Skip to content

Weekly status

Since the last status report most of the things I reported as a downside have improved, which is pleasing. The biggest problem was that I was being sick most mornings, and things got much worse on Monday morning. I was prescribed Cyclizine instead of Metoclopramide, which helped a little, and then on Wednesday at my weekly meeting with the oncologist I also spoke with a symptom control specialist, who prescribed Haloperidol, which is normally an anti-psychotic drug but is also used in low doses to help control nausea. That has definitely helped, and I am no longer being sick, although I do have to be careful that I take the Cyclizine on time or I will feel sick.

I’ve been eating better, partly I think because I am not suffering from so much nausea. A nice consequence eating more has been that I have gained a surprising amount of weight. I weighed 11st 8lb this morning, an increase of six pounds in the week. I don’t believe all of that is true body weight, though. Some of it must be because I have replaced the contents of my gut, I’m sure. To cap it all, I’ve finally got rid of the constipation that had been bothering me since I started taking morphine before the chemotherapy started. Phew!

There has also been very little pain from my cancer, so I reduced my morphine intake once again, and am now taking only 10mg per day. I see no reason at the moment why I shouldn’t come entirely off the morphine this week. I have had some niggly pains which are probably related more to the chemotherapy than to the cancer. For example, my teeth feel very sharp, and so I have a sore mouth where I’ve caught my tongue and the inside of my cheek on them. The skin on my thumb has split, and is taking a long time to heal. Split fingers and a sore mouth seem to be common complaints associated with the chemotherapy, so I suppose I must expect something of this sort. Finally, just to add injury to insult, I’ve pulled a muscle in my back which is simply annoying. I think that happened when I shovelled the snow that fell this week. (Of course, that I was able to shovel snow is another good sign :))

Another niggly thing has been the sniffles, which haven’t improved. Worse, I have been blowing my nose so often, and the lining of my nose has been thinned by the chemo drug, which has resulted in some spectacular nosebleeds. The worst lasted 45 minutes, which was a little worrying at the time. None of the others since has been so bad, which is a relief.

I think that a combination of the reduced morphine levels and the sniffly nose has made it harder for me to sleep well. Even that has improved towards the end of the week, but I would prefer to get a little more sleep this coming week.

To finish on a high note, I have finished taking the photographs which were the second half of the tasks for my project. I’m extremely pleased with them, although I haven’t heard anything from my collaborator. I do expect to find out what he thinks later on this week. I’m sure he’ll be pleased too.

To summarize, although I was quite sick at the start of the week, most of the things that were bothering me have improved, leaving only a few niggles. I’m much stronger, which meant that I could clear the heavy snow that fell, and my photographic project is going well. A good week.

{ 10 } Comments

  1. Seonaid Teal | 21 February 2010 at 9:32 pm | Permalink

    Pleased you’re feeling better and I hope next week goes well. I liked the photos. Its always good to see what other people find interesting enough to capture. Best wishes.

  2. icyjumbo | 21 February 2010 at 9:53 pm | Permalink

    Thanks, Seonaid. I’m sure it will. Cycle 3 starts on Thursday, and I’m looking forward to it.

  3. Ryan DeRamos | 22 February 2010 at 8:53 am | Permalink

    It’s great you are gaining weight! (Even though multiplying by 14 to understand stone mass isn’t my strong suit. LOL)

    In any case: Are the sniffles sinus-related? Would a Neti pot/saline solution wash work, or would that interfere with the treatment? (Though if you’ve never used one before, it might be relatively disgusting at first…so that might not help with the nausea issue.)

  4. icyjumbo | 22 February 2010 at 3:13 pm | Permalink

    Sorry about the arcane units. They are just what we use in the UK, and nobody thinks twice about it. 11st 8ob is 162lb, just so you don’t have to do the multiplication.

    Actually the sniffles are a side-effect of the chemo drugs, I’m afraid. They also thin the lining of the nose, and they reduce the platelet count, all of which contribute to more and longer nosebleeds. Those chemo drugs are extremely powerful, and their effects are unfortunately not limited to attacking the tumour. Not a lot I can do about that, I’m afraid.

    I do actually have a Neti pot, but it’s hard to use it because of that thin nose-lining problem. The pot’s spout tends to scrape the inside of my nose and make it bleed, which is definitely counter productive 🙁

  5. Hugh W | 22 February 2010 at 5:01 pm | Permalink

    Good to hear you are feeling better. I have just been catching up with your posts as we have come back from a holiday. I love the photos, it was quite a shock to the system to come back to snow!

  6. icyjumbo | 22 February 2010 at 5:37 pm | Permalink

    Glad you like the photos. I have to say, it was a shock to the system just shovelling the damned stuff. Three times, now. And more forecast tomorrow too! Hmph.

    Did you have a good holiday?

  7. John | 23 February 2010 at 11:09 am | Permalink


    I saw Nick and Sue Peeling at the Splash this morning. They were delighted to have bumped into you at the Library yesterday and found you in very good form. I was so pleased to hear that you a
    were out and about again. It must be very uplifting to get some respite between the Chemo bouts and be reminded what you can look forward to.

    best wishes to you and, of course, to Gillian. Give her my love.


  8. icyjumbo | 23 February 2010 at 11:40 am | Permalink

    I think I was equally delighted to run into them. We talked about how different the effort to be sociable is, now that we no longer have a daily job to go to.

    As for the respite between chemo bouts, there is no “between” in fact, as I have a 24 hour pump attached to me all day every day. But respite from nausea is wonderful. I love being able to do what I like with hardly any crimp from the illness.

  9. Dave | 23 February 2010 at 10:41 pm | Permalink

    Thanks for the link Chris. Interesting Blog. I hope your health problem is resolved as soon as possible.

    May I recommend my friend Sue’s Blog for a look? It may be of interes to your readers.

  10. icyjumbo | 24 February 2010 at 4:06 pm | Permalink

    My cousin David Wenk told me about your photoblog after you went on a couple of walks with him. I’m trying to add local bloggers to my blogroll, and I loved the photos of the B29, so I definitely wanted to add your blog. I’ve also added Sue’s World to my Cancer Blogroll. Thanks for pointing me at her site.