Xeloda, Week 1

I've had my first 1-week round of Xeloda.  We are doing it on an an every-other-week basis, since Dr. Bouncy went to a conference wherein a specialist claimed that this resulted in fewer side effects (or less intense ones, I'm not sure) and similar results cancer-wise.

So far, I've found that the joint/muscle/bone pain, weakness, and fatigue are pretty (cripplingly) intense, that the gastro-intestinal upset is moderate, and that I am already getting some hand/foot syndrome symptoms.  On the other hand, I don't have the overall feeling of being really sick and miserable that I had with the Gemzar, and I don't have the depression - which of itself is very hard for me to deal with.  So on the whole, if the symptoms don't get significantly worse (ha, ha), I think I prefer the Xeloda to the Gemzar.

I am currently at a moderate dosage - 3,000mg.  Dr. Bouncy started me at 4,000, but when I asked about the high dosage, given my history with drugs in general and chemo drugs specifically, he lowered the dosage right away.  I don't know what the side effect level is at which they decide to try a lower dose.  I will be talking to a nurse practitioner next Monday, and will ask her about that.

It will be another couple weeks before we know if the Xeloda is doing anything to shrink the tumors... and even then, we'll just be using the blood markers as a guesstimate.  I won't be able to have another scan until the beginning of January - that will be the real test.

So for now, it's mostly hope that is holding things together... not the hope of a cure, but the hope that things will stay stable or get a little bit better, so that I can hold on long enough to meet and enjoy my new granddaughter, who is due in February.  Wish me luck!


soren2go said...

I so admire your courage. Our oldest son is facing a soon-to-be-made decision about abdominal lymph node surgery versus chemotherapy for testicular cancer. He's already had one surgery. Reading your updates and another friend's updates encourages me to know that he can get through the treatment and on to healing.
I send hugs and blessings for your day.

The Violet Hoarder said...

L U C K!!
Absolutely, hold on for that granddaughter--and all of the rest of us who care about you...

krex said...

I am hoping for the best for you in the chose between feeling lousy and feeling a little less lousy . This is my week off so feel free to email if you have the energy . I'm hoping the grand baby will get to see you and cuddle in some of your lovely hand knit items .


Anonymous said...

Checking in on you, dear Eileen. I will keep my fingers and toes crossed and all that in hope that this new regimen will bring relief and kick some cancer b&*t. I danced a little yesterday and thought of you the whole time.
Love and hugs,

Nancy K. said...

I am so sorry to hear that you are dealing with such pain. Isn't there anything that they can give you to ease the discomfort? I keep hearing about all the wonderful advancements that have been made in pain control ~ why aren't they helping you?

If you'd like, I'll call Dr. Bouncy and tell him he better straighten up his act!!!

(VERY)gentle hugs...