All Topics → Forum: Radiation Therapy - Before, During and After → Topic: Radiation recovery
Posted on: Sep 3, 2011 06:15 AM, edited Sep 3, 2011 06:24 AM by Merilee
Hi I know there is another thread but I thought, since it is 60 pages old, I would start a new one for those of us just finishing radiation. My hope is that we can discuss remedies to avoid, tight skin, discuss the emotional side of being at this point of treatment, continue to support one another and keep in touch.
Posts 1681 - 1710 (5,727 total)
Apr 20, 2012 12:35 PM stephN wrote:
SAB, hopefully they will figure out what's going on. With my kiddo, it was L3 that was causing his problem, but they had to do a CT and bone scan to figure it out. So frustrating! I hope you can get some relief.
I had my thyroid checked and a bunch of other bloodwork done. As far as they can tell, the only thing really out of whack was my Vit D. It was really low, which I know can cause fatigue, but this is ridiculous!! :)
I don't skype either, Kate, but with my oldest going to college, I guess I'll have to learn!
Apr 20, 2012 04:22 PM justmejanis wrote:
Kate I know a visit to your family will do wonders. I don't live close to my sons or my only grandson. It is difficult. Sew had a great idea with the Skype. I have never used it, but you may just talk to your family and see if they do. Either way I know the visit will really cheer you up. They must miss you so much!
SAB.....sorry about all of the troubles with your back. I have had lower back troubles and neck issues for years. I do have a large herniation between the L-2 and L-3 discs. A smaller one in my neck. I am going to a spine specialist May 1st to see what to do about pain management. I have had it. Anyway sorry it is so difficult to get help.
Steph I hope this treatment does help your son. It sounds new and promising.
Fatigue...I am up and down with it. I have good days and bad days but try my best to just keep moving forward.
I have to be at the hosptial Monday morning at 8:30. I am glad I do not have to wait. I talked to my sister who is an RN. She lives in Colorado. She said she doubted I would be out in just one night. She also told me to expect to be pretty uncomfortable afterward. it is great having a sister who is a nurse and honest as well. I think...I think!!!
Apr 20, 2012 09:01 PM MostlySew wrote:
Steph, I've read on another board that several ladies were finding great relief from the bone pain by taking Claritin. Not claritin D just the plain. No one knows why it works......perhaps that can help you too. I'll hope so. Fatigue is certainly an issue, but if you could at least get the bone pain under control then you would have more energy to deal with the fatigue, constant pain is very dragging on us, both physically and mentally. Also, fingers crossed that this surgery worked for your son.
Apr 21, 2012 12:14 AM stephN wrote:
MostlySew, that is crazy, but I'll try it! I think my husband has some in the cabinet! I have been reading a ton in the last day or so about the effects of estrogen deprivation. I definitely think that the bone pain is keeping me from sleeping as well as I could, which is causing a bunch of other side effects, like the fatigue. Thanks for the tip!!
We were lucky to get in with the doc who did my son's procedure. He's incredible with a needle and we definitely wanted to avoid surgery with my young son. But if you're having pain around the spine, the ablation could be something to consider if the pain is caused by the nerve, not the muscles. They do a couple of test procedures first to be sure.
Janis, i'm so glad you aren't having to wait. I know you will be so happy to have this surgery over with!
Ladies, I really appreciate all the support here. You are all so kind and generous with your encouragement.
Apr 21, 2012 09:26 AM kingjr66 wrote:
I just did some research into the Claritin and apparently there are tons of folks who found relief using it for bone pain. I would need to dig deeper to find out why and what is in it to help with relief. I will post later when I find something. If this could help with nerve pain too....I'm for it.
Apr 21, 2012 09:39 AM justmejanis wrote:
king... do you take anything for the nerve pain? I take gabapentin. Also called Neurontin. It does help. I hope you can find some relief.
Steph....I am so sorry you are going through this. Relief from all these side effects would sure be nice. I hope the Claritin helps you. Enough is enough! Don't give up until you find something that eases your symptoms. We are here for you. I hope your son does well with his procedure!
Love and hugs my friends,
Apr 21, 2012 09:49 AM kingjr66 wrote:
janis - I'm not taking anything for the pain at the moment. I would be leery on the Neurontin since it is an anti-seizure med. I took topomax once and gave me severe tingling in my hands and feet. I'm very cautious on medications since I once worked in a drug research dept. at a veterans hospital. I know too much about altering brain chemistry/patterns with the use of drugs. In general drugs are a good thing, and I do need to take pain meds from time to time, but I prefer natural relief whenever I can. I have a high tolerance for pain and it helps the mind overcome some pretty unbearable times.
