Saturday, 21 November 2009

Saturday - Day 4 of Cycle 2

It's been an upsy-downsy week; that's the way it goes, I suppose.

We went to see the Oncologist on Monday & she's put on 11lbs since she last saw him. The Dietitian was very surprised & very pleased & the Onc said: "if the cancer's really bad, it's often impossible to gain weight", so that sounds promising. (She has understandably mixed feelings about the weight gain, but she certainly looks good!!)

The Onc asked her if she's started losing her hair yet ... that "yet" was a shock as previously everyone on the medical teams has said she isn't expected to lose it. He said she's unlikely to go bald but she will experience hair loss within the next week or two. That did come as a blow to her & a surprise to me, too.

He was able to throw some light on the cold damp nose she's been experiencing since she came out of hospital. He said cancer itself can cause sweats & the chemo drugs also cause thinning of the mucus membranes.

The visit was very hard on us both; even though he told us stuff I'd known before, it was still like hearing the diagnosis afresh, over & over again.

Cycle 2 started on Wednesday & this time it was clearly a bad experience for her. She felt very, very low - even despairing - all Wednesday evening. She's been coping well since Thursday, but there's no repeat of the hyperactivity she had after the last cycle. She's just tired & very subdued. An additional side effect, this time, is a general puffiness in her face & hands.

She talked to the chemo nurses about the hair loss & they said again that she won't lose her hair. When she told them what the Onc had said, they just shrugged & said: "Huh - Doctors!!" Although that sounds comforting, these constant contradictions actually make things worse.

She's experiencing taste changes, too; she said anything mint flavoured burns her mouth (& both toothpaste & red wine are as fiery as a hot curry). I'm surprised as how hard it is to find toothpaste without mint in it.

I'm going out this evening with some diving friends & it's just starting to dawn on me that I've forgotten how to make small-talk!! I hope the skill comes back quickly, or there's a strong risk of me putting a damper on the evening ... or Lor' - I hope not!!

4 comments:

Jean said...

Try sensodyne toothpaste, that's does not seem as strong as other toothpaste's xx

LaLupes said...

Thanks, Jean!! I'll give that one a whirl. xx

Lizzie99 said...

Hi Julia,

Feel really foolish now because just sent you an email without checking on here!!

Hoep your night out went well and you remembered how to talk to other people about other subjects!! Hope you had a glass of wine or two, you certainly deserve it!!
Katie x x

LaLupes said...

Hey, please don't feel foolish!! I was delighted to get both messages!!

Hope you're over the 'flu. xx