Wednesday, 14 March 2012

Update on latest chemotherapy session

On Monday I received the second of the six planned infusions of Doxorubicin. I decided not to post for a couple of days so I could get a better feeling for how the side effects from this cycle compared to the last.

Overall I have had fewer side effects this time around. I've been feeling nauseous and as of this afternoon I have also developed some abdominal discomfort/pain. Both of these effects are milder than at the same time in the last cycle however. Hopefully by the weekend I should be starting to get back to normal. I’ve read a few horror stories from other LMS patients receiving Doxorubicin so I really have to be very pleased with how well I seem to be tolerating it so far.

I have an echocardiogram scheduled for Monday next week to monitor my heart function. Doxorubicin is cardiotoxic so regular checks on heart function are a common safety precaution used during treatment though a recent scientific study has questioned the value provided by this form of monitoring. I’m not expecting the scan to reveal any problems as I don’t have any symptoms that could indicate a problem though if there is one thing I have learnt over the last year it is never to take the outcome of medical tests for granted! 

The cardiotoxicity of Doxorubicin means that there is a maximum recommended lifetime dose; generally this dose limits patients to having only one course of treatment which is unfortunate for those whose tumours prove to be responsive to it.

After I had the chemotherapy on Monday Katie and I had lunch at Brasserie Blanc in Bristol and very nice it was too! If you are in the area and are looking for a good value, good quality meal then you can't really go wrong there; £11.50 for two courses from a small but interesting menu. I've eaten there several times over the last eighteen months and everything I've tried has been good or excellent.

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