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Starting Chemo in Nov. 2011...anyone else?

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dtholden
dtholden Member Posts: 23

I will begin my first chemotherapy the last week of October and will continue for approx. 7 months.  I will have 4 cycles of AC every two weeks and then 4 cycles of Taxol every two weeks.  I have Triple Negative Breast Cancer so I have been prescribed an agressive dense dose of therapy.   Anticipating all of the   "fun" associated with chemotherapy....I am strong and able to get through this journey!

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  • claireinaz
    claireinaz Member Posts: 682
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    Denise, I'm tentatively ready to start Nov. 4.  I'm getting dose-dense therapy every other week for 5 months.  I asked what I was getting from my onc's assistant and (I was on the phone, not able to write it down) he gave me the actual name of the drug, not the common name. All I could remember were the first letters--I think A, C, P...but not sure. I still don't know what I'm getting and on second thought, don't want to know--will take it as it comes.

     Driving down to Phx Monday to check out some wigs.  It seems I'll need one, even if I never wear it. Like a security blanket.

    Let's go through this together.  Hugs--

    Claire (ILC, stage II grade 1, 2 c. ER/PR+.

  • GrandmaV
    GrandmaV Member Posts: 1,045
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    Hi Denise and Claire,

    I may be starting Chemo. in November.  I had my surgery Oct. 11, lumpectomy, snb, port placement.  My post op was Wed. Oct. 19 and I meet with Onc. Oct. 26.  I know I will get chemo soon plus herceptin for a year, also radiation for 5 weeks and an aromatase inhibitor for 5 years.  I don't know what chemo combination yet.  It seems like a long road ahead.  I've been looking at wigs on line, but haven't yet went to a store.  I found a halo wig I like and will probably get to wear with scarves and hats.  I would like very much to join you to help each other along.

    Thanks

  • exbrnxgrl
    exbrnxgrl Member Posts: 4,961
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    Slated to start chemo on 11/1. Got a wig and a halo. Had port implanted last week. Very scared of SE's but will just plow ahead and hope for the best.

    Caryn

  • moderators
    moderators Posts: 8,219
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    Hi all,

    Some good info for you on the main Breastcancer.org site in the Chemotherapy section on Chemotherapy: What to Expect.

    Hope you find this helpful!

    --The Mods

  • el-jaye
    el-jaye Member Posts: 25
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    I am starting Chemo Oct 28.  I go to chemo school on Monday,  YIKES  this all seems to be happening pretty fast!  I will be have 4 cycles, once every three weeks.  The drug is BRAJDC. 

    I was not prepared to hear that my hair will fall out after the first cycle.  I guess I better get out there and buy a scarf or turban or something.  Not really interested in wearing a wig.  

    No port implanted, they are going to try to avoid the port altogether. If they are not able to find a good vein they will try a pic line instead.

    Wishing you all the very best as we all walk this road, praying for an easy time with not too many side effects!

    LJ

  • GrandmaV
    GrandmaV Member Posts: 1,045
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    Caryn, LJ, thank you for joining us.  I just thought I'd mention that I've been following the october chemo group for a couple of weeks and one of them posted these two lists that I've found very helpful.  I thought I'd pass them on to you:

    http://community.breastcancer.org/forum/69/topic/478386?page=26#idx_775 

    http://community.breastcancer.org/forum/69/topic/706846?page=23#idx_671

    They have tips on how to prepare for chemo and what to buy and take with you to treatment.

    I hope this helps you as much as it has me.

  • el-jaye
    el-jaye Member Posts: 25
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    GrandmaV - thank you very much!  I have been making a list of questions to take to Chemo School and now have many of the answers already!

  • Terry71
    Terry71 Member Posts: 108
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    Hello ladies, I dont really know much as I am kinda new also but I will tell you this.... Always Smile, stay Positive and dont anticipate any SE'S just keep thinking I can do this, I have this BEAT, I will come out a Survivor, always SHINE!!!!!!!!!! we are ALL warriors and Champs xo

  • sueshane
    sueshane Member Posts: 68
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    I will begin TC on November 2-  looking forward to getting the unknown over- anxious...

  • GrandmaV
    GrandmaV Member Posts: 1,045
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    LJ, you're very welcome, glad those October ladies shared that info.

