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First chemo

After trials, tribulations, and postponements I finally got my date, and went into hospital on Monday this week, as planned. There was still plenty of snow around, so we decided that it would be safer to get a professional driver to take me. Stuart, the taxi driver, was great. He drove sensibly in the conditions and I never had a moment’s worry.

I’ll try to remember accurately, but my memory of these events might not be perfect. Please forgive any errors of fact. They are the fault of my memory, not faults in what took place.

After being clerked in, the first order of business was pre-hydration, on a drip, overnight. In other words a litre of saline was pumped into my blood stream, and I had to monitor how much I urinated. I still had an infection that wasn’t quite clear, so only two of the three chemotherapy drugs that I normally expect to have would be given me.

On Tuesday, my birthday, the cisplatin drip started, preceded by an injection to help me cope with the sickness. I also started taking various pills to help with the sickness. These worked extremely well, and I hardly had any bad moments from that point on. After the cisplatin drip was finished, there were two other drips, with potassium and sodium salts, to help my kidneys cope. It was a very long process indeed, and I was glad I hadn’t tried to compress it into a single day. Some people do. I don’t know how.

I found it very difficult to sleep on Tuesday night, partly because there was a crisis in the bed next to mine, and partly because I was just not at all sleepy. The experience of that night is one of the most important I have ever had in my life, and I want to describe it more fully in a separate post.

On Wednesday the pump for the 5-FU was fitted, and I was sent home in an ambulance. Paul and Martin were great company on the drive home, and we had a lot of fun. The whole of Wednesday was great fun, in fact, something that surprised me greatly, but pleased me a lot. What a pity it turned out to be chemically-induced fun! Nevertheless, I want to try to remember how that day felt. It was a good feeling at the time, and I’d love to be able to recapture it for every cycle start. I was happy to talk with people, both staff and patients, and have fun conversations with anyone. I think other people enjoyed my company too. It was a lovely feeling, and well worth the attempt to recapture.

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  1. […] weeks ago I started my first cycle of chemotherapy. The original plan was that I should have started the second cycle today, but last week my […]