Patient Comments: Chemotherapy - Coping With Side Effects

What chemotherapy side effects have you experienced? How do you cope with the side effects?

Comment from: Joe, 75 or over Male (Patient) Published: July 17

Have stage 3 colon cancer. Started zeloda, a pill chemo 2000 mg morning and evening. Each cycle is 3 weeks, two on and one off. I stopped toward the end of two weeks (12.5 days) first cycle. Had pain in both heals of feet, beginning diarrhea and some stomach issues. Will see dr to perhaps reduce dosage.

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Comment from: Bunny, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: July 02

I had stage 1 breast cancer of left breast. Had lumpectomy and radiation. Did fine with that. Then had mammogram found cancer in right breast. Doctors suggested double masectomy at that time had that done and reconstruction. Recovered from that-was glad that was over then had lump on neck. Turned out I had bone and liver cancer (stage 4). Started chemo and I am getting ready to start cycle 6. So far chemo is helping. Doctors are hoping to give me more years of life-I will be grateful for whatever time I get. Keep a positive attitude and try not to stress (easier said than done)!

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Comment from: peg, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: June 28

Have had chemo for 4 months twice a week for lung cancer. Developed abscesses in private area which are extremely painful. Now on my 15th of 30 radiation treatments. Developed abscess on back of right leg(calf area). Keeping others laugh keeps me going.

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Comment from: hannah, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: March 15

I had chemotherapy last year. It was rough and I was doing very poorly. Chemo has left me with lymphedema and problems with my heart. They think it's due to the chemo. It was mild chemo, but I'm still undergoing tests for this and nothing has been confirmed yet.

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Comment from: scaredtodeath, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: December 22

I was diagnosed with colon cancer in December 2008 and had surgery in January 2009. I had two-and-a-half feet of colon removed along with 14 lymph nodes. Cancer was found in three of them. I underwent five chemo treatments and had to be admitted to the hospital with extreme diarrhea -- a duct from the pancreas, kidneys and liver was shutting down. I was hospitalized for three weeks. The doctors would not go on with any treatments so now I am faced with a waiting game and the only option given to me is surgery when the cancer moves to another organ.

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Comment from: red, 65-74 Male (Caregiver) Published: October 07

My husband had Carboplatin & Paclitarel. He did fine during the treatment and now 1 1/2 yrs. later problems are arising. About 8 months ago his vision was blurring and since then it has gotten worse and he is losing his balance. I feel this has got to be a side-effect since all tests have shown nothing. He has the best doctors you could ask for. This is my feeling - it has to be a side effect. Good Luck to all Cancer patients, NEVER give up!

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Comment from: tigger, 35-44 Female (Caregiver) Published: March 11

If I had to do it again at 35 (I'm 37 now), facing all the crap the doctors don't tell you about the effects of chemo: degenerative disc disease (I have the spine of a 70-year-old), severe neuropathy, excessive weight gain, severe lymphedema), I never would have done it. Roll the dice, get it cut out, and go on if you are young. There is no positive data out there supporting your survival rate with aggressive breast cancer. The healthcare system doesn't care how you live when you can't work and have kids, and especially your doctors. You are just a number. This is written by a caregiver for this 37 year old.

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Comment from: 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: March 06

I have had one treatment of chemotherapy, and I'm due for my second in two day's time. My only side effects were a metallic taste in mouth, and hair loss. I've lost three-fourths of my hair already. I knew I would have hair loss, and thought I was prepared for it until it actually happened. I had breast cancer that spread to three of my 19 lymph nodes.

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Patient Comments

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Chemotherapy - Experiences Question: What was your experience with chemotherapy?
Cancer - Patient Experience Question: How was your chemotherapy administered? Were there any complications that resulted from the delivery method?

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