Daughter's doctor visit.

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Date Joined Jul 2003
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   Posted 7/9/2008 3:52 PM (GMT -7)   
As I suspected the Xeloda was not doing much.  The good news is that nothing went downhill while she was on it.  She will have a port put in on Friday and next week begin three weeks on and one week off Avastin.  If her insurance will pay for Abraxane she will have it once every four weeks.  If insurance won't pay she will get Taxol.  I read on the internet about these drugs and none of them sound like they are easy, altho the doctor told her they didn't have side effects like Xeloda?  Anyone around who can help?
The transfusions last week took her hemoglobin up from 7.1 to 10.4! 
Hugs and prayers for all of you,

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Date Joined Oct 2004
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   Posted 7/10/2008 9:34 AM (GMT -7)   
I'm so sorry she is continuing to have this struggle.  Glad the transfusions helped, though.  She must feel better after having them.
I had Taxotere, which I believe is a version of Taxol.  It wasn't horrible for me.  But then, the whole chemo regimen I had wasn't that bad, considering what others have gone through.  The worst I had it was 2-3 days of feeling very tired and nauseous.  But the meds helped with that.  I got 4 treatments of this after I had already received 4 treatments of a combo, so I had already lost my hair.  By this time, though, it had started to grow back in a little.  I hope she is fortunate to not have very severe side effects.
L & H,

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Date Joined Jun 2005
Total Posts : 349
   Posted 7/10/2008 3:33 PM (GMT -7)   
I, too, had AC and 12 treatments of Taxol. And, I, too, had little trouble with the medicine. Lost some weight and another negative with Taxol was that while the Adriamycin and Cytoxin got my hair, the Taxol got eye lashes and brows. Have some "stencils" and liquid eye liner handy if this what they use!!!
I wish you and she luck. My daughter, too, is a BC survivor, so I know first hand how this is effecting Mom. I really believe it was harder for me dealing with her than for myself.
P>S> I had only one week of questionable blood work a 9ish I believe. They recommended a shot, but i chose to eat a little liver and spinnach and that brought it up. If she likes these foods, maybe she can eat one of those once a week to see if she can stay above 10. 

Post Edited (JUJU8872) : 7/10/2008 4:36:49 PM (GMT-6)

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Date Joined Jul 2003
Total Posts : 68
   Posted 7/11/2008 5:00 AM (GMT -7)   

Hi MK - of course you knew I could comment as I've literally taken them all. . . Xeloda has been doing a serios number on my nails, so we stopped it week.  This week I took Herceptin and Abraxane.  The possible difficulities with Abraxane can be some bone pan and fatigue ( will sleep ALOT this weekend), some taste changes that pass, hair loss (x6 for me) but that is about it.  A couple of years ago it did give me incredible dry eyes which effected my vision but when I stopped, vision came back fine.  It's definitely doable.  Tell her to hang in there and never giver up. I celebrated 11 years on this earth last month and am thankful for every day.

I have retired effective 06/01 and got my teacher's disability and my social security approval about a month after applying. First check comes in October. I will get my remaining teacher checks through August so all is well.  Feeling much better since stopping Ixempra!

Will check in soon.  Hugs

Jackie (retired - bandlady)

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   Posted 7/12/2008 5:32 AM (GMT -7)   
Jackie, it is always good to see your post. You have been through it all! I remember when you had the bone marrow transplant way back when??? Eleven years and you really had serious odds to beat! Carolyn still looks good and acts good. They tell her at the onc clinic she looks too good to have cancer. The onc told her her hair would thin but she shouldn't lose it. I bought her a Wrangler ball cap for her birthday that says "I'm not too tough to wear pink!" I know it is for a man but believe me Carolyn is tougher than a man. The only thing we have to deal with from her is a bad mood when someone tries to help her!!! She had a port put in yesterday and everyone offered to take her, but no she went alone. Then they made her call her husband to come get her so she wouldn't drive home alone. He got there, they wheeled her out and put her in his car. He drove across the parking lot to her car and she got in it and drove home. Last night when the medication wore off her port was hurting her. Stubborn????

