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**Tamoxigang heading towards hearts and valentines - thread 47**

(991 Posts)
BetsyBoop Fri 07-Feb-14 10:40:26

roses are red
violets are blue
sugar is sweet
but cakes are better

<loads up the trolley>

Wren48 Thu 06-Mar-14 21:46:09

traviata, pre op I drove myself nuts worrying about the lump being painful/ spreading. It's really really normal to do so. If you had a biopsy (sorry, can't remember everything you've had) the breast will be bruised and tender. You're anxious, of course you are, and you've had to deal with the emotional anxiety of your daughter going to A&E. Do give your BCN a call; she will be supportive.

mummywheel, the tender scalp seems to be part of the jolly old hair falling out deal - as you say, just like you've bruised it (all over). Mine's feeling a bit better now (but it's not a good look; roll on completely bald...).

Wren48 Thu 06-Mar-14 21:48:35

Happy birthday (!!!!), It'snotonlythegoodbits. I was very sick too on round one, but it's great if you're already eating and drinking. Drink lots to flush it all through... And ask for better meds next time round... Hope you're on the up now!

traviata Thu 06-Mar-14 21:52:05

thanks wren.

It helps a lot to write it down, and it helps even more to read a reply. You're right, I should call BCN tomorrow, she is lovely.

Updatingmywill Thu 06-Mar-14 21:55:08

I'm also sporting a buzz cut, as of about 20 minutes ago and I'm feeling okay about it! It did take some doing though - the Espace Bien Etre at the hospital (which I think must be equivalent to look good feel better in the UK) said I could go in and get my hair cut. Actually looking back, maybe they said shaved and I heard cut, because when I went in today to get it done, they only wanted to shave it all off. And that was a step too far.

The poor woman kept saying that it wouldn't look pretty, as though going bald would!! She then dashed off to consult a colleague and when she came back, dragged out an appropriate looking razor - but she had never used it before, didn't know which way was up (literally - I had to turn it over for her) and didn't know how to use it. It didn't stop her from having a go but it didn't work out well. And she didn't even have a hairdressing cape / gown to cover up my clothes! After a few minutes of wrangling the 4 towels that she had given me to cover up with, in between showing her what to do, I gave up and left - with a pigs breakfast for hair. And fuming about hair all over my work clothes.

Thankfully my dh does know what he is doing so he said he would fix it ... only to have his razor run out of charge within 2 or 3 minutes!! The back up razor was able to be plugged in though. Finally I have a Sinead O'Connor look and it does feel better. (Yes, it looks a bit thin but then it always has, even before chemo. grin)

Yes yes to painful scalp Mummywheel - mine has been sore since Tuesday when the first few hairs appeared in the sink. I wore a scarf to work that day in fear of it appearing in drifts on my shoulders and desk. That first day out in a scarf was hard, especially as no-one at the office mentioned it! It was positively spooky, like I thought it was there but maybe I was imagining it!! Anyway, 3 days and 3 different scarves later and I'm comfortable with it.

Good luck with your headgear Wren. Sounds like you need a bikini pickle! Hope everyone sleeps tonight!

Wren48 Fri 07-Mar-14 08:12:03

Blimey, updating, that is an epic hair cut. I'm glad it's got a positive outcome. I also liked my cool short hair - it's gone beyond that now, but it's cheering to know that when it starts to grow back it won't take long to get to a length I like the look of. And I am also finding scarves a much more comfortable option than I thought I would.

malteserzz Fri 07-Mar-14 08:44:16

Morning everyone
Hugs to everyone losing their hair it's not easy at all, I remember mine coming out and finding it all over the floor, down my bra etc. I wore my wig from August to January and now it is growing quite quickly so it doesn't last forever

Traviata it's a common thing to think every twinge is the cancer spreading it doesn't mean that it is, it's horrible waiting for surgery, results etc

Good bits happy belated birthday smile I'm glad you finally started chemo make sure you tell them you were so sick so you can get stronger meds next time

Wren how are you doing now ?