    Terry71, it's good to hear from you.   I think you'll be very helpful to us.  I was lurking about on the October thread and I think I remember you've already had about 4 treatments so far.  I'm sure you have a lot of helpful info.  How are you feeling?

  • GrandmaV
    GrandmaV Member Posts: 1,045
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    sueshane, welcome.  I think we're all anxious.  The unknown is very scary.   But we can take comfort in knowing we're not doing this alone.  We have each other.

  • el-jaye
    el-jaye Member Posts: 25
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    Sueshane - I am anxious as well.  Scared a bit, but mostly I think I am wanting to get this part of my treatment started.  The sooner I start, the sooner I can be finished with it and get back to "normal". I am thankful to have found this group to talk to. 

  • dtholden
    dtholden Member Posts: 23
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    Hello Everyone,

    I will have my actual first chemo treatment on this Wednesday, Oct. 26th. then I will have my port put in place the next day.  I am definitely anxious about my first treatment because of the unknown factors and what SE's I may encounter. 

    I am happy to see others are beginning their treatments during the same timeframe as myself....it will be great to have others that I can share my experiences...good or bad with during this process.  I pray that everyone's chemo journey is successful and tolerable with very little side effects. 

    Stay blessed my fellow warriors!

                     

  • dtholden
    dtholden Member Posts: 23
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    I have been wearing wigs for several years because of my Aloepecia which has made my hair thinner than I llike,so it wasn't very hard for me to deal with the thought of losing my hair.   I decided to go ahead and shave my head before my treatments so I wouldn't have to   see any evidence of the hair loss from chemo.   I have decided to not wear my wigs and go bald during this journey as my way to pay tribute to all of the  bc warriors and survivors.

    Best wishes to all....we will all make it through this!!!

  • claireinaz
    claireinaz Member Posts: 682
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    Finding space for me for a surgery in our small hospital has been a challenge. I think I have to have the port in before I can start chemo, and finding a place to have that done has been difficult.  I stil lhope to start 11/4. 

     I'm fearful of gaining weight on chemo. Any tips from the survivors? I thought you mostly lost weight, and I sure don't want to gain it--I don't need it, and want to stay active as best I can.   Nearly every thing I read said you gain weight on it. True or not?

    Good luck to everyone.  Stay strong and don't feel bad when you don't feel strong.  

  • GrandmaV
    GrandmaV Member Posts: 1,045
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    Claire,

    From what I've heard and read it's actually all the steriods they give you along with chemo to help fight side effects that causes the weight gain.  Many of the women have recommended exercise, at least walking everyday to combat this.  Not everyone gains weight, but some do.  I probably will, because it's so easy for me to gain anyway.   So I'm going to try to keep up my walking routine as much as I can. 

  • GrandmaV
    GrandmaV Member Posts: 1,045
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    Denise,

    You will be starting your chemo the day I meet with my onc. to discuss chemo.  I will be thinking of you and hoping all goes well for you.

  • GrandmaV
    GrandmaV Member Posts: 1,045
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    By the way Denise, you look beautiful with the bald look. 

  • 1WonderWoman
    1WonderWoman Member Posts: 1,796
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    Hello girls!!   I started the Aug 2010 thread and I promise you, the support you all get here is going to prove priceless as you move through this process.  Chemo is challenging but necessary.  I wish you all the best and remember, the day of chemo and the day after are not too bad but for most, days 3-7 prove to be pretty challenging.  Also, your hair comes back and you will eventually feel better than ever!   Remember, also, we are all so lucky to live in this country and to have treatment readily available to us.   We are very, very fortunate in that respect.  

    It is all good, girls!  Go forth, get passed chemo and prosper!  If any of you need anything, have questions etc... you can PM me or stop by our thread and get the answers and/or support you need. 

    Best of luck to you all-

  • Allagashmaggie
    Allagashmaggie Member Posts: 66
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    I will be starting chemo tomorrow, October 24th.  Decision made after my onco-type test came back in the "unsure" category.  Stage 1, Clear Lymph Nodes, clear margins, 95% ER+, PR+ and HER negative.  However, Grade 3 tumor.  Had lumpectomy on September 2nd, followup on Sept. 15th, met with oncologist October 3rd and got the results of the onco-type test on Oct. 20th.  It is time to get this show on the road though I am very sad it boiled down to chemo after thinking it would be radiation and hormone treatment only.  I am 58 years old and have had long hair all my adult life.  I would be lying if I said losing my hair will not bother me but I am staying focussed on the end result.   This too shall pass.  Good luck to all.

