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Topic: Starting radiation March 2020

Forum: Radiation Therapy - Before, During, and After —

What to expect from treatment and ways to cope with side effects.

Posted on: Feb 22, 2020 12:44AM

HeartShapedBox wrote:

A group for those starting or having radiation therapy in March.

I had my simulation Feb 21, and am now scheduled for a dry run March 4, to begin daily treatment the next day (25 sessions plus 5 boosts, 6 weeks total)

Diagnosed at age 43. Triple + luminal B regional spread to lymph nodes, pathological TNM stage llB after 6 sessions neoadjuvant TCHP (dropped perjeta after 4 doses), initial clinical stage lllA Dx 5/24/2019, IDC, Left, 5cm, Stage IIIA, Grade 2, ER+/PR+, HER2+ (IHC) Targeted Therapy 8/1/2019 Perjeta (pertuzumab) Targeted Therapy 8/1/2019 Herceptin (trastuzumab) Chemotherapy 8/1/2019 Carboplatin (Paraplatin), Taxotere (docetaxel) Dx 12/27/2019, DCIS/IDC, Left, 4cm, Stage IIB, Grade 2, 2/8 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+ (IHC) Surgery 12/27/2019 Lymph node removal: Underarm/Axillary; Mastectomy: Left Radiation Therapy 3/4/2020 Whole-breast: Lymph nodes, Chest wall
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Posts 91 - 120 (140 total)

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Mar 24, 2020 04:47AM Martaj wrote:

At radiation yesterday all wore masks. no one in waiting room, They are only allowed to have 1 patient in waiting room, 1 in dressing room and 1 in treatment area. They said precautions. Off to radiation shortly we will see what has changed today. I have a derm appt also. I had a squamous cell carcinoma removed from lower leg, Need to have stitches out. I would do it myself but they said no. Will wear my mask and gloves again.

I asked radiation about the "zingers" in my right armpit after radiation. She told me normal. Had a few in right breast as well. That is side that had cancer. They don't hurt but take you by surprise being that I didn't have them before surgery. RO said normal.

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Mar 24, 2020 02:17PM striveforhealth wrote:

JLBinpdy- Absolutely appreciated hearing about how your BC lead you on a path of woodworking exploration. It's inspiring how you stepped outside of the box and challenged yourself. Thanks so much for sharing that with us. ThumbsUp


Keeping a positive attitude with life's challenges. Dx 12/25/2019, DCIS, Left, 1cm, Stage 0, Grade 2, ER+ Surgery 2/25/2020 Lumpectomy: Left; Reconstruction (left); Reconstruction (right) Radiation Therapy 4/6/2020 Whole-breast: Breast
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Mar 24, 2020 05:28PM momof2winsplus wrote:

Day 10/33 and city is going into voluntary shelter in place. I got handed a letter from Oncology dept that I will have to carry every day to prove that it is medically necessary for me to be out.

Dx 12/12/2019, ILC, Right, 3cm, Stage IIB, Grade 2, 2/18 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- (FISH) Surgery 1/23/2020 Lymph node removal: Right, Sentinel, Underarm/Axillary; Mastectomy: Left, Right; Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement Hormonal Therapy 3/19/2020 Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone) Radiation Therapy External: Lymph nodes, Chest wall
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Mar 24, 2020 07:19PM Moxie32 wrote:

I live in a suburb of Denver. So far, Denver is on a stay at home order as of 5 pm tonight but the surrounding suburbs are not. Makes no sense. I think we will hear tonight if we are following suit.

Diagnosed age 59 / Oncotype 15 Dx 12/27/2019, DCIS, Left, 3cm, Stage 0, Grade 2 Dx 12/27/2019, IDC, Left, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 1, 0/2 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- (IHC) Surgery 1/21/2020 Lumpectomy: Left; Lymph node removal: Sentinel Radiation Therapy 3/19/2020 Whole-breast: Breast Hormonal Therapy 5/1/2020 Femara (letrozole)
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Mar 25, 2020 05:30PM JLBinPDX wrote:

momof2winsp, so interesting how different cities and different hospitals are handling all of this. Our city, Portland, Oregon, has been on "lockdown" and I've never had a letter of any type handed to me (and yes, I go to radiation every day). Seems that no cop is truly going to stop you nor is a cop going to question if you really need to be at or go to the hospital. Just odd; much of this is odd and some just does not fit together as really logical. Yes, let's have Denver on "stay home" order but not the burbs--just kinda weird. I know, though, that everyone's just kinda wingin' it. My radiation is proceeding normally. Last week started no kids under 18 in the hospital; Monday started a temperature check before you could enter; and today most workers dealing with patients are wearing full face shields.

