Will new chemo make lymphoedema worse: I have to start... - LSN


4,702 members2,211 posts

Will new chemo make lymphoedema worse


I have to start Chemotherapy for a Breast Cancer recurrence and the drug regime is T.C. The Docetaxol (taxotere) part has edema listed as a side effect as well as nerve damage.

Has anyone had chemo since developing lymphoedema and did it make it worse?

I'm considering asking for other drug options have do not have those side effects.

4 Replies

Taxols can make lymphoedema worse but hopefully the effect is transient. Best to discuss this with your oncology team and lymph clinic.

I had a slight problem with lymphedema before chemo and it has become much worse. Working thru it. But will probably have to go off the abraxane soon. A bit scary since my breast cancer is metastatic. But quality of life matters!

YouToo in reply to fchrist

I’m so sorry to hear you are having such problems. It’s bad enough to have cancer but when the treatment can leave you with permanent pain and swelling it just feels like the world is out to get you.

I’m in the middle of radiotherapy now and am worried about the extra damage that will cause to the brachial plexus too. I need to have 33 sessions and over 30 is considered high risk for lasting damage. It’s hard to think that an extra 3 sessions will either kill the cancer that surgery missed or damage the nerves or both. Seems to be no middle ground.

Of course if my lymphoedema gets worse the radiotherapist can blame the chemo and oncologist can blame the radiotherapy or both can say it’s pre existing condition.

fchrist in reply to YouToo

I’m so sorry about the radiotherapy. It’s funny, that one scares me more than the chemo. “Luckily” it isn’t helpful for my tumors, so none for me. My husband had non-hodgkins lymphoma and went thru chemo and less than half of his radiation and is still fine after 7 years. But non-hodgkins is a very treatable cancer. He is a nuclear engineer and couldn’t continue knowing all the damage it does.

I am thankful that I went 18 rounds (6 months) so far with the abraxane and it was quite successful.

I am still researching what might help. Someone mentioned a ginger oil they rub on that has helped them. I find hypericum 6c from Boiron 2d helps a bit. Definitely the compression socks. I would love to try a compression machine!

Best wishes to you,


You may also like...