Saturday, December 25, 2010

More Chemo Side Effects Report to Onc

While visiting my Onc this past Thursday, we talked about a few other side effects I was experiencing. My feet are swelling up. He and the trials nurse wanted to have a close look at my feet and I felt bad for them as they pulled my compression socks off and back on. They got a bit of a work out doing that. The Onc then said … oh this isn’t too bad … how are your shoes fitting … I said they’re not. I can only wear my runners now and even they are bruising my ankles. I guess some Boxing Week shopping is in order.

Another thing we talked about was my tender mouth and difficulty swallowing. I was thinking it was due to the fact that I had a stuffy nose, I tended to breathe more through my mouth which seemed to dry everything out. The Onc said that my tender mouth and difficulty swallowing are known side effects of Brivanib. The nurse asked if I had any sores in my mouth and I said no … it was just sensitive to things like toothpaste, pop, certain foods, and hot and cold.

I also mentioned I was hearing strange sounds in my ears but chemo brain here missed what they said about that. I’ll ask again next week.


Jerry Carlin said...

Daria, I rinsed my mouth with a bit of salt and bicarbinate of soda three times a day and never got a mouth sore. Also there are toothpastes and mouth creams for dry mouth, I forgot their names, but they helped a lot also.
Merry Christmas!

Lisa said...

Merry Christmas Daria. I got some REALLY nasty mouth sores after my first chemo. Luckily I had armed myself with some "goodies" beforehand thanks to my dentist. My mouth was so sore I couldn't even brush my teeth, so I used a liquid rinse I bought from the dentist office for $10. It doesn't require a prescription & won't be able to be reimbursed for it, but it's EXCELLENT for removing plaque when you can't brush. It's called CHLORHEXselectRINSE #1. The main writing on the bottle is "Perioplus, alcohol free non-staining antimicrobial oral hygiene maintenance rinse". 250ml bottle. My dentist told me you can buy it at drug stores but their variety WILL STAIN YOUR TEETH so you need the stuff from a dentist. Works great.

You can also get a prescription for a rinse that totally numbs your mouth. Your dentist or Dr. can do it, it's called TANTUM ORAL RINSE. You rinse with it and it TOTALLY NUMBS your mouth. It apparently works so well that my dentist told me to wait half an hour after rinsing with it before eating. It numbs your mouth so much that you could seriously injure yourself (with your teeth!) because you can't feel anything when you're eating. It may help especially at night I'm thinking.

And, finally what I use almost every day after chemo (first 2 weeks) is another prescription from my onc, called NYSTATIN. It's a rinse, but can also be swallowed. I'm supposed to rinse & swallow it - everyone gets different directions depending on their needs. You can use it many times a day (4-7). It works really well, but it apparently works better BEFORE you start feeling symptoms in your mouth but I don't always do that. It helps clear things up. I've had to use it quite a bit this year. Has a banana type flavor and isn't yukky. None of these are bad tasting I don't think, although I haven't had to use the numbing stuff yet.

Hope this helps....but you may have all this "stuff" already!

My dentist did say that plain warm water and salt is very important too. Hurts...but it works.

Hope you have a great Christmas, despite all these side effects you're having to deal with. It sucks royally doesn't it? FN cancer.

thanks for writing regularly...I have to get my act in gear and write an update :)

Lisa said...

Hi Daria...Merry Christmas. Sorry to hear you are having so much pain with your mouth. I've had problems this year too and have found some good solutions.

From your dentist: a rinse that really helps get plaque off your teeth when it hurts to brush - CHLORHEXselect RINSE #1. It's an alcohol-free non-staining antimicrobial oral hygiene maintenance rinse. Works GREAT. You can't get a prescrip. for it but you just buy it from them. Mine charges me 10 bucks and it's worth every cent. Make sure you get a little measuring cup with it :)

Also from your dentist (or Dr.)- Tantum Oral Rinse. It totally numbs your mouth and throat if you gargle with it. May be a solution just to get you through the day. My dentist warned me this is really strong and I should wait at least half an hour before eating because I could seriously bite myself badly...that's how numb it makes you! I haven't had to use it yet but have some on-hand.

Next, one I've used a lot this year is NYSTATIN. A rinse you can get a prescrip from your Dr. for. Mine tells me to start rinsing with it BEFORE I feel any sores starting. You can use it 4-7 times/day I believe and you can also swallow it (if they prescribe that you do). I've found it works REALLY well. Has a banana taste I think.

Plain salt and warm water is always recommended by my dentist but I find it really helps to use something that doesn't HURT when you rinse with it!!

Sorry you're in so much pain and having to go through this. It sucks royally. Sending prayers your way.

Bernie said...

Sorry to hear of more side effects, although mouth sores are quite common it doesn't help any knowing you are suffering. I do think Lisa has some good suggestions, perhaps you could check with your trial nurse and dentist. Hoping you were able to enjoy Christmas dinner.....:-)Hugs