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Mar 25, 2020 07:16PM - edited Mar 26, 2020 12:29PM by Moxie32

Things changed today! The tri-county health dept that my suburb is in locked us down from tomorrow through April 17. Then the governor issued a statewide lockdown through April 11.

I finished 5 of 20 today. No changes in clinic and no letter for me. I see the doctor tomorrow

Diagnosed age 59 / Oncotype 15 Dx 12/27/2019, DCIS, Left, 3cm, Stage 0, Grade 2 Dx 12/27/2019, IDC, Left, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 1, 0/2 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- (IHC) Surgery 1/21/2020 Lumpectomy: Left; Lymph node removal: Sentinel Radiation Therapy 3/19/2020 Whole-breast: Breast Hormonal Therapy 5/1/2020 Femara (letrozole)
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Mar 25, 2020 08:50PM HeartShapedBox wrote:

My cancer clinic (independent from hospital) has stricter protocols daily. I can feel the strain on the nurses and techs, but they're doing what they can. My fellow patients, on the other hand.... 🙄 As usual most can't be bothered to cover a cough or use hand sanitizer after blowing their nose, so it's up to the neutropenic to protect themselves.

13 treatments in (every day 1 gray with the brass bolus and 1 gray without) and I'm feeling it! It doesn't seem to matter what I slather on or how often, I'm pink, tender, itchy, hard to sleep at night just like after surgery. My RO said said my uncomfortable skin surface effects "early" are due to the bolus, but she'd like to get up to 30ish gray (later this week) before she pulls it's use. Can't wait!

I hope everyone is coping with all this stress, and actively protecting themselves and others even if covid-19 "hasn't hit" your city hard yet!

Diagnosed at age 43. Triple + luminal B regional spread to lymph nodes, pathological TNM stage llB after 6 sessions neoadjuvant TCHP (dropped perjeta after 4 doses), initial clinical stage lllA Dx 5/24/2019, IDC, Left, 5cm, Stage IIIA, Grade 2, ER+/PR+, HER2+ (IHC) Targeted Therapy 8/1/2019 Perjeta (pertuzumab) Targeted Therapy 8/1/2019 Herceptin (trastuzumab) Chemotherapy 8/1/2019 Carboplatin (Paraplatin), Taxotere (docetaxel) Dx 12/27/2019, DCIS/IDC, Left, 4cm, Stage IIB, Grade 2, 2/8 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+ (IHC) Surgery 12/27/2019 Lymph node removal: Underarm/Axillary; Mastectomy: Left Radiation Therapy 3/4/2020 Whole-breast: Lymph nodes, Chest wall
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Mar 26, 2020 05:09AM Martaj wrote:

I thank god that my radiation facility is seperate from hospital. Temp checks before entering, masks on all personal, no extra people (visitors) in building. Only one person at a time in waiting room, changing room, xr room. Chest a little pink this am as is under arm. applying creams as instructed. Very bored during day. lots of walks with my dog. I live in RI near popular beaches, many New Yorkers coming to their summer homes. Told to self quaretine for 14 days. NOT happening. I guess we are all dealing with this

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Mar 26, 2020 02:54PM - edited Mar 31, 2020 04:34PM by striveforhealth

I went to my cancer center (not at a hospital) this morning to have the simulation done for my upcoming radiation treatments. Only patients are allowed to enter the building. My experience was similar to Martaj's above. Upon entering the center you are asked the obvious questions, and your temp is taken by a nurse who is gowned, gloved, masked and shielded AND very personable I might add! :-) Aside from him, and one other patient in the reception area I only encountered the receptionist behind glass and the technician who worked with me. My RO came in briefly to do markings. The changing area and restroom was private for one individual. The waiting area wasn't needed because I was the only patient in the radiation area and was ushered directly into the CT scanner room after changing. My technician was excellent at her job and took the time to explain every step of the simulation process. It took about 45 minutes from walking in the door to walking out. Other than my bad back being a little uncomfortable on the hard table it was painless.

