Many have asked about my chemo treatment plan so I wanted to make a post with what I learned today.
I am having a type of chemo called Cisplatin. The purpose of this treatment is to slow or stop the growth of cancer cells in my body, which allows the radiation to work better. Cisplatin is given through an IV with a lot of fluids and medication. The fluids and medication are administered slowly over 3 - 4 hours to help protect my kidneys as much as possible and to minimize initial side effects. I will also be sent home with three oral medications that are all for nausea and vomiting. My nurse said these medications will not alleviate all side effects, but will make me feel much better than I would without them. I'm not sure how comforting that is, but time will tell. The side effects of this type of chemo are not delayed and are expected to show their ugly head within the first 24 hours post treatment.
Common side effects are:
Severe nausea and vomiting
Low blood counts
Gradual hair loss
Loss of appetite - foods may have a metallic taste
Less common side effects are:
Numbness or tingling in the fingers or toes
Ringing in the ears
Burning when urinating
Here is a link if you are someone that wants to more details. http://www.cisplatin.org/effects.htm
People using the drugs found in Cisplatin are particularly susceptible to certain infections, including infections by microorganisms that do not often infect people with a normal immune system. Radiation also weakens the immune system so we are trying to be very careful not to expose ourselves to illness.
This all sounds so enjoyable doesn't it? Honestly, I know that I won't feel well, but at the same time I am very focused on the other side of this. Being well again and having the energy and strength I need to play with my kids and make many more memories with family and friends. I know there are lessons to be learned in this journey and I'm documenting as many as I can so I don't miss the purpose in the midst of the hardship.
So many of you are good to share words of encouragement with me each week and I hope to pass a few of these on for others needing a pick me up.
Psalms 94:19 "When doubts filled my mind, your comfort gave me renewed hope and cheer."
Psalm 77:14 "You are the God who performs miracles; you display your power among the peoples."
Matthew 4:23 "Jesus went throughout Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the good news of the kingdom, and healing every disease and sickness among the people."