Thursday, September 14, 2017

Update to Chemo, Steroids, and Weight Gain



Went and saw my oncologist this past Tuesday before getting my 48th treatment of Pemetrexed (Brand name Alimta). I had just had a CAT scan done last week and was awaiting the results. Happily I am still in total remission and I was so happy that I forgot all the questions I wanted to ask my doctor about the steroids.

Good news is I had lost 2 pounds from my previous visit. There was no mention about my blood test until I asked the oncology nurse (not the same nurse I saw my previous visit). She said my blood work came back from that morning and it was 8.0, which is a good count apparently as I had taken my steroids for two days previous to the blood work being done. I did tell her that when I had an A1C blood test done to measure my glucose over the past 3 months it was 6.3. Her reply was, oh that’s good. 

Rather than question her I left it alone.

My oncologist after telling me the great results of the CAT scan stood with his hands on his hips saying to me, “I don’t know what we’re going to do with you. You’re such a unique case, but we can’t keep giving you chemo forever.”

My reply to him was, “Well we skip a month and make it chemo every 2 months.”

“No I’m afraid we cannot do it that way, but I can give you breaks. I’ll see you back in November.”

I was thinking to myself that maybe they have to keep me on once a month in order for the Ontario Health Plan to pay for the chemo I’m receiving.  Stupid me, didn’t ask.

Wednesday morning I get a call from the dietician that was supposed to come see me on Tuesday but never did. She apologized that she was very busy and couldn’t get to me. 

 I explained to her that I had gained 70 pounds and it was starting to affect my knees and back. Her answer to me was well we just want you to maintain your weight and I see here that you lost 2 pounds from your previous visit in August. She asks me if I get much exercise and my answer to her is I try to walk but get out of breath quite easily. Just walking up the stairs from the main level of my house or down to the basement winds me. I do walk around malls, and try to get out and get in smaller walks than the marathons I used to due pre cancer. 

I told her that I’d taken pictures of my dinners for the past couple of weeks to show her what I eat. I’m trying to cut back on the carbs and usually have a salad, protein, and veggies for dinner.  Her answer to that was, “Low Carb diets don’t work.”

They sure have for me in the past and I will continue to watch my carb intake.  


Anyways to make a long story short or shorter the dietician is sending me out some pamphlets to look at that may help me. She said that she’d see me in November at my next oncology, chemo appointment. 
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