I think it's important to note that I was offered pen markings OR tattoos. I had planned to choose pen markings so it was nice that they offered me a choice instead of me having to say I don't want tattoos. I was given instructions on showering and told that the markings are checked and reapplied as needed . They are covered with an small piece of adhesive film.

I felt like my safety was most important and was treated with a great degree of care and respect. The technician couldn't have been nicer. I thanked her for coming to work so I could get treated. I return in one week for x-rays and the treatments begin on April 6 so I will be an April Radiation patient. Guess I'll start a new monthly thread! :-)I will also see the RO every Tuesday during the 6 weeks of treatments. Glad to be moving forward with treatment.

Blessings to all.

Keeping a positive attitude with life's challenges. Dx 12/25/2019, DCIS, Left, 1cm, Stage 0, Grade 2, ER+ Surgery 2/25/2020 Lumpectomy: Left; Reconstruction (left); Reconstruction (right) Radiation Therapy 4/6/2020 Whole-breast: Breast
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Mar 26, 2020 05:55PM Moxie32 wrote:

That's great Strive - good luck to you!

I did 6 / 20 today and then met the RO for about 2 minutes. Just faintly pink so far and I felt a little tired at the end of my 3 mile walk today, but that could just be general pandemic stress/not sleeping.

They have yet to take my temp except at my weekly appointments but they ask me if I have any flu-like symptoms every day.


Diagnosed age 59 / Oncotype 15 Dx 12/27/2019, DCIS, Left, 3cm, Stage 0, Grade 2 Dx 12/27/2019, IDC, Left, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 1, 0/2 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- (IHC) Surgery 1/21/2020 Lumpectomy: Left; Lymph node removal: Sentinel Radiation Therapy 3/19/2020 Whole-breast: Breast Hormonal Therapy 5/1/2020 Femara (letrozole)
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Mar 26, 2020 09:06PM - edited Mar 26, 2020 09:06PM by striveforhealth

Moxie32 - I'm glad you didn't get "locked out" of your treatment. The facility where I'm getting mine have reduced staff and are only operating one machine out of the two but I had no problems getting my appointments. You're into week 2 and that's when my doctor said some patients begin to experience a little fatigue. Hope it doesn't keep you from getting out for some daily exercise. :-)

Keeping a positive attitude with life's challenges. Dx 12/25/2019, DCIS, Left, 1cm, Stage 0, Grade 2, ER+ Surgery 2/25/2020 Lumpectomy: Left; Reconstruction (left); Reconstruction (right) Radiation Therapy 4/6/2020 Whole-breast: Breast
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Mar 27, 2020 11:55PM JRNJ wrote:

JLbinPDX, Love the woodworking! I love fixing things and doing house projects, it's like like therapy for me. I've been painting this week, which is probably why I'm in a lot of pain, duh. I'ven done wood moulding, but that was really tough. What is the other gem you are withholding, can't keep us in limbo!

Heartshaped, What is bolus? Sorry you can't sleep that is the worst. It ruins everything.

Strivefor health, I think they screwed up on my tattoo, I'm pissed. The lower one is a little dot, like she said it would be. The upper one which is above my tee shirt line and can be seen is much larger and x shaped. I'm not too happy about it.

I start 3/30. I also was hoping to feel better and I finished chemo 3/10 and was really happy about that but am feeling down now too because taste is still horrible and I developed neuropathy in my right hand at night in the last few weeks. Last night was the worst, a lot of pain and didn't sleep much. I need to get up and move around for it to get better. I am also mentally struggling because it is only the cancer arm/side, and I'm afraid it means the cancer is growing, because I had the same symptom before surgery and my chemo is not supposed to cause neuropathy.

NJ is #2 State in the country with corona cases, 57 in my town, 236 in the neighboring town.

