Topic: Starting Chemo December 2021

Forum: Chemotherapy - Before, During, and After — Regimens, side effects, and support from others going through chemo.

Posted on: Nov 25, 2021 02:10PM

Posted on: Nov 25, 2021 02:10PM

mugsy wrote:

'Tis the Season!

I'm starting TC (Taxotere/Cytoxan) on December 1. I thought I'd start a thread for any other chemo-goers getting started or continuing in the month of December.

I was diagnosed with IDC in mid-September during a routine mammogram. I had a lumpectomy in mid-October. Being called "Stage 1a" in my cancer journey seems so deceptive, as my tumor was Grade 3, Luminal B, high Ki-67 score; all which led to oncotype score of 29 and indicated chemotherapy.

I had a port placed yesterday. I've ordered a DigniCap system to help with hair loss. My oncologist said they've had about 50% success rate with the DigniCap system. I asked if he meant it worked on 50% of the patients who tried it, or those who tried lost only 50% of their hair. "Yes," he replied with a grin. I'll give it a try. Anyone else trying this or any other cold capping method?

Wishing you total success on your chemo journey and few or no side effects!

Radiation Therapy 3/1/2022 Right breast
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Dec 13, 2021 05:02PM kayce234 wrote:

Hi all. Joining the group with a Dec 21st start for t/c . Its my hubbies bday and he gets to spend it watching me get chemo! Got my port today-i have horrible veins. So far its very uncomfortable but aupposed to be better in 48hrs so fingers crossed. Thus us my 2nd rodeo. Had IDC first time around with radiation, oncologist was only 16so no chemo, did tamoxifen then the post menopause drugs....didn't lije any of them. Have Triple negative this time around with no link to first cancer. Had mastectomy with Diep reconstruction on 10/21.

Anyone else get a porr?

SMX w/SNB 12/08/11 Rad started 01/10/12 Dx 11/10/2011, IDC, 3cm, Stage II, Grade 1, 0/3 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 12/7/2011 Lumpectomy; Lumpectomy (Left); Lymph node removal; Lymph node removal (Left): Sentinel Radiation Therapy 1/17/2012 Hormonal Therapy 3/16/2012
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Dec 15, 2021 06:47AM jspringer4 wrote:

Kayce - my port was awful for a good two weeks but after the swelling went down and my body finally accepted it was here to stay, the pain went away. Mine is in my arm and it helped to put a small pillow under my elbow so there wasn’t any pressure on the port site.

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Dec 15, 2021 10:07AM ajbclan wrote:

Hi Ladies-

I wanted to jump in and give you all support and encouragement, as I remember it helped me during this time. 5 years ago, I was awaiting my last chemo treatment. I remember seeing women 5 plus years out and it felt like a lifetime that would take forever to reach. Here I am, doing "well"- in quotes as you all know there's so much "unknown". While I have no evidence of disease, that idea will always lurk in my mind. The good news is I was recently asked what type of cancer I had, and I couldn't remember right away, lol.

This time period sucks- no way around it. One day at a time and lean on each other. There are still about 5 from my "chemo group" that try and stay connected periodically through the board.

Wishing you all well, minimal side effects, and one day posting on a board 5 years out encouraging others (or maybe it just won't exist any longer- wouldn't that be fabulous).

Dx 8/9/16 with "multiple masses", chemo from 8/24/16 to 12/14/16- PCR. BMX w/TE: 1/31/2017; Exchange-9/18/17. Dealt with blood clot, cellulitis and another infection. Variance on PALB2 gene. Dx 8/9/2016, IDC, Right, 4cm, Stage IIA, Grade 3, 0/2 nodes, ER-/PR+, HER2- Chemotherapy 8/23/2016 Carboplatin (Paraplatin), Taxotere (docetaxel) Surgery 1/30/2017 Mastectomy; Mastectomy (Right); Prophylactic mastectomy; Prophylactic mastectomy (Left); Reconstruction (Left): Tissue Expander; Reconstruction (Right): Tissue Expander Hormonal Therapy 12/18/2018 Arimidex (anastrozole), Femara (letrozole)
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Dec 16, 2021 05:18PM kayce234 wrote:

jspringer. Thank you. My pain is gone but its so uncomfortable and tight. I have read it can take 10-14 days to settle down so happy to hear yours did. Mine is in my chest and thru my jugular.

