Weight gain?

Have any of you experienced heavy weight gain following chemo?

I finished last treatment first week of May and have been gaining ever since. I'm eating the same- pretty healthy. My scans were clear about a month ago. CA125 dropped a few more points last week. I am going to bathroom quite regularly. I had ascites at diagnosis and this doesn't feel anything like that. Just feels like I'm getting fat. 😳

Obviously not happy about it. Anyone else experienced post chemo rapid gain?



33 Replies

  • Yep..... never got rid of it either. so decided to be fat and happy that I was alive! So here I am a dress size bigger, still eat healthily etc just cant seem to shift the weight. Was never small so now just chunkier lol. Does it bother me, yes sometimes when I look in the mirror but hey ho. xx

  • Did your weight come on fast? I have gained over 10 pounds in one month. Beginning to worry it's something to be concerned about.

  • Yes it did and tbh if Id only put 10lbs on Id have been happy but Ive put on loads. I put it down to a combination of the op, steroids, chemo and old age ..... Ive tried losing it but sorta given up. My Consultant is not concerned as long as Im well.

  • Hi Anne,

    Me too,I think this disease causes that (the disease that keeps on giving)

    I am trying to address it,but it's hard,so am going to up the excercise,but you have to have the energy to do so.I am nearly 2 1/2 years NED and my onc weighs me every time I see him,it's like the weight watchers from hell😈

    I don't over eat,cake and chocolate is a rare thing,trying to cut down on bread,potatoes,pasta,count calories,but there we are,you are not on your own trust me xx

  • Haha, yes dreading everytime they weigh me!!

  • Next weighin 1st week of July after an all inclusive week in Majorca🤐

    Lol! Xx

  • good luck!!

  • Hi Anne, Yes I believe many of us have the same problem,i think maybe the steroids that you are given when you have chemo do not help. I have found it quite difficult to shift the weight,but so long as we are healthy otherwise,why worry. So pleased that your scans were clear.Onwards & upwards is my motto. Love Caleda.xxx

  • Hi Anne,

    Me too. I have gained about 8 pounds and can't seem to be able to drop it. I try to be active and eat healthy and am trying not to stress over weight too much. It is hard!

  • I did and haven't lost it 😫Will be having more chemo in 2 weeks so time for bigger clothes lol


  • Hi LA . Don't despair - I've had two recurrences and obv more chemo but I never gained further weight during the subsequent chemos. I gained following my op and original chemo, levelled out (if you can call anything about my body level fgs) so hopefully no need for new wardrobe!. Hope your chemo goes ok. xx Kathy xx

  • I'm thinking more exercise after my holiday as cooked breakfast everyday isn't doing me good lol

    The pictures are OMG who is this fatty lol

    LA xx

  • Me too......xxx

  • I did gain. Six months after chemo with weight gain and fatigue my Dr. checked my thyroid and was found to be severely under active. Now on meds for it. Still having problems losing weight.😜 It doesn't bother me like it would have pre cancer. I just glad to be alive.

  • Yes after first line chemo I found I had gained over a stone and a half.

    Mind you as one of my symptoms was not having an appetite and not being able to eat that must have counted towards my weight loss, plus I was followingredients Slimming World before I was diagnosed and thought that I was doing really well!!!

    With chemo I put on a few pounds each session and On my third week (3 weekly taxol/carbo) I became quite ravenous!

    Clare xx

  • Hi Clare- thanks as always for the good feedback. I too couldn't eat enough on steroid days. But my weight was fairly the same throughout chemo- up and down but evened out. The gain has come since finishing chemo. I've cut way back on caories, so I'll give it this week and then reach out to dr's if it continues to go up.

    How are you doing? Has the hospice been able to get your comfortable and better manage your pain? Have you managed to go outside that lovely patio? I think of you often and wish you wellness and comfort dear Clare.

    ❤️ Anne

  • Anne

    I'm still in the hospice with my meds being tweaked. Still have bowel issues but having been given a sleeping pill now each night I am able to sleep which is marvellous.

    Clare xx

  • OMG! YES!! Where has it all come from?? I eat pretty healthily, don't drink, exercise three times a week and walk everywhere. Now I have hernias. But my appetite is still huge. But, as my friends tell me, I'm still alive! Deb xx

  • I keep hearing about hernias and have very odd pains and strange feelings. However I am going to the bathroom regularly now. Any chance you could describe what one feels like? Thanks!!

  • Hi there. Well, I describe mine as 'the alien baby'! Occasionally, they stick out and feel hard and painful, but the rest of the time they're just submerged in the fat above my navel. I'm a bit squeamish, so I don't go prodding them. I'm never quite sure what makes them stick out, so I'm still doing Zumba with no ill-effects, but I've given up weights. Google is not at all helpful, so I may have to make an appointment with my GP - that could take a while! Maybe your GP could reassure you?

  • Hi, well done on finishing your chemo. The weight gain seems to be the norm for us all 😔. I put a stone on during chemo and then carried on with the increase post chemo with a final weigh in of one and a half stones up on original weight pre diagnosis, the only time I'd been this heavy before was during my pregnancies 😔.

    When it was looking like another clothes size increase was needed and my knees were objecting to the weight and as much as I like shopping for clothes as anybody, I decided enough was enough and time to do something about it so I changed my eating habits, I upped my exercise regime (walking, cycling and doing free weights) and I am finally back to my 'normal' weight. I did this with the full support of my medical team.

