Cancer Treatment, Fifth Week

They way it’s been is I see the radiation Doc who’s supervising the treatment and right afterwards some new side effect starts to develop. In this case, after the Wednesday appointment of the fourth week my saliva started to get thick and ropy. It got to a point of I’ll call it moderate intensity and stayed there. I can still swallow but it begins to be a chore. Appetite decreased. Diet has been going toward liquid. Soups, juices, commercial nutrient shakes. I can still chew, but it’s a chore. Lost about 10 pounds in 5 weeks. Abdomen is experiencing periods of minimal queasiness. I’m supposed to wait for “severe nausea” to take compazine. This isn’t even quite nausea. But going in that direction. White cells and platelets are down but “not too bad.” They are suspending one of the chemo drugs, taxol, because they don’t like one of my liver numbers. This will slightly change the possibility of metastases in … Read more

Cancer Treatment Update

We’re three weeks and 4 days in on a six and a half week course. They’re doing radiation on my throat 5 days a week and chemo once a week. The Taxol chemo has a possible side effect of peripheral neuropathy, which is altered sensation in the fingers and toes. To forestall that we used ice gloves and booties. First time we went straight through for an hour and a half. That was rough. I devised a meditative “distraction” routine: breathe this way, then that way, etc. and then we were convinced that we could take breaks. So next time we went twenty minutes ice then five minutes break. Stopped being a problem. Then this last blood test the bilirubin was high so they suspended the Taxol for next week, so we won’t need to use cold gloves anyway. The big difference in the first two weeks was the time. It’s been basically twelve hours per week of doctor stuff. … Read more