Saturday, July 17, 2010

Chemo with a Twist

My BC friend A told me about an article in the Edmonton Journal article entitled, ‘Home Chemotherapy Eases Patients' Anxiety’ where you can have chemo at home. Here is an excerpt from the article …

In February 2009, Dr. Karen King, an oncologist at the Cross Cancer Institute, launched a one-year pilot project to test how patients did after getting chemotherapy treatment while they sat on their own couches or armchairs. Australia has an established program of home chemo and it's also offered in the United Kingdom and France. While there are no rigorous studies on such programs to statistically show patients live longer or do better, researchers have found patients typically want to stay home where they feel much more safe and comfortable.

I guess some of the advantages of having chemo at home include: avoiding some of the anxiety or gastric issues associated with going in for treatment, not having to worry about someone driving you back and forth to the appointment, not having to travel while you are experiencing the ill effects of the chemo and finally, just being home to hold the fort, to take care of children and other family duties.

I had my regular chemo infusion yesterday and I prefer to have it at a medical facility. Go in, get it done and go home. I am fortunate to be in a situation where that works best for me… however, I can certainly understand how under different circumstances I might see it differently.

5 comments:

Brenda said...

I know some people who have chemo at home and I think its a little stressful because the nurse comes and starts the infusion and then you have to wait for the nurse to show up to dispose of everything properly. It seems like an infusion center is a little less stressful because the nurse is there. Also, at an infusion center a nurse is available to monitor side effects.

But for the homebound who do have someone to drive them to infusions, I can see how this would be helpful.

Betty said...

Interesting concept. I'm sure for some having someone come it is the best, but I enjoyed the group setting, the conversations with other patients, the not being alone feeling, and after the first few treatments I was driving myself as the pre-meds were doing their job well. Both options should be available.

Bernie said...

It is a great idea but my concern would be that patients would only stay home without a reason to go out......becoming a hermit wouldn't help anyone and I think that sharing with other cancer patients is important.....I think I would only use this as a last resource but for those who have no choice it is good.....:-) Hugs

Joanie M said...

I suppose it depends on what kind of chemo one is getting. I would be afraid in case something happened during the course f the infusion. I remember going to the cancer center with John and we all had to leave because someone (turned out to be a child) was crashing and they were working on him/her. We all had to reschedule treatment.

Alison D said...

I've had 3 cycles of chemo before my bone marrow transplant. In each case I had the first in hospital to make sure how I reacted and the remaining treatments at home where a nurse stayed throughout. As I had the same nurse throughout the cycle I was able to ask all sorts of questions about my illness which I hadn't been able to ask the doctors.