Apr 21, 2012 10:13 AM MelsMontie wrote:
I just found this thread.it will be 2 years since I had rads. I am still exhausted. I went thru chemo first, double mastectomy, blood clots, and radiation. I was overweight then, and more so now. I took tamoxifen, but now post menopausal I took femara until it crippled me up so much, she switched me to aromasin. I think it is building up and starting to be as bad as femara. I am on 40 mg. antidepressants and Xanax...... Is anybody else this exhausted this far out from the major treatment? The depression is really beginning to overwhelm me.
Apr 21, 2012 11:39 AM katehudson25 wrote:
Hi Melmontie, I am so sorry about all that you have been through. I am not experiencing what you are, but I know about depression. You need to take care of yourself. If weight is bothering you try weight watchers or read our threads. A few of us are dieting at the same time. Are you seeing a therapist? That has helped me a great deal. The support ion this thread helps me too. We are here for you. Hugs hugs and more hugs!
Apr 21, 2012 11:59 AM MelsMontie wrote:
Hey Kate, I start seeing a therapist next week. WW is so far from my house... I lived close to one 10 years ago and lost 76 pounds. I looked good. After we moved, a lot of things came up... First my husband had a chain saw accident, then as soon as he returned to work, I got my dx. Literally within days of each.... Excuses... My passion- horses, have even become a challenge, just for care, I have not ridden in a year. I was on blood thinners, and felt the risk too high, now, weight and meds, if I managed to saddle up, I would be too exhausted to attempt to ride, and there is always the untacking process. and fears.. I feel bad enough, if I got hurt, I know I would never get over it.
People don't understand. I know my husband is tired of hearing me say "tired of being tired"
Apr 21, 2012 12:30 PM katehudson25 wrote:
melsmonte I am so glad that you are going to see a therapist. That will help you a great deal. You can join weight watchers online and not have to go to meetings. I went to one meeting and then decided I did not want to pay $13 a week. What I am doing now is following their point system and so far I have lost 9 pounds. I was bad this past week because of the holidays and did not lose I stayed even. Their point system does work. I do understand depression. I had my husband desert me and then a few years later cancer. What has helped me the most is a therapist, and I think you will get great results too. Talking about your depression helps so much. Remember that we are here for you.
Apr 21, 2012 12:55 PM kingjr66 wrote:
Animals have such healing ability to others. The horse sounds like very good therapy to me. Even just a visit is worth the effort. Get to pet them and talk to them, take them for a stroll even if you can't ride. Sounds like fun and a good day out.
Apr 21, 2012 01:07 PM Elizabeth1889 wrote:
MelsMontie, Sorry you are having such a difficult time. I hope the therapist will help you. Talk to us any time. The ladies here are amazing. Glad you found us.
Apr 21, 2012 01:32 PM, edited Apr 21, 2012 03:11 PM by MelsMontie
Thanks Kate and Elizabeth. King, my horses are in the backyard, I do see them all the time. Just taking care of them is exhausting - I have 5. 3 horses, 2 ponies. I have been doing a ton of grooming, as they are shedding winter coats, I love them all, but some days, it takes all I have to go feed. I have a friends' horse here to and I am so thankful I have her and her husband. They took total care of them while I was in treatment. I would when I felt up to it... But some days, I would walk half way to the barn and have to turn around. I should have sold the younger ones when I got dx, but I could never give up the two ancient ones. They will live out their lives here, if I am here or not. My giant guy deserves so much. We were quite the team back in our day. I trusted him with my life. We fox hunted (no we did not kill the fox, just chased) and we climbed mountains. He trusted me... Nobody else had that with him. He'd be very Leary of others, and would run to me if he didn't trust them. Together, we would just laugh at others. God blessed me so much with him. He is 23 years old now. People say, if they die, they want to come back as Montie.... Best taken care of horse in the world. Ok, now I have a smile on my face. My Montana can always do that for me. Wish I could build him a stall next to my bedroom window. LoL the walk across the driveway is too far. (100 ft) my husband says my animals have it better than him.... He could be right. We had a turtle years ago, with a 50 Gallon horse water trough in my den that was fed shrimp. Maggie did have it good. Turtles CAN smile. We would put minnows in her tank, and she'd smile, minnow after minnow consumed. She ate 10 or more in one go. Yep talking about my animals puts a smile on my face. Thank you for letting me go on and on.
Apr 21, 2012 05:07 PM SAB wrote:
Melsmontie, sorry you are feeling down, but your description of your animals made me smile! My daughter has been a part of a no-ride rescue barn for a couple of years, and it is amazing what being near the horses does for her.
I just want to say that you should honor the fact that your body and spirit have been through so much. We have been assaulted, and it takes time to recover. I hope your therapist helps you find your way!
I think (correct me if I'm wrong girls) that most of us are newer to recovery than you. You're obviously welcome on this thread, and the ladies are super, but there are older recovery threads that may answer the questions you asked about being 2 years out.