  • Nel
    Nel Member Posts: 597
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    Hi all,

    I will be starting chemo probably the first week in November, I will know more by Thursday. I have 12 weeks,of chemo and  this is bad i  forget the mix, but hepracin will be included)  I am so anxious to get strarted and get this over with..  Then surgery.  So like all of you road head.  I am grateful fro the surrpot and the Novembe group.

    Be well

    Nel

  • Kathy9433
    Kathy9433 Member Posts: 23
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    Hey! - As a matter of fact, I am starting my chemo tomorrow and 9 AM!  My dx sounds REALLY similar to yours, too.  (triple negative) 4 cycles of A & C every three weeks and then 4 cycles of T every three weeks.  Then radiation for 5 weeks.  Would LOVE to stay in touch with you after we start to "compare notes" :O)   I'm staying POSITIVE and look at it this way--one down; only seven more to go!  Good Luck to you and OXOXOX

    Kathy

  • GrandmaV
    GrandmaV Member Posts: 1,045
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    Allagashmaggie,

    Thank you for joining us.  Our diagnosis are very similar, except I'm Pr- and Her2+.  I'm 57 and had long hair, until just before my surgery.  I cut it into a bob just above shoulder length to get used to it being shorter.  I plan on going a little more short when I start chemo and then shave it when it starts to fall out.  I've always had good hair and have loved the way it started going gray.  I have dark brown hair and my gray is a bright silver in streaks that I have really enjoyed.  I'm going to miss it and am in the process of trying to find a wig that is very similar to my own hair.  So far not too much success.  So I understand very much how you feel.  I think I will look terrible hairless, I have such a funny looking big head.  But it will be worth it to do everything I can possibly do to beat cancer and be here to enjoy my grandkids. 

  • GrandmaV
    GrandmaV Member Posts: 1,045
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    Nel and Kathy,

    Welcome and thank you for joining us too.  It will be a so nice to have so much encouragement and support in the coming months ahead.

  • 3girls
    3girls Member Posts: 18
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    Hi!  I am hoping to start chemo in November.  had lumpectomy and then re-exicision waiting to hear if I have clean margins.  Anxious to get started and get it over with!  Will be looking for wigs this week!

  • dtholden
    dtholden Member Posts: 23
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    Welcome to all the newcomers,

    I thank you for your presence and the inspiration we can share with each other.  We jointly will go through this journey with strength, hope..some days of uncertainity but we will all rebound quickly with courage and faith to continue! 

    I am mentally preparing for my first chemo treatment on Weds.  Going today for my EKG.   I am all prayed up and ready :-)

  • dtholden
    dtholden Member Posts: 23
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    3girls,

    There are so many wonderful wigs on the market now that look very natural.   I have been wearing wigs for years daily....very rarely show my real hair because I love the look that wigs give me and the style options.   Find a wig that allows your personality to shine through and have fun with the options the wigs will give you until your hair grows back.

    I have decided to stay bald the entire time because of the uniqueness and character it give me.....I call it "Bald, Bold, Brave and Beautiful".   We are not defined by our hair but we do love it :-)

    Continued blessings to you!

  • dtholden
    dtholden Member Posts: 23
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    Thanks GrandmaV for your words of encouragement!   You are in my prayers and thoughts as well.   We will get through this journey...challenged, a bit worn but victorious and cancer free in the end.

  • dtholden
    dtholden Member Posts: 23
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    Hi Kathy....goodluck with your first chemo treatment this morning...yes our treatment regiment is very similar.   I have you in my prayers all day and know that you will have a successful first day which is hard because of the uncertainty.  We both have the Triple Negative sub type which has its own unique challenges so we will have to give each other special support during our journey.  We will take it one day....one chemo treatment at  a time :-) 

    Blessing to ya!

  • dtholden
    dtholden Member Posts: 23
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    Allagashmaggie,

    Best wishes and prayers to you on your first day of chemo....you will be fine and have the strength to make it through each and every treatment over the next several weeks.  Losing our hair...our crown of glory is very difficult but it doesnt define us.  Your baldness will show people your strength....help them to see your true outer beauty and enhance your inner beauty!

    You are in my prayers my fellow warrior.