I'm missing soccer, I think more than the kids. Today they both asked me to hang out with friends tomorrow and their friends parents said ok. How do I respond to that? No, because you might kill your mother. I said they can ride bikes only, no hanging out, and stay 6 feet apart.

No signs of canceling radiation, but I had an appointment with a gyn oncologist this week and they delayed me for a month. I had a feeling. I want to get my ovaries out and I think they will consider it elective and delay it. So I'll have to just wait and see. I'm doing radiation til mid April.


Pleomorphic Multifocal, Extra nodal Extension, Lymphovascular Invasion. TEs removed due to infection Dx 8/15/2019, ILC, Right, 2cm, Grade 3, 2/5 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Dx 8/15/2019, LCIS, Right, 6cm+, Grade 3, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 9/24/2019 Lymph node removal: Sentinel; Mastectomy: Right; Prophylactic mastectomy: Left; Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement Chemotherapy 12/2/2019 CMF Radiation Therapy 3/30/2020 Whole-breast: Breast, Lymph nodes, Chest wall
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Mar 28, 2020 05:19AM Martaj wrote:

Week 2 of radiation finished. So far breast little pink but fades by morning, also a little tired. Walking everyday to get the fresh air and boosts by mental well being. 4 more weeks to go.

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Mar 28, 2020 01:56PM Phoebesnow wrote:

Hi, I am so grateful you posted and I found it! I also went direct to implants and started radiation on 3/23/20. How are you doing now? How is your skin and implants holding up? Are there any more tips that you can give me. My skin is very delicate, thin and sun damaged. I have had radiation previously to the pelvis...which was incredibly difficult. I hope you are keeping well

Carrol walsh
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Mar 28, 2020 08:23PM HeartShapedBox wrote:

JRNJ (I'm also a fan of home fixit projects and woodworking!) A "bolus" is a material like brass chainmail or rubber sheet, placed on a radiation site to increase the skin surface dose. It's commonly used for chest wall radiation on mastectomy patients who didn't have reconstruction- I guess because there's such a thin layer of tissue above the ribs it helps target all the tissue somehow by "tricking" the machine into thinking there's a bigger layer of you there.

I'm sorry you're still feeling crappy from chemo, but it gets better week by week! It really was a full month before I felt "better", so give it time! Surgery is also pretty intense to heal from, and could have affected nerves in your arm. Swelling, or even lack of regular movement after surgery can cause shoulder and arm issues. It must be so stressful being in NJ during during this time, stress tightens muscles and can cause nerve pain too!

I think your idea of "distant" play for your kids is good, IF it can be enforced! I don't have kids but my friends who have very social kids going crazy have allowed supervised, distant, contact-free in-person play like bike rides and foot-only soccer at a distance.

Diagnosed at age 43. Triple + luminal B regional spread to lymph nodes, pathological TNM stage llB after 6 sessions neoadjuvant TCHP (dropped perjeta after 4 doses), initial clinical stage lllA Dx 5/24/2019, IDC, Left, 5cm, Stage IIIA, Grade 2, ER+/PR+, HER2+ (IHC) Targeted Therapy 8/1/2019 Perjeta (pertuzumab) Targeted Therapy 8/1/2019 Herceptin (trastuzumab) Chemotherapy 8/1/2019 Carboplatin (Paraplatin), Taxotere (docetaxel) Dx 12/27/2019, DCIS/IDC, Left, 4cm, Stage IIB, Grade 2, 2/8 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+ (IHC) Surgery 12/27/2019 Lymph node removal: Underarm/Axillary; Mastectomy: Left Radiation Therapy 3/4/2020 Whole-breast: Lymph nodes, Chest wall
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Mar 28, 2020 10:11PM Rosie24 wrote:

Hi! I’m from the Starting in Feb 2020 group, about a week after completing my rads. I had some pretty bad red areas and my clavicle was the worst with blistering. It gets better fast, once you finish. Here’s what I just posted to my group, thought maybe it would be helpful to someone here too.

(Cross-posted). I just want to check in and say that my skin issues are just about gone! I have some peeling areas but no more tenderness or redness. DH took a little video of me ringing the bell and put it on FB for our friends. I have a nasty red area right above my neckline (clavicle area) of my shirt, ugh. I had a jacket on that I could have adjusted but didn't even think of it. So I guess I can always look back and remember that burn!

