My Ovacome
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Memory Lose

Hi everyone

Has anybody had problems with memory lose? I'm only 50 and since I had my op in July last year and had 6 chemo taxol/carboplatin, which I finished at the end of Dec 2011, my memory has been terrible, people tell me things and I swear blind they didn't tell me. The other day I was hunting high and low for my repeat prescription, I could have sworn I picked it up from the Chemist, and when I rang them they said I hadn't picked them up, they were still there. This is very worrying, I used to have a really demanding job, and was as sharp as a button. But now I feel like I'm in a chemo fog that won't clear, has anyone else had this problem?

Luv u all


13 Replies

Yes - very much so! You are so accurate in your description; I've had situations where I would have confidently put my house on having said or done something; but I hadn't!

It does get better - slowly- I finished treatment in July 2009. So far it has not come completely right - and it might be that I have simply got used to managing it.

My GP says that after the surgery, chemo, etc one is unlikely to get fully back to pre-cancer levels of functioning. I would add that the immense trauma caused by the shock of treatment and fear of remission is also very likely to add to memory loss and disruption. I am also aware that I am so much more conscious of every shortcoming I have now- the ever-present question persists just under the surface (is this a manifestation of recurrence?) and that applies to each ache, pain and inability to do or remember anything.

Best wishes,



Yes, yes, yes! I forget everything, people's names, words I was very familiar with, what I went into town for, whether I turned off the cooker, three times I have found hot plates still on hours after I finished cooking and last week I forgot to turn off the garden hose and flooded the lane. Chemo brain is a common phenomenon, it does improve though it never completely gets better. I make a joke of it but I did finally retire, from my much loved retirement job of running an outreach advice centre, last year.



If you type in chemo brain into the search box at the top, you may find some comfort! Good luck

Wendy xx


Yes to all of the above. It's lovingly called chemo brain but we actually have btain damage from the chemo. Like you I had a demanding job as an academic and was part way through a phd now I try to remember what I was about to do most of the time :).




Thank you ladies, I thought it was just me ! names for people I just cant remember and like Didy people tell me something and he presto its gone, I'm going to try the search box for chemo brain,hope it gives me some hope, thats if I remember !!! Love Sue x


Thanks so much ladies for starting this conversation. I hadn't really thought about it much but I am aware now that I have become a little forgetful. Particularly remembering names. I've returned to work and I have to say that has helped sharpen up my mind no end. I also commit every appointment and reminder to my I-Phone which has become my brain extension these days.

At least now I can explain to people I have a chemo-brain! lol xx


oh it's reassuring to know it's not just me, I find that my mind wonders quite a lot as well, when I'm trying to watch a TV programme I suddenly realise I've missed a big chunk, even thought I've been sitting there looking at the TV. I didn't know it was associated with chemo, so that means I'll get worse when next lot starts then, I'll have to put little notes around the house as prompts ha ha x


Hi all

Thank you I'm glad it's not just me starting with early dementia, I will look at the search box you have asked me to look at.

Luv you all



Hi Just found this web page on Cancer Research, very interesting reading I couldn't believe it, it actually used the words that I put in my blog, before I knew about this "Chemo Fog".

Thank goodeness its not just me going mad.

Lol Didy



Chemo bran does exist it is a medical fact. We have had discussions on this forum about it in the past. I think all of those around us chemo patients just live with the quirky things we say and the fact we are always misplacing things, we have to laugh, if not we will cry !!

Love Anna xx


Definitely exists. My sister asked me to pick her children up from school for her yesterday and had to give me the details so many times before it sunk in. Now I'm not so sure who is most anxious. Me worrying about my oc or my sister leaving her normally highly organised sister (me) picking up her children.

I had chemo brain last time and it sharpened right up when I returned to work. However I'm back to full blown chemo brain at the moment with this round of chemo. Things will improve though. Good luck


Hallelujah!!! I have been like this since my chemo in 2010 and I am so fed up with people saying "it's your age". I KNOW IT'S NOT!! I also had a very busy multitask job which I was very good at. I have returned to work part time and we have had yet another takeover so the work is not so intense and I am managing with the help of lots of post it notes and diary reminders and it's working. However, since the new firm took over we have too many people in our office and the work is sparse (no redundancies on the horizon yet) including the temp who covered me when I was off having treatment. Last week I had my appraisal and guess what ladies? Looks like my boss is trying to take away my job and move me to more menial tasks like filing and scanning. No complaints about my work just a change in the office apparantly. All done in the nicest possible way of course.........they don't want to overload/stress me. My boss never wanted me to return part time but had no choice.

Love and hugs Chris x x



I just remembered after I had my operation before I started chemo, I asked the surgeon if I could return to work he asked me what I did.......( I worked in a museum taking school children around and telling them about history)......

he said yes you might suffer some memory loss though...... I have finished work now... "I had a recurrence".... But my guess is loss of memory is normal ....we all have a new "normal" now lol

All The Best xx Gwyneth xx


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