I'm shattered today,had a busy day yesterday so will just chill apart from rads today

ConsiderablyBiggerBuns Fri 07-Mar-14 10:27:00

Hello, another one asking to join the gang please.
Very early on in the process here, went into clinic for what I hoped would be very quick reassuring mammogram to come out later after biopsy with the news that I have multiple (but small) cancerous lumps in breast and possibly lymph nodes. This all happened on Monday, having to wait for the full biopsy results and treatment plan next Wednesday - at least I will be prepared and will take a sensible adult with me to make notes. Not sleeping well due to vivid imagination, I have some discomfort in my legs - and have had for some time but had put it down to arthritis - then I made the mistake of googling!
I had radiotherapy for Hodgkin's disease 30 years ago which has links to BC but thought I had escaped.
You might guess from my user name that I was in a production of Calendar Girls last year - ironic eh? But at least I got the chance to get them out when I could! Might have to NC to considerablysmallerbuns or considerablylopsidedbuns depending on how things progress. I hate the not knowing and the lack of control - as mentioned up thread. I have 2 DDs 13 & 14 hate keeping things from them and will let them know but wanted to have more facts first. Sorry for the long introduction but pleased I've found you all.

malteserzz Fri 07-Mar-14 10:43:45

Welcome bigger buns though sorry you have to join us. Think we would all agree you at the worst stage now when you don't know exactly how things are and what's going to happen. I was at your stage last May and it's not been easy but am about to leave for my last but one radiotherapy session and you will get there too smile

ConsiderablyBiggerBuns Fri 07-Mar-14 10:50:42

Thanks for speedy response malt needing some hand holding at the moment - don't want to burden loved ones in RL so some virtual BC buddies should be just what the doctor ordered!

foofooyeah Fri 07-Mar-14 10:52:22

Welcome biggerbuns
Agree with malt that this is a horrid time for you. It seems to take time to get treatment ball rolling, but it will. Your plan may also change so be prepared for that. They may send you for an MRI as well.

And yes, those middle of the night terrors .... We have all had those.

Welcome biggerbuns, you are at the horrid stage of having some of the info, and no treatment plan as yet. You will feel more in control once you've had your appointment next week. You have also broken the rule that many of us have set ourselves; never, ever Google anything to do with your health! A lot of the info you'll find is inaccurate / out of date / not applicable to your unique circumstances. So many of us have been through the sleepless night terrors, I sympathise completely - your mind can take you to some dark places. Feel free to vent and ask anything; so many of us have been there.

ConsiderablyBiggerBuns Fri 07-Mar-14 12:57:00

Thanks for the welcome. I absolutely know about not googling - had set the same condition on myself, as had my husband. When I explained why I wasn't feeling so chirpy this morning he said he couldn't say anything cos he had googled too! I was actually looking at whether there was any trend for people suffering from BC as result of radiation treatment but didn't find anything useful anyway! Will attempt to rely on the good sense and guidance from you guys instead. One question - does everyone get chemo or are there some types of BC where surgery and rads are sufficient?

Lilymaid Fri 07-Mar-14 13:06:52

Biggerbuns if you want more information, just stick to sites such as Macmillan and Breast Cancer Care. I made the mistake of Googling for information about DS's leukaemia - there was loads of old information that told me he had only up to 5 years to live, whereas, due to modern treatments, his life expectancy is pretty well normal.
So, I don't Google about my breast/bone cancer ... anyway there's much better stuff on t'Internet ... e.g. shopping!

malteserzz Fri 07-Mar-14 13:21:55

Not everyone gets the pleasure of chemo, it depends on the grade of BC and that old chestnut ' because you are young ! '. At 41 they told me from the start I would need chemo

I now only have 1 more rads left yay ! Saw the nurse again today who has given me some more gel and dressings as my skin is starting to have had enough

Yay for only one more Malt! I have 9 and counting - my boob looks like its sunburnt but that's about it so far. My wound where the portacath was removed continues to be a problem - it just won't heal. I appear to have some of the.internal stitches protruding out of it which are irritating the surrounding skin and causing inflammation. So, am now back on antibiotics for that, and back to GP on Mon to have it sorted - probably a bit of local anaesthetic and yanking on stitches / opening it up again and re-stitching. And so it goes on.........

malteserzz Fri 07-Mar-14 15:48:29

Handbags that does sound a pain hope you get it sorted soon.My skin is quite bad under my boob,they say because it rubs and doesn't get any air under there. It's starting to split so I have some gel and what looks like a sanitary pad to put under it ! Doesn't hurt anyway just looks a mess

Tiny100 Fri 07-Mar-14 16:56:23

Welcome BigBuns! Yes, step away from Dr. Google, he will scare the living daylights out of you. There have been a couple ladies on here who haven't had chemo, but most of us have. Don't worry too much about chemo, whilst it is not a walk in the park it is perfectly doable. A good Consultant or Oncolgist should be able to answer your questions about Hodgkins/radiotherapy.