My best learning experience: Mepilex was definitely my friend once I finished for that area. I could have used it sooner but I was afraid of the stickiness being painful to remove. It wasn't at all. If anyone reading this has painful or even blistering burns please ask your RO team for some. It's a dressing for wounds that has a peel off back with a slightly sticky side that goes on the skin. It feels good and protects the area from irritating clothing or other touching. It seemed to accelerate my healing, but I don’t know if that’s part of the purpose or not.

Good luck to everyone! 😊


Dx 1/23/2019, DCIS/IDC, Left, 3cm, Stage IV, metastasized to liver, Grade 3, ER+/PR-, HER2- (FISH) Targeted Therapy 1/24/2019 Ibrance (palbociclib) Hormonal Therapy 1/24/2019 Femara (letrozole) Surgery 12/4/2019 Lumpectomy: Left
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Mar 29, 2020 07:09AM Moxie32 wrote:

Thanks Rosie! All the best to you.

Diagnosed age 59 / Oncotype 15 Dx 12/27/2019, DCIS, Left, 3cm, Stage 0, Grade 2 Dx 12/27/2019, IDC, Left, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 1, 0/2 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- (IHC) Surgery 1/21/2020 Lumpectomy: Left; Lymph node removal: Sentinel Radiation Therapy 3/19/2020 Whole-breast: Breast Hormonal Therapy 5/1/2020 Femara (letrozole)
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Mar 29, 2020 02:27PM Flowerkid wrote:

I was feeling comfortable with my stand alone breast cancer center and the fact that I don't have to walk into a hospital right now. But someone just got me nervous about the radiation nurses who are literally standing over me, moving me, putting my chin guard on, etc..they don't wear masks. They say they have to check their temperature daily but that doesn't mean much to me..

Does anyone 's nurses wear masks? What do you do to protect yourself on the radiation table?

I should have asked my RO on Friday when we had a face to face...

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Mar 29, 2020 06:20PM momof2winsplus wrote:

I have done 13/33 rads, and it is starting to get rough. I am having trouble swallowing food (supraclavicular rads) and my tissue expander is getting tighter and causing some discomfort. I also had to have my 16 year old drive me on Friday due to fatigue. She volunteered to drive the rest of the time - glad to get out of the house, even though she only sits in the car!

Dx 12/12/2019, ILC, Right, 3cm, Stage IIB, Grade 2, 2/18 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- (FISH) Surgery 1/23/2020 Lymph node removal: Right, Sentinel, Underarm/Axillary; Mastectomy: Left, Right; Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement Hormonal Therapy 3/19/2020 Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone) Radiation Therapy External: Lymph nodes, Chest wall
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Mar 29, 2020 06:37PM JRNJ wrote:

Heartshaped, thanks. I have a mastectomy without reconstruction but they didn’t mention using anything. I have a lot of thick skin though from a failed reconstruction

Flowerkid thanks for making me paranoid lol just kidding. I wasn’t too concerned until I read your post. That is a legitimate concern. I guess I’ll wear a mask? My radiation center is in a different building than the hospital.

momof2 sorry to hear that. Hope you feel better. My taste buds are still shot from chemo. Can’t wait to enjoy food again!

I start tomorrow!!

Pleomorphic Multifocal, Extra nodal Extension, Lymphovascular Invasion. TEs removed due to infection Dx 8/15/2019, ILC, Right, 2cm, Grade 3, 2/5 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Dx 8/15/2019, LCIS, Right, 6cm+, Grade 3, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 9/24/2019 Lymph node removal: Sentinel; Mastectomy: Right; Prophylactic mastectomy: Left; Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement Chemotherapy 12/2/2019 CMF Radiation Therapy 3/30/2020 Whole-breast: Breast, Lymph nodes, Chest wall
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Mar 29, 2020 07:58PM HeartShapedBox wrote:

Flowerkid my techs and nurses all wear masks, gowns, and glasses now, although it's been piece by piece of gear and precautions over the past two weeks. If you're uncomfortable you could wear a mask yourself.