SMX w/SNB 12/08/11 Rad started 01/10/12 Dx 11/10/2011, IDC, 3cm, Stage II, Grade 1, 0/3 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 12/7/2011 Lumpectomy; Lumpectomy (Left); Lymph node removal; Lymph node removal (Left): Sentinel Radiation Therapy 1/17/2012 Hormonal Therapy 3/16/2012
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Dec 19, 2021 03:28PM kayce234 wrote:

Hi all

Port is feeling so much better and starting my first TC dose Tuesday. Feeling nervous, been trying to rest and relax this weekend, cleaned my office as I'm healed enough from the DEIP Flap reconstruction to go back to my desk from the recliner I've been working from. Other than that just getting Christmas decorations up and basically resting, resting and hydrating. Kind of nervous for first dose, so close to Christmas I'm afraid I will be miserable for Christmas Eve and Day.

SMX w/SNB 12/08/11 Rad started 01/10/12 Dx 11/10/2011, IDC, 3cm, Stage II, Grade 1, 0/3 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 12/7/2011 Lumpectomy; Lumpectomy (Left); Lymph node removal; Lymph node removal (Left): Sentinel Radiation Therapy 1/17/2012 Hormonal Therapy 3/16/2012
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Dec 20, 2021 12:21PM Morgana00 wrote:

hi everyone! I thought I'd pop in for a mid cycle update. Around day 9 I started feeling mostly normal. There is some lingering fatigue and some days I'm more tired than others. Taking a daily walk and light exercise/yoga definitely helps with the fatigue. Yesterday, day 12, is when I noticed my hair starting to fall out, not in clumps but just a lot more shedding than normal. Even though I expected it, it was still a bit of a shock. I guess I'll cut it short tonight to ease the transition. My husband is far too excited to bring out his clippers- I actually caught him watching YouTube videos on how to do different short cuts, lol!

Kayce- It took about a week and a half for my port to feel somewhat comfortable and now I don't even notice it. It is in my chest on the left side. I regularly sleep on that side and even once woke up on my stomach. Good luck on your first infusion tomorrow. I got my first infusion on a Tuesday and Friday was rough in the morning but got better in the afternoon and Saturday was tolerable, so I hope Christmas will be okay for you. Hydrate, Hydrate, Hydrate!

Mugsy- I think you're due for round two tomorrow as well, good luck!

abjclan- thank you for popping in and the encouraging words. It is truly appreciated to hear from those who have gone through this.


I hope everyone has a wonderful holiday despite the circumstances we find ourselves in. take care!

Dx 8/25/2021, IDC, Right, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 3, 0/2 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-, Surgery 9/23/2021 Lumpectomy: Right; Lymph node removal: Sentinel Chemotherapy 12/5/2021 Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide), Taxotere (docetaxel) Radiation Therapy Breast Hormonal Therapy Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone)
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Dec 21, 2021 02:04PM - edited Dec 21, 2021 02:07PM by kayce234

1 down 3 to go. Today went as well as I could have expected. Went in prepared with my wonder woman socks, faith bracelet, earrings and heart necklace - all special gifts. Chronicling each visit to see the changes. Whole day felt like spa treatment. Had leather heated recliner, accupuncture in my ears and a lunch cart came around. 1 bag of saline and 2 bags of chemo. Whole day took form 7:30 - 3pm after bloodwork, dr appt and chemo. Zero effects so far, nothing while getting infusions and feel good now. Enjoy the moments while I can but prepared for the floor to fall out in a day or two. Planning on cutting my hair tomorrow as many has said its best to have it shorter as it will cause fewer issues when it starts to fall out. Going to try and do it myself since I cut my family's hair - and figure if it's bad oh well, it's falling out any way :)

SMX w/SNB 12/08/11 Rad started 01/10/12 Dx 11/10/2011, IDC, 3cm, Stage II, Grade 1, 0/3 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 12/7/2011 Lumpectomy; Lumpectomy (Left); Lymph node removal; Lymph node removal (Left): Sentinel Radiation Therapy 1/17/2012 Hormonal Therapy 3/16/2012
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Dec 21, 2021 06:15PM blinx wrote:

Hi there -- Just got my treatment start date of Tues, Dec 28. My MO initially thought I was triple negative, but finally received the HER2 results of the biopsy today -- positive. I'll meet with her in 2 days to discuss how this completely changes my planned treatment. My biopsy was on Nov 18, so no idea why this bit of info took SO long when the ER/PR results were in many weeks ago, but here we are.

