Writings of a teachermom, choosing to stay home with her kids, while loathing all domestic responsibilities! In late Aug. 2008, I was diagnosed with Triple Negative breast cancer. After surgery, chemo and radiation, I was given theall clear. However, in the late summer of 2008, I was diagnosed with a brain tumor, which metasticized to other areas.

Sunday, December 02, 2007

New Stuff

Monday I start a new round of chemo called Taxol. Like my AC, I’ll have 4 doses, one every other week. Then I’ll be done with chemo….YEAH!

In order to prepare for this new poison, I have to take steroids..5 pills 12 hours before my treatment and 5 pills 7 hours before my treatment. I looked at the pharmacist and said, “Are you kidding me? If I take five pills of anything I’ll feel like I’m overdosing.” She laughed and assured me it was okay. I wanted to ask her with all these steroids was I going to grow a beard or something…then I stopped myself…no hair growth happening around here, with or without steroids. When I asked about side effects, the nurse just told me I’d have trouble sleeping, but I wonder though if I’ll start looking like the young Arnold Schwarznegger.

With this new drug, I’m a little nervous again of how my body will react. Most people say that it’s a lot better than the AC chemo. I’ve been told that I may have some tingling of my fingers and toes. But not much else has been said to me about side effects. No one told me about the depression side of AC, and I kinda wish I was more prepared with that. So I decided to go ahead and look on a bulletin board of the website Young Survival Coalition, a site for younger women dealing with breast cancer.

Although many people said it was an easier drug to deal with:

"I'm not sure how many weeks of Taxol you're doing. I did 12 weeks of a smaller dose and found it very tolerable. Just a little achy, but none of the nausea and such like the AC. The worst side effect had to be losing my eyebrows and eyelashes. Definitely gives you an alien appearance. But, they do grow back just like everything else. Best of luck to you!"

Some of the comments said otherwise:

"I would have traded A/C for my Taxol and I had a hard time with A/C.1) Nails turned black and peeled back from beds (just now growing out)2) Excrutiating bone pain from the Neulasta+Taxol combo (hips to tip of toes- days I could not walk)3) White blood cells plummeted4) Acne5) Extreme Dry skin6) Extreme fatigue7) Bruised if you sneezed at me8) Numb toes 9) ABSOLUTELY no change in the size of my tumor from this treatment!There were weeks when I would go through 30 percocet and it barely touched the pain. My husband and I both questioned if it was doing anything...the article on Taxol's effectiveness came out 3 weeks after my last dose...hmmmmI pray that you have an easier time! I would not have wished this on my worst enemy or my ex-husband!"

Obviously after reading a couple responses like that, I am quite nervous.

So to all you prayer warriors, feel free to add me to your list this week.


At 6:08 AM, Blogger Fantastic Four said...

I hope all goes well and I hope you slept last night! As always, we will be thinking of you!

At 9:34 AM, Blogger Ann said...

Thinking of you this morning - hope it goes well.

Can you at least drink coffee with this stuff?

At 11:22 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Cari:

I had a question. Does the chemo cause you to lose weight? Because most steroids (Mama was on Pretnesone for years) cause you to gain weight.
You are always in my prayers, and I trust in God that things will go just as well, or better, with you this time around as they did last time around.

Love you much,
Auntie Nita

At 7:44 PM, Blogger Undomestic said...

ff-- I took an ativan and slept very well last night. So that was good. Thanks for thinking of me.

Ann -- I wish I did have coffee with me, because they gave me Benedryl, straight into the veins. I was very sleepy...but I can't sleep with all those people around! Thanks for thinking of me.

Auntie Nita -- No, unfortunately chemo doesn't make me lose weight. Many people gain weight because 1. they can't be as active and 2. they sometimes eat more during chemo. So far my weight has remained steady. I don't know what the steroids will do. I don't have to take them consistently, and no one said anything about weight gain. That would totally suck. But oh well, I gotta just do what I gotta do. Thanks for the prayers!

At 9:20 PM, Blogger Andrea said...

Praying you have minimal side effects from this round.

At 2:27 PM, Blogger Caro said...

You are added. In fact, you are on top.


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