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Keane's Chemo Adventures, Update #2 - April 30, 2009

Yeah, I know I said I was going to post something from Chemo yesterday.

I get 'handstick'ed (or is that handstuck) for chemo. That means I don't have a permanent 'port' (which is a permanent or semi- permanent intra-venous connection), so they stick the IV needle into my hand. (I hate needles, and still can't watch myself being stuck. But I've been stuck in so many places so many times over the past 6 weeks, that saying I got stuck in the hand for an IV no longer has any squick factor for me.)

Well, the first time I had chemo, I had a port. The second time, my hand didn't cooperate, so an IV nurse was called, and she found a place on the side of my hand, but I could still type. This time, they got a vein right between my middle and ring fingers, making it pretty darned impossible to type. (It was partly taped to the fingers.) Between that and the drugs, I somehow lost all ambition of getting on usenet. :-)

They're giving me a new drug for nausea, a three pill regimen, one pill per day. So far, so good. It could be that I'm no longer on massive doses of anti-biotics, but I have no nausea. It could be that the chemo drugs aren't killing as many cancer cells (hopefully the numbers are declining :-), so the toxins that are released from the dead cancer cells has decreased. I don't care, the only thing that's messing with me is the prednisone. And I can't believe I'm saying this, but that's a good thing. Can't drive, but it's not as debilitating as nausea is.

Oh, amusing side effects to this drug: tiredness, nausea (yes, the side effect to an anti-nausea drug is nausea), hiccups, constipation, diarrhea (what happens if you get both? Do you explode?), loss of appetite, headache and hair loss. If you don't count hiccups and headache, I've had all the side effects of this drug before I even took it...

And have you ever noticed that the drugs that make you not want to eat the most has to be taken with food? During a time you really don't have an appetite to start with? Okay, maybe you haven't noticed, but I sure as heck have.

So anyway, total time taken was from 8:30am when they took a blood sample, to 3:00pm when the last of the drugs was pumped into me. Got to the drug store for meds at 3:30, got a bite to eat, and home by 4:30. So it took the entire day. Might as well get used to it, and assume the rest of the treatments will take as long.

After 4 or 5 hours of sleep, I'm up before midnight and can't get back to sleep. So I'm posting. Sad. And the posts are wordy. That's why I shouldn't post right after chemo. The Prednisone does weird stuff to my brain. :-)

I'm half done. Three more treatments, 9 weeks and 5 days. All of this started 6 weeks 4 days ago. So, I'm really not half-way done, but it's close enough...

Keane
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