This past Thursday, I got the Herceptin but no Taxotere, to give my GI (gastrointestinal) track a rest.
Next week, I will resume the Taxotere, but in a lower dose. Hopefully, the lower dose will resolve, or at least dramatically reduce, the GI upset (read: diarrhea).
The previous week, I took Loperamide (Imodium) almost daily to resolve the upset. It worked, but it would be better not to have any stomach upset. Apparently, in addition to the dangers of dehydration, there is some risk of infection associated with diarrhea.
I guess I expected this week to pass smoothly without the Taxotere. Unfortunately, this morning (day 3) I had an upset stomach again. I immediately took two Loperamide tablets.
I really feel rather sorry for myself about the upset stomach thing.
Isn't it funny the things that bother us?
Meanwhile, the neuropathy caused by the Taxol seems to have disappeared from my feet. I am not sure what is happening with my hands. My right hand feels ok, but my left hand feels sluggish. I cannot tell whether it is leftover neuropathy caused by the Taxol, or new neuropathy caused by the Taxotere. I think it is getting worse, which makes me think it is the latter.
With the Taxol, my fingers felt "pudgy." Now the whole hand just feels like it is not working right, like it is "slow" or "sleepy."
I think there is something wrong with my sense of touch.
In addition to the loss of dexterity, especially in my left hand, I have also lost strength in my hands (both of them). I still find it difficult to open bottles and often need to ask for help.
It took over two weeks for the cuts on my tongue to heal after I stopped the Taxol. The sensation has returned, though much milder. I drank lemonade and the acid did not make my tongue burn.
So far, none of these symptoms is enough to stop the Taxotere.
Meanwhile, I just submitted a request to the kupah (health fund) for a PET scan (PET CT). It has been six months since we last did a full scan to see what is going on inside my body.
Please daven (or send happy, healing thoughts) for RivkA bat Teirtzel.
With love and optimism,
more observations from the USA (Chicago day 4-5)
16 hours ago