I watched a very helpful video of a Dr saying even the regular flimsy masks that don't filter all the airborne virus (for if someone coughed in your face) still do a lot of good, and MOSTLY by not allowing you to touch your own face. He works in a NY hospital w covid-19 patients, and said the absolute biggest threat was touching your face, and that's by far how it's mostly transmitted because we do so much of it without thinking! If you use hand sanitizer before and after treatment, before and after the dressing room, you'd really have to have a tech cough or sneeze in the room to be exposed to it.

Day 17 for me tomorrow, it's nice to be over halfway there. I made a couple additions this past week that really seemed to help! One was upping my intake of turmeric, which is a great anti inflammatory (not hard since I already enjoy it in curries, rice dishes etc). The other was remembering how I used to use vinegar to turn sunburns to tan (back when I was less responsible about sun exposure) It works like the tea does, tightening and toning tissue. When showering I spray the area with a slightly diluted mix of vinegar, and let it sit a bit before rinsing. The past week of doing these things has made my redness go WAY down and turn more tan than pink (My partner noticed and couldn't believe my redness had gone down so significantly!) I also feel less sensitive, although it's still pretty tender. I think it's also helped to go around topless a lot (while I have my manuka honey mix on) or with a soft fleecy robe, as friction seems to play a big part in irritation and skin damage.

Diagnosed at age 43. Triple + luminal B regional spread to lymph nodes, pathological TNM stage llB after 6 sessions neoadjuvant TCHP (dropped perjeta after 4 doses), initial clinical stage lllA Dx 5/24/2019, IDC, Left, 5cm, Stage IIIA, Grade 2, ER+/PR+, HER2+ (IHC) Targeted Therapy 8/1/2019 Perjeta (pertuzumab) Targeted Therapy 8/1/2019 Herceptin (trastuzumab) Chemotherapy 8/1/2019 Carboplatin (Paraplatin), Taxotere (docetaxel) Dx 12/27/2019, DCIS/IDC, Left, 4cm, Stage IIB, Grade 2, 2/8 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+ (IHC) Surgery 12/27/2019 Lymph node removal: Underarm/Axillary; Mastectomy: Left Radiation Therapy 3/4/2020 Whole-breast: Lymph nodes, Chest wall
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Mar 30, 2020 05:16AM Martaj wrote:

Flowerkid, all the radiation staff at facility I go to wear masks and gloves. Even the receptionist who sits behind a glass partition. Off to #11/30 shortly

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Mar 30, 2020 07:52AM ziggzmom wrote:

Hi everyone ~ it feels like forever since I've been on here with the craziness of all that is going on in the world. Setting up work-from-home space has been a challenge, picking up a kid from college, and the daily treatments all have me scrambling! I finished 15 of 30 on Friday, so halfway there. My armpit area is the worst. It is very red, very tender, and getting tight. That really ramped up the last couple days of last week. I meet with my RO tomorrow and we'll see what he says. I'm also asked the nurse practitioner today about my husband moving to work from home. His company supplies equipment for defense, medical, and agricultural contracts so they are deemed essential. ARGH! (But my house has probably never been cleaned this much in my entire married life.)

Dx 12/11/2019, IDC, Left, 2cm, Stage IB, Grade 2, 1/3 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- (FISH) Surgery 1/13/2020 Lumpectomy: Left; Lymph node removal: Sentinel, Underarm/Axillary
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Mar 30, 2020 09:17AM Moxie32 wrote:

Everyone at the hospital I go to for treatments is wearing masks. Not sure on gloves but they aren’t touching me except moving me with sheet.

I made myself a cotton mask I can put a non-woven filter in. I wash it every day.

Diagnosed age 59 / Oncotype 15 Dx 12/27/2019, DCIS, Left, 3cm, Stage 0, Grade 2 Dx 12/27/2019, IDC, Left, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 1, 0/2 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- (IHC) Surgery 1/21/2020 Lumpectomy: Left; Lymph node removal: Sentinel Radiation Therapy 3/19/2020 Whole-breast: Breast Hormonal Therapy 5/1/2020 Femara (letrozole)
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Mar 30, 2020 10:14AM Eigna wrote:

Hello ladies,

I just got a phone call from the hospital. I’m starting treatments tomorrow (yikes!). 20 times. Hope all goes well.