You take care of yourself. I am glad to hear you can relax and not worry about working anymore. Take it easy and get some good books.

Love and hugs,

PS To the others that posted, I appreciate your input, too!! I will keep you all posted on how she is doing.

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Date Joined Jul 2003
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   Posted 7/13/2008 10:54 AM (GMT -7)   
MK, I will keep Carolyn and all of you in my prayers. I wonder where she gets her ornriness from?????? =O) LOL.

Love and Hugs,
  It's only when we truly know and understand that we have a limited time on earth -- and that we have no way of knowing when our time is up, we will then begin to live each day to the fullest, as if it was the only one we had.
Elisabeth Kubler Ross

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Date Joined Jul 2003
Total Posts : 2044
   Posted 7/13/2008 7:51 PM (GMT -7)   
Mary Kay, my heart aches for what you and your daughter are going through. Know that prayers and comforting thoughts are always coming your way. Hugs, Lauri

Dxed 04/11/1996
"Go confidently into the direction of your dreams. Live the life you always imagined" Thoreau
Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away.

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Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 688
   Posted 7/17/2008 7:42 PM (GMT -7)   
Mary Kay

My heart goes out to your family for what you are going thru, I will say an extra pray for all of you.

L&H Bernadette

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Date Joined Jul 2003
Total Posts : 2272
   Posted 7/18/2008 10:24 AM (GMT -7)   
MK, add me to the list of those who have broken hearts over this. Just remember our Deb here beat bone mets a long long time ago, so I am hoping that Carolyn can have the same positive experience.


Veteran Member

Date Joined Jan 2004
Total Posts : 693
   Posted 7/21/2008 1:47 PM (GMT -7)   
Dear MK.
I am really sorry to read this about Carolyn.
I did both Xeloda and Abraxane. I had a rough time with the Xeloda too. I wanted to quit it so many times.
As far as the Abraxane goes, the problems I had were diarreah and joint pain. It made me feel like the Tin Man and I needed to be oiled at my ankles when I got up in the morning or got out of the car on a long car ride. But once I started moving it got better.
I took Immodium with my breakfast every morning and ate a bland diet to help with the other problem.
There was the hair loss too, but that was expected.

I will tell you that my onc said that the worst of the side effects that you read about from Taxol and Taxotere are from the Cremaphore that is used to dissolve the medicine. Abraxane is Taxol in its purest form and it is wrapped in albumin so it goes through the system right to the cancer without causing as much harm to your body as the other two Taxanes do.
With Taxol and Taxotere you have to get premeds of steroids and Benadryl and the infusion can take over three hours. Abraxane takes only 31 minutes because there is no need for premeds.

My insurance would only pay for Taxol, BUT since I had an allergic reaction to the Benadryl of all things, they had to give me the Abraxane.

There are studies that show that Arbaxane works better than Taxol so if Carolyn should have an allergic reaction or something that resembles an allergic reaction to the Taxol - if you get my drift - the insurance HAS to pay for the Abraxane. Something that resembles an allergic reaction would be difficulty breathing and complaining loudly that you are feeling quite ill, etc. Heck, we gotta do what we gotta do.

I had the Abraxane weekly and it was much easier on me because of that.

Here is one news result on a study of the superiority of Abraxane to Taxol:


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Date Joined Jul 2003
Total Posts : 2921
   Posted 7/22/2008 6:37 AM (GMT -7)   
Thanks to all who share their knowledge. Lori I really hadn't thought about Deb, I keep thinking of Joanie because she had bone marrow mets which Carolyn has, too. Jessie thanks for the info about Abraxane. It is really interesting. Her insurance is paying for it, so she is getting weekly treatments, too. Three weeks one and one off. My initial post said she was doing it once every four weeks and Avastin is the one she gets then. She is doing well, so she says. She hates it when we call and ask, so you have to wiggle the question in another conversation. She is so tough! Hugs MK

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