    It takes quite some time to get energy levels back after chemo so it was nearly 2 years from finishing chemo before I felt ready to do this. I am now 3 years on from diagnoses and 2 1/2 years since finishing chemo and am so very lucky to still be in remission.

    If you're at all worried about the weight you should have it checked out but you are only a month on from finishing chemo so it's still very early days for you. I would concentrate on recovering from the effects of the chemo and getting your energy levels back and enjoy the freedom from the treatment rollercoaster for a little while then think about tackling the weight if you want to. If you feel healthy then that's the most important thing at present. Take care and keep as well as you possibly can ❤️Xx Jane

  • Thanks Jane. Just stressed since I've gained well over 10 pounds in about a month- since chemo ended. I fear at this rate it will be another 10 in a few weeks as it keeps going up despite my trying to eat healthy. Also getting tummy aches that come and go. Argh- i know my scans were clear just a few weeks ago, by mind still wanders.

  • Ok we get it that a combination of steroids, lack of movement and possibly binging have led to our weight gain. But is there anyone there who has successfully lost weight a few months after chemo? I'll start another thread now.

  • Hello Anne, yes is the short answer. I have gained 5 stone over the last 4 years and 2 lots of chemo, second time with additional steroids four pain n relief. I have started trying to do something about it and am happy that I've now lost a stone, another 4 to go ... Ann xx

  • Well done Ann, it's not easy is it? ❤️Xx Jane

  • Another yes here! I gained over two & a half stone during chemo (had been a steady 10 1/2 all my adult life so it was quite a shock!) I found that I could make slimming world work for me and it fits with the advice from Penny Brohn... I lost most of it steadily over a year without doing anything too drastic and without giving up the things I enjoy. I do still need to keep an eye on my weight as seem to put on weight much easier now (finished chemo 4 years ago)....

    I think the combination of steroids, change in eating preferences, fatigue and hormonal changes is a bit of a perfect storm for many of us. So important though to be kind to yourself- finding exercise that suits you and makes you feel happy will help a lot. Best wishes, Sx

  • I also have gained some weight that just does not want to budge. I heard a radio gastroenterologist doctor show that talked about SIBO or small intestine bacterial overgrowth. It is an overgrowth of a certain bacteria that often happens when surgery is done in abdomen and intestines are moved around and manipulated as we all have had. It can cause weight gain without any reasonable cause. He said it is not uncommon. It is treated with a certain a antibiotic that is safe for your body as it passes to treat only the small intestine. Some people actually gain weight after chemo and surgery as it messes with the bacterial colonies in the intestines. different people have different symptoms. some have constipation and weight gain and others have weight loss and diarrhea.

    Xx Carol


  • I to gained 10 pounds.Between steroids,chemo, having my down days where I was tired which caused me to be inactive.Once I was through treatment, I gained more energy.Wore my fitbit and walked my way back up to 10,000 steps gradually back to my 15, 000 or more steps a day.Having had a reocurence, I had to do it all again.Now I am struggling to get a few pounds off, but consider this may be a good thing, because if I was 10 pounds lighter,my cancer would be back again.Weight loss and bloating.I was my symtoms for reoccurance. Good luck.Don't stress.Lynn.😆👍💙💙

  • Yes, sadly - I've put on lots of weight since starting 2nd line for recurrence. But my attitude is - dealing with the cancer, treatment, psychological and physical side effects is enough of a challenge without trying to lose weight! And those effects carry on for a good while after chemo ends. After 1st line finished, a really healthy diet, swimming, and yoga helped me feel comfortable in my body again. But it was a good 5 months after finishing chemo that i felt well or motivated enough to do those things. Back in treatment now i just try to put into my body as much healthy stuff as I can - but if Iwant a pizza and a glass of wine I have it & if I'm to exhausted to excersise (that would be most days .........) i try not to beat myself up about it. Hope it's of some comfort that looking at all the comments on your post there are lots of us in the same boat!

  • Also forgot to say I was referred to Mcmillan Active - really good initiative offering 1 to 1 advice from personal trainer, free access to gym, classes, pool etc -- again this was months after treatment finished. If you are interested your nearest McMillan centre will be able to tell you if this is available in your area.

  • Yes!! I finished chemo 5 months ago, and have been struggling ever since! I eat healthily too, but I was thinking there must be something wrong, none of my clothes fit. Defo not acites. I now think it's because I find moving about so difficult - every joint screams at me whenever I try to do anything, so I avoid it whenever possible. Obviously I have slowed down enough to make extra calories hang around....... Have recently started Pilates, I think it might help me get more mobile again, although having been only twice it's killing me atm!!

    Also thinking about Slimming World, it has worked well for me in the past.

  • I feel the same. Have not been moving a lot. So achy and sore. If I gain more weight this week, going to call my onc. It feels like its a few pounds every week now. And it started after I ended chemo so can't blame the steroids. Can't catch a break, can we. 😖 Doesn't feel good and don't fit in my clothes. 😡

  • yes 30 kg in a year since diagnosis.

    estrogen demand by body, steroids and of course, almost complete lack of exercise for most of us. and many still take some sort of meds that can lead to weight gain.

    I've started losing a little now but I'm almost literally starving most days of the week.

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