Apr 21, 2012 08:30 PM kingjr66 wrote:
melsmontie - see what a beautiful thing an animal can do for you, even if it just a smile letting someone else know how happy your animals make you. and yes, it made me smile too. thanks for sharing and glad I helped to make you feel a little better.
Apr 21, 2012 08:53 PM MostlySew wrote:
Glad you've found us. As you can see we're all here to help. Sab is right, I think, most of us are probably 6 months to 1 year out, but we're happy to have you. Believe it or not, I've found that a little bit of exercise helps. I stress "a little bit". Can you get one of those canes that have a fold out seat, so you could rest on the way to the horse barn? That is a long walk on some days, and that might help. Kate's right too about Weight watchers on-line. They have a reduced rate for a 3 month sign up which I did, and just tracking my food honestly daily has helped me be more healthy in my food choices, which is my way of saying "diet".....cause I think what we all want is to be healthy. Even a little change in your eating patterns may help you feel better about life in general and could help with the depression. Don't expect overnight miracles though..it took us years to put this weight on, and will probably take just about as long to get it off...but we'll feel better doing it. Oops, guess I'll get off my soap box now.
Steph, let us know if the Claritin works....I sure hope it does!
Kate, glad to hear you've held your own over the Holiday. I think I might have lost the two pounds I gained....if only I can get thru Sunday lunch with a friend I should be good for my Monday weigh in.
Apr 21, 2012 10:09 PM justmejanis wrote:
Welcome MelsMonte! I think depression goes hand in hand with cancer, treatments, tests, countless doctor appointments, financial stress, medications. If you look at it that way there is so much we have had to deal with since diagnosis. First, as far as weight, do not beat yourself up! The last thing you need to do right now is punish yourself. We truly have to take each day as it comes. I try every day to do something different, productive, just a little more than the day before. Batting fatigue can be an issue but try hard to go hug that horse every day. It sounds like good medicine to me. Of course feel free to come here and talk anytime you need to. We have all been there.
I was really busy today. Got some weeding done, washed all my bedding and hung it all out to dry. It was hot here today and hotter tomorrow. I guess I want to get things done before I am off my feet for awhile. We planted a lot of little seedlings that we have been cultivating inside for months now. Mostly annuals today, tomorrow I think we will plant our perrneials and maybe all the herbs. We have a lot that we want to keep in pots outside this summer.
My neck and back are sore tonight but it was a good productive day at least.
Apr 21, 2012 10:52 PM Joan811 wrote:
Hi, am catching up on your posts since Wednesday when I last logged in.
I think we all see a little bit of ourselves in every post.
StephN, I just came from the Femara thread and it seems everybody's tired and has fuzzy brain. I don't get much sleep; and I have been dozing off while others are talking....and I have been craving carbs which is not helping.
SAB, Two days ago I developed an upper back pain on the right (non BC) side and it seems to be by my ribs. I can't tell if it is in the muscle or near the skin. I just want it to go away. If I take OTC pain meds, I am fine. But it comes back. Then tonight I leaned over and my lower back/hip kind of locked. It is still testy, and the other side has twinges too. Can this all be Femara? The upper back pain really kind of scares me. How long do I wait to get it checked? Do I have to go to PC doc or back to the cancer center? I was so sure it was indigestion because I ate cookies.
Welcome Melsmonte, It is not surprising that you are tired. I take wellbutrin which usually makes me feel energetic. But with the Femara, I think the femara is winning as I am more tired most of the time. Sometimes I doze off then when I try to go to bed I lie awake a long time.
I know we are fortunate to be treatable, but it is a big adjustment dealing with these drugs and fears.
Janis, I just don't know what to say.....so sorry you have to go through more surgery. Don't forget your pocket pals are here. We'll try to behave.
Best wishes to all,
PS - Kate, it will be great for you to get away to your family. I have plans in May right after my classes end to visit my son in CA. It keeps me going when I feel so tired or down.
Apr 21, 2012 11:19 PM SAB wrote:
Janis you make me feel a little lazy! I have so much to do in the house but I went walking at the coast this morning, and napped this afternoon . So bad. It's great you got so much done! I love the smell of sheets dried in the sun.
Joan I don't know what to tell you. I had pesky pains before bc, and new pains after. I read somewhere on these boards that the rule is 2 weeks with no improvement warrants a Dr. Anyone else hear that? Of course, if that were the case with me I would be at the doctor every 2 weeks!!! I don't know too much about Femara, but my Tamoxifen definitely ratcheted up the aches. My MO reminds me that natural menopause causes aches and pains as well, and that it is a common side effect.
Kate, fun to plan a trip! How long has it been since you've seen everyone?
Steph, did you start vitamin D?