Diagnosed at 43. Weakly ER+ Dx 8/20/2019, Left, 1cm, Stage IB, Grade 3, 0/2 nodes, ER+/PR-, HER2- (FISH) Surgery 10/10/2019 Lumpectomy: Left Chemotherapy 12/17/2019 Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide), Taxotere (docetaxel) Radiation Therapy 3/31/2020 Whole-breast: Breast
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Mar 30, 2020 11:08AM - edited Mar 30, 2020 11:17AM by JLBinPDX

Eigna, grasp it and jump into it. I think you might be surprised that radiation is really tolerable (at least for most of us). You've had chemo, so you're going to think that radiation is a walk in the park. I take a short 2 minute mini-nap or mediatation. Best to you!

Flowerkid, things may change any day. My hospital had a change every day I was there last week. It's now scanning for temperature when you enter the hospital, then checking in at the front, face shields for everyone dealing with patients, and now radiation patients are asked to wear a mask (gloves are not part of what's going on in radiation but I'm fine with what they're doing). You may find it different today than even last Friday.

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Mar 30, 2020 02:49PM elizapt wrote:

Hi, all, I started my rads last week, 16 in total. Today will be treatment #6. The first week I definitely had quite a bit of swelling and my breast felt very hot every night. The weekend off definitely helped to calm all of that. I'm working with an acupuncturist and this is the formula she gave me. She had been doing cancer support for 30 years. 1/4 tube of calendula cream, 1/4 tube of arnica cream, and 1/4 cup of pureed oatmeal. This is enough for two nights. I use it like a poultice, everywhere! I just wear an old t-shirt over it. And I can tell you that my breast actually feels cold in about an hour. Soooo soothing. I do feel tired...but hard to tell since there is so much other stress right now. I am a high school teacher so last week was also the first of online school. I have been diligent about working out almost every day, trying to stay determined but it's a bit difficult being in isolation on top of everything.

I have my temp taken every day at my cancer center but the techs do not wear masks or gloves. I am going to question that today. My cancer center is not taking any new rads patients now unless it is an emergency. They are having reduced hours, I guess.

Hang in there, everyone!

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Mar 30, 2020 06:17PM Moxie32 wrote:

Today was 8 / 20.

They took my temp before I went into the rad onc department, and they called me back instead of handing me a pager (they were using the ones like when you are waiting for a restaurant table).

Diagnosed age 59 / Oncotype 15 Dx 12/27/2019, DCIS, Left, 3cm, Stage 0, Grade 2 Dx 12/27/2019, IDC, Left, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 1, 0/2 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- (IHC) Surgery 1/21/2020 Lumpectomy: Left; Lymph node removal: Sentinel Radiation Therapy 3/19/2020 Whole-breast: Breast Hormonal Therapy 5/1/2020 Femara (letrozole)
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Mar 30, 2020 09:11PM Flowerkid wrote:

Today, day 16, my temperature was taken for the first time, in addition to the daily questionnaire. Still no masks. Seems odd since my place is so great about so many things. I know they take the staff's temp daily, but that doesn't mean so much. I will ask again.

Do you actually wear a mask on the table? I am quite sure they would say no for me, it would get in the way. I wear some kind of mouth/chin guard.

And yes Eigna good luck tomorrow!! It is not so terrible having been through chemo and surgery! Make sure to exercise and take naps

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Mar 30, 2020 09:12PM havefaithtoday wrote:

Elizapt, I had #6 today too, but I have a total of 20. How did you get by with only 16?

Moxie32, how are you feeling? I'm just starting to feel tenderness and soreness.


Have Faith Today! Dx 10/29/2019, IDC, Right, 2cm, Stage IIB, Grade 3, 1/3 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 11/19/2019 Lumpectomy: Right; Lymph node removal: Sentinel Chemotherapy 12/23/2019 Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide), Taxotere (docetaxel) Radiation Therapy 3/23/2020 Whole-breast: Breast, Lymph nodes

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