Had my power port inserted today. Wow, the process was nothing like I expected! Took 4.5 hours with all the waiting before and after. Silly me, I was thinking it was done in a surgeon's office (like a biopsy), but it was in the hospital's cath lab. I had the twilight drugs but don't think I felt the effects of them. Feels very weird now with this pulling sensation up my neck. Worst part of the procedure was when they taped my "bad" breast down to keep it out of the way. The skin on that side is always very sensitive and removing the tape was a bit painful. Glad that's all out of the way.

Dx July 2007 DCIS Grade 3 (at age 46); Lumpectomy Sept 2007. ER+/PR-; Finished 33 rad tx Jan 2008. 3.5 years of Tamoxifen then quit.. Chemotherapy 3/1/2022 Other Dx DCIS, Right, <1, Stage 0, ER+ Dx IDC, Both breasts, 6cm+, Stage IIIC, Grade 3, ER-/PR-, HER2+, ISH
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Dec 23, 2021 03:45PM - edited Dec 23, 2021 03:46PM by mugsy

Hi!

I had chemo 2 of 4 yesterday. I had another "reaction" to the Taxotere, so we switched to Taxol. We will keep the "C" in the TC chemo, just switching up the T since the taxotere didn't like me. Everything else went well, with the cold cap and the day overall. Hair seems to be hanging in there, have some shedding but I usually do normally. (I'm 51 and perimenopausal, take thyroid, etc., so hair has been thinning over the last few years a bit). The cap didn't feel as cold this time, not sure if that means anything. Also, the nurse said I wouldn't likely see hair fall out (eyebrows, lashes, etc.) until next round. So we'll see how head hair is between rounds 3 and 4. When I have the icky feeling on days 2-6 or so, I do think, "who cares about my hair?" And washing it is a true anxiety-fest. But am hanging in there with it.

Morgana - thanks for remembering I was starting round 2! Did your bone pain get better? I agree with you about walking and moving, it helps (dogs help too). Tylenol helped me and I was up in the middle of the night to take it. Also agree about cheese tasting wonderful, and I'm loving sweets. I'm not losing weight. If I lose a little bit the first week, I'm deffo gaining it back in weeks 2-3. I'm glad your hubby is ready with the clippers when the time comes!

Kayce - so happy to hear your first infusion went so well! Love the Wonder Woman socks and special jewelry. Glad the port is treating you better now. I truly hope you will feel well enough to enjoy Christmas!

Blinx - It took me a couple of weeks to adjust to the port. The pulling sensation went away and I stopped "noticing" it and feeling it. It's an adjustment, for sure. It's probably horrible for me to admit that it was worse than my lumpectomy/node removal?! Not sure why, just the nerves on my neck/chest and recovery for me (and even scar) was more with the port. It happens! But now I'm glad to have it. Did you have a FISH test for the HER? The waiting and anticipating is the hardest part, I think. Wishing you a great start on Dec. 28.

ajbclan - Thank you for the support! How nice to share your perspective from your vantage point now. I love the idea that you had a hard time recalling your exact cancer. Hope that happens for all of us...that this terrific challenge will one day be a most distant memory. Thank you for the much needed hope!

Wishing everyone a warm & wonderful Christmas and best wishes for the coming new year.

Radiation Therapy 3/1/2022 Right breast
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Dec 23, 2021 07:19PM blinx wrote:

Hi Mugsy -- Finally got the FISH on the HER2 for the 3rd biopsy site and it threw a wrench into the whole chemo plan! Have to go back and get authorization from insurance for a different regimen, and it's delayed my start a day, until Wed. Dec. 29. Result: Right breast and left axillary are TNBC; right axillary is ER-/PR-/HER2+. So as near as I can figure out, I'll be getting AC every 2 weeks for 8 weeks. Then taxotere and ____? once a week for 12 weeks (but this might not be correct). Hoping when I start that I'll get a printed-out regimen/schedule.

I DO agree that the port pain is worse than my lumpectomy. Only positive - no drains!

Kayce -- Spa treatment?? I know that my place doesn't provide lunch - just crackers/juice/soda. Have my fingers crossed that they'll have a heated recliner!

Dx July 2007 DCIS Grade 3 (at age 46); Lumpectomy Sept 2007. ER+/PR-; Finished 33 rad tx Jan 2008. 3.5 years of Tamoxifen then quit.. Chemotherapy 3/1/2022 Other Dx DCIS, Right, <1, Stage 0, ER+ Dx IDC, Both breasts, 6cm+, Stage IIIC, Grade 3, ER-/PR-, HER2+, ISH

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