly quick tho, as he won't have any other cycle of chemo. Be sure, he will be back to normal soon. After about 2 or 3 weeks I had started eating a lot, and got back to normal regime as usual. Hope these bad side effects will go away very soon!
Thanks - that's really helpful. I shall tell him to hang on in there - it sounds like he is over the worst. At least he's not being sick and is managing some food.
Sorry if my post brought back bad memories!
You've already had a good response, not sure I can add much, other than to say he should start to pick up soon. The brain fog is common and goes, his digestion will right itself, there's a good chance that in a couple of weeks he'll be returning to normal - perhaps a little foggy, perhaps tiring by the end of the day. but alot better.
My taste/smell righted itself pretty quickly, probably a couple of weeks after finishing treatment.
The tiredness (which is more like fatigue really) was more gradual - even after a month I still need a "nanna nap" in the afternoon!
The Oncologists tell me, recovery is a personal thing, so there's no specific order for side effects to disappear.
I didn't have a hair on my head for over 10-12 weeks after treatment but I know for some hair returns more quickly....
Yes. The actual taste/sell things is related to the drug and that's gone in a week or two.
Replacing what collateral damage there has been - and that's hair loss, and loss of red and white blood cells, takes longer. I developed a 'meat hunger' and demolished several Christmas roasts.
If you are vegan consider lots of iron-stuff or iron supplements.
Your oncologist will have access to some dieticians I am sure.
Thanks folks. This is all great. He's been a lot better today and is a lot more positive. Nothing much planned for the weekend so hopefully the peace and quiet will do us both good. Xx
If you have any questions about Macmillan, or would like to talk to someone about cancer, we have a team of experts who can help.
© Macmillan Cancer Support, registered charity in England and Wales (261017), Scotland (SC039907) and the Isle of Man (604). A company limited by guarantee, registered in England and Wales company number 2400969. Isle of Man company number 4694F. Registered office: 89 Albert Embankment, London SE1 7UQ.