First 40 hours of FEC-H...
New prescription from Dr. Y for the nausea + an email: "Joe - let me know if she is acting goofy or confused. It's probably ok to be tired."
Now, I feel both goofy and confused, at the mere suggestion... As for tired, after a 2 1/2 hour nap, I fell asleep last night around 9:30p with Nia and am awake now at 4a, nauseous. Joy!
These beauties are my new Epirubicin injections -- the E in FEC (rhymes with "deck" for those who want to be hip to chemo lingo). (For those in the know, E is similar to the "A" in AC chemo regiments.) There are three bright red syringes plus one clear one that is my new 5-FU (the F in FEC). And then there is the C bag, my new Cytoxan (the C in both FEC and AC). Why would anyone name a chemo drug "toxin?" Pam wants to know. Good question. That's the drug that is going to take the rest of my hair, and possibly leave me infertile. Good 'ole C bag.
The last 36 hours or so it is the 5-FU that is working me over. When Joe and I got home from chemo I was fairly buzzy and steroid-y. I worked with the chicks, watered the garden, etc. While Joe and I Nia wrestled on the bed, I layed down to read and that's when I started getting really nauseous. I layed the magazine down and dozed for an hour or so. Both nausea and drowsiness are uncommon for me on steroid-y days when all the pre-meds are still running around in my body. (Plus, with my new FEC regiment, I get not one but two bags of anti-nausea medicines, one considered to be top-of-the-line, or the "big guns," as the chemo nurse put it. I like to think of it as "top shelf").
It was hard to find anything to combat the nausea. The drugs I had at home were psychotropic -- meaning they help my brain not to feel the messages of nausea from my stomach (as Joe puts it, they make my brain forget how to puke). The drugs they give me intravenously during chemo are the same. So, safe to say those receptors are flooded. I should have long forgotten how to throw-up.
And while I haven't been throw-uping exactly, I did spend some time spitting into the toilet and have slept two nights with a bowl by my bedside.
But now I have yet another prescription. This one is supposed to work differently than the other two nausea meds I have at home. And so far it does seem to work fairly well.
In other news, it looks like I'm going to loose both my big toes (edit: make that toenails -- phew!). Left overs from Taxol. As Joe and I have been joking, this is clearly one of the more devastating sides of breast cancer & chemo. I mean seriously: A pedicure looks pretty icky minus the big toes, yes? (Edit: Toenails!! Is this the goofy/confusing coming through?)
Met a woman in chemo yesterday who is fighting Stage 4 renal (kidney) cancer. In the last year since her diagnosis, chemo has been rough for her. She's lost 140 lbs! She told me this startling fact with a mix of horror and pride... Strange thing this cancer, both physically and psychologically....
And finally, on a sweeter note: Nia and I made fresh Cherries & Cream ice cream last night before bed. Just five ingredients: Fresh cherries, whole milk, sugar, cream, and vanilla extract. Not that I'll be eating much of it, but I'm looking forward to a taste. Gotta enjoy little bits of summer where I can.