Tiny100 Fri 07-Mar-14 17:13:19

Handbag - what a pain that your portacath wound is playing up, hopefully your Doctor can sort it out once and for all. You sound like you are flying through the rads - yay!

Malt - the finish line is almost in sight! I have been meaning to ask, when did they decide to give you booster sessions and did they give you a reason why they were needed? I am planning a few things for the end of treatment and wanted to factor this in just in case

ConsiderablyBiggerBuns Fri 07-Mar-14 19:37:38

Folks, I hope you realise how comforting it is for newbies like me to have a ready made community for info, hand holding and the rest. I am looking forward to be able to impart some positivity and advice to others in the future. I am off out for a wine (or two) with a very close friend who beat kidney cancer last year and has DDs the same age as mine. One of the only people who knows in RL.

Arghh Malt to boob sanitary pad! The undignified stuff we have to contend with!

Tiny I'm having the boost rads too, like Malt. This is to ensure that the area where the lump was removed is properly blasted. I would imagine Malt's is the same - like me she had her lump out before chemo. I have a friend whose rads are running in parallel with mine - she had her chemo before surgery and her lump was completely removed by the chemo, so she's just having rads to her whole boob, but no boost.

Sorry very wafflely - am having some pink fizz - I don't drink very often at all these days and it's gone straight to my (chemo) brain.

Biggerbuns have a great evening out - good to hear you'll be able to chat with someone who really understands.

malteserzz Fri 07-Mar-14 20:14:03

Tiny I was told at my 1st rads session, I already had all my times for 3 weeks and they just handed me a new list which was for 4 and told me I would be having the boost. No explanation. Since found out its because if my age and because it was grade 3 and in a node but no idea why they didn't then decide to give it me earlier on

Handbags yes that's how I understand it too

Big buns have a nice evening

Am also on the wine, pink here cheers everyone !

ItsNotOnlyTheGoodBits Fri 07-Mar-14 21:00:56

Thanks for the advice re stronger meds Wren and Malt, will be sure to ask them about it.

I think I tried to do too much yesterday as I was feeling better after being so sick the night before. So was quite tired all day today what with school runs and all. Managed to rest this evening and my mother came by with a birthday cake. Another early night for me tonight. Thankfully I am, so far, not suffering from insomnia like many others. I could sleep for England at the mo!

Managed to eat and drink well today as well, and only very little nausea this morning.

Welcome to BiggerBuns hoping everything gets sorted out quickly for you.

AChangeIsComing Fri 07-Mar-14 21:32:28

I hope you don't mind me coming on the thread, but I'd love some advice from you lovely ladies.

I've had my date through for my preventative bilateral mastectomy, without reconstruction, and I'm starting to plan for it and would love some advice on a few things.

How long after the op is it likely to be before I can drive short, local journeys again?

What should I be packing in my hospital bag? They said I'd be in 1-2 nights. I was thinking 2 pairs of button front pjs, but is there anything I wouldn't have thought of?

Is there anything I should make sure I have at home for post-op? I was thinking of getting one of those v-shape pillows to help me get comfortable?

I have a 'pre-op assessment' appointment in a few weeks, what is likely to happen in that appt? They didn't say and I was in too much of a daze to ask.

Any other tips or advice would be really welcome too.

foofooyeah Fri 07-Mar-14 22:42:46

Hi change

Firstly per op assessment: weight, height, mrsa swabs, blood test and medical history, also possibly ECG.

Button through pjs good ... I actually had nighties that buttoned all the way down the front, but stayed in hospital gowns first night.

Post op those v shape cushions would be good, I didn't think of that but just used about 4 pillows. Plenty of help around the house is good too.

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