Apr 21, 2012 11:58 PM Joan811 wrote:
SAB, 2 weeks sounds reasonable for manageable pain. Thanks....I still hope it goes away. Glad you got out for a walk...that's probably the best thing you did today :-)
Speaking of Vitamin D, I am taking the big dose (50,000 units) and my MO never told me to take calcium.....guess I should call her or fire her.
Apr 22, 2012 12:51 AM stephN wrote:
Joan, my onc told me the same thing as SABs. Everyone gets aches and pains, she said, but if you have something extreme, like you would go to the ER anyway, go to the ER. If you have something that lingers past two weeks, call and get it checked out.
I've taken two weeks of Vitamin D. I'm taking the big dose and I wasn't told to take calcium, either.
Janis, you are amazing! I cleaned the kitchen today and made zucchini muffins. Went to the grocery store...that's about it!
MelsMonte, I think that cancer treatment causes some changes that are permanent. For me, it obviously has. I am not in menopause and I wouldn't have been for ten years probably. And as we've been talking about, the drugs cause side effects, too. I do think there are ways to mitigate the symptoms, but I think that's probably going to be different for everyone. Our bodies are so unique, with our own chemistry. I hope you find some encouragement! Two years is a long time to feel bad!
Hugs to all of you...and Janis, if I don't get here tomorrow, I'll be in your pocket on Monday, for sure!
Apr 22, 2012 08:59 AM justmejanis wrote:
Steph...thanks for being there tomorrow. I have to admit as the time gets closer I am getting more nervous. I know that is normal. I wish I knew for sure how long I would be there. I have no idea. overnight for sure but possibly longer. One day at a time, I know. Now everyone is welcome in my packet tomorrow. We shall have a calorie free party. Nothing we eat counts. So bring some good stuff!
Joan glad you will be able to see your son soon. I have not seen either of mine in two years so it is difficult I know. I hope you can start sleeping better. These meds can have some wicked SE's...still better than BC though!
SAB....a walk along the coast sounds wonderful and would naturally make you tired! A nap was indeed just what you needed. I was born in SF and lived there until I was eight. I love the northern coast...it is amazing, stunning. We spent many years traveling back and forth to visit relatives and woukld often go to Monterey and Carmel. Nothing is more beautiful. To this day I can taste the sourdough bread my mom used to always buy. I have not tasted any better in my life!
Have a wonderful day my friends. Do something that makes you happy!
Apr 22, 2012 02:28 PM, edited Apr 22, 2012 02:28 PM by justmejanis
SAB.....Hey that is perfect! Many thanks!
Apr 22, 2012 03:40 PM MelsMontie wrote:
Thanks everybody! I got up -fed horses, stopped for horse meds, went to Walmart, and was in tears on the way home. Tired, and pain. Husband unloaded and it was all I could do to get in the house. I have so much to get done by 10 AM in the morning. I have a church function tonight. siiiiiiigh.. I bought some claritin , but husband cant find it in the bags. mid back down hurts all the ways to the toes. Thank you Lord that I have this ipad.... I can sit here while he watches NASCAR, I can hear it, yet still play on the internet. He's funny, they said something about Montoya, and husband said something about Montoya hitting the jet dryer. (for non-NASCAR fans) We were at Daytona when Montoya's car slid up the track and exploded the jet dryer on the track. anyway. this isn't a NASCAR board....
SAB could you ship some of that sourdough down south in Mississippi? what exactly is a pocket party?
Joan, I am on a nightly dose of xanex for sleep, and will sometimes take some melatonin to help me sleep. They let me be off the femara for over a month, and I was shocked how much better I felt - but then she put me on the aromasin, that... well.... is building back up in my system....
I did take my horse Ziggy for a walk last night. I brushed him... brushed his long mane, took him down the drive and street to see if he was paying attention. He did pretty good. I haven't handled him much, so before even thinking of getting on his back... I need to be sure we have understanding in hand. He remembered pretty well, to stop when I stop. Still trying to get at the grass.... grass out of your pasture is soooooo much b etter than in your pasture. I need to take my old guy near the pond. He in particular likes the light green grass on the edge of the pond. funny how they are all different. My appaloosa likes short round leaf grass. My ponies are so starved - anything is fantastic to them. With most of them, I know when I see their favorite grass, they will stick their nose down. Ziggy likes thick long burmuda grass.... everything ya'll wanted to know. Maybe I can walk him a few more times, then add the saddle - and work him, before I get on him. He needs his toes trimmed before anything else. His feet are in need of his farrier. Hoof is splitting and breaking off. ok... I'll shut up now. Ya'll have a nice blessed Sunday.
Apr 22, 2012 06:20 PM kingjr66 wrote:
melsmontie - I can tell you light up when you talk of your horses. They will be your strength. I liked reading about your walk. I did not know that horses had different tastes, and I'm sure different personalities.