My worst chemo day so far -- major grump time

My worst chemo day so far -- major grump time

Sorry its a grump blog. Those ladies nervous about chemo may wish to not read on. Its not nasty I promise-- just a great example of how things don't always go to plan which has happened today in spades.

This is now officially my worst chemo day ever. I thought last week was bad with 8 attempts to get cannula in...

Although we managed the cannula today, they then missed the inter-peritoneal port totally and pumped in almost three quarters of a litre of saline into the subcutaneous layer instead. It was horribly painful as needle was in only partway and crooked to boot but firmly clamped in that painful situ with tape. 3 Tramadol just about dulled it to bearability.

Once we realised the problem I have been walking around trying to disperse and massage away a melon-sized squishy protruberance that made everyone I met do a triple take including the nurses...

We just now managed to have second successful attempt and the taxol is now flowing in, after having to repeat the premeds. It took me pointing out that a different position to give them a flat hip surface on which to work, instead of me sitting up and them going in sidewards, could make a big difference in terms of judging what get needle in "straight" might mean. It did - straight in, no pain.

After that I then do the undignified slooshing phase of "Heath Robinsonesque" bed tippage and rolling for 2 hours after. Apparently I now need to go onto the MALE chemo ward for this as the unit is closing for the day soon. And manage it myself as the nurses there don't know what to do. Oh joy.

So much for this being the shorter of the two sessions...been in since 10, won't be out til at least 9 <sigh> It did work, not nurses fault, as they are learning all the time on the IP front, but OMG I want this %}#€ing process over now.

And to cap it all I can't now collect my new kitten tonight as planned :( not happy at all about that either! On the basis that cats improve all post I have added pic of said kitten, still in RSPCA jail. Luckily they did their suitability visit yesterday and described our home officially as "pussy heaven." Husband v proud and has put on Facebook -- of course.

Sue x

33 Replies

  • Dear Sue, what a horrible day, but how well you seem to have coped with it. I hope your next session will be problem-free and that in the mean time you get your kitten.

    I should have my weekly go on Friday, if my bloods are ok, and as usual I dread it - but so it goes.

    Best of luck,


  • <sigh>

    Each time I think' at least I know what to expect now..." Then, a curveball. Mind you this one takes the biscuit...

    Thanks for the kind words xx

  • What a miserable day for you. Hope you have lots of cosseting lined up for when you get home.

    The kitten looks gorgeous and she's going to provide great entertainment to take your mind off all the stuff you're having to endure. (Somehow, I always think of cats as 'she'!)

    Thinking of you

    Linda xx

  • Dear Sue, I am so sorry you have been put through this. It's bad enough having chemo, without it going as badly as this. I do hope it goes better next time and that you can soon pick up your beautiful little kitten. That will be guaranteed to make you feel more cosseted. :-) Big hugs to you

    Love Wendy xx

  • Hi Sue, Lets hope your day soon ends and you can get home and relax. Got to say you have had a c***p day, but once you pick up you Kitten you will have something else to think about, My granddaughter got a new kitten a couple of weeks ago and although I am not a cat lover he is great and bring a lot of joy to her.

    Do you have a name for your new kitten if not maybe we could all suggest names and you can pick the one you like.

    Love Babs x x x

    PS My suggestions Rosie for a girl, Teddy for a boy

  • I do not! Suggestions welcome. Am strong believer that one must let cat personality dictate name. Try them out for size and fit, kind of thing Husband however arbitrarily changed one such carefully evolved moniker to "Bob" which unfortunately stuck fast. So what the end is for this one, who knows...!



  • I agree with your approach to cat's names. Mine is called Mincer.

  • It's a girl by the way!!

  • When I was growing up we had a cat which my brother called Rover and he trained her to fetch. The poor cat had a real identity crisis. The name that popped into my mind when I saw your kitten was Polly.

  • Hi Sue ,Hope your home now and relaxing,I think your lovely kitten looks like a Sally.

    Best wishes Sue xx

  • 9.30 - still here, legs in the air, another hour+ to go :-(

  • Oh No....what a nightmare :-( sending you love and best wishes and a good nights sleep zzzzzzzz :-/ ;-) x G x

  • Dear Sue

    What an awful day for you, but as usual you sound very upbeat about it. Just hope you're not there too much longer. Make sure you have a day of pampering tomorrow.

    I'm so sorry you weren't able to pick up your new kitten this evening, he/she looks adorable and I'm sure they will love their new 'pussy heaven' home.

    Take care

    Love Linda xx

  • 14.5 hours, finally home, zzzzzzzzzz

  • What a horrible day. Thank goodness it's over! Another one down. Sleep well!

    The kitten is too sweet - awww.

    Monique x

  • Sorry Sue!

    I must have a filthy mind but "pussy heaven" raised some very improper images for me! What rotten luck with the chemo! And there was me thinkng that a peri port might be easier and more effective than trying to find a vein for the canula!

    Love the kitten (though not a cat person myself) but are there not infection risks while on chemo? I once taught a boy whose mother had picked up toxicara from their cat in pregnancy and he was seriously visually impaired! Do be careful!

    Surely an RSPCA rescue centre is hardly "jail" my friend Wendy has rehomed numerous dogs from them and speaks very highly of them!

    Anyway! Good luck with the rest of the treatment! Hopefully you are home and comfortable now!

    Love M!

  • Thanks Margaret! I've woken feeling v battered and bruised and will try to be taking it easy today (I am hoping you did too, after your traumatic clinic day?). I just hope my swelly belly, now at gargantuan proportions, will go down fast as the body absorbs all the fluid and, er, allows me to get rid...

    Yes that description was totally priceless, was it not?! Neither the lovely assessor nor the rehome lady who phoned to tell me it was all ok to proceed had ANY idea, I don't think. The Facebook comments from my husband's chef mates are filthy, they have no shame :-0

    I know it's not jail really - these women who do the interim homing are incredible and well set up by the RSPCA, I was v impressed. Just want kitty home!

    I am careful though - I am banned from litter tray duty while on chemo, and have a tub of plastic gloves, anti-bac wipes and doggy bags easily to hand for quick clean ups and sealed disposal as I have one incontinent older cat, and so also keep flash wiping table surfaces! Planning is everything...!

  • Dear Sue

    I wouldn't worry about having pets in the home whilst having chemotherapy. I have a cat and a dog and if anything they were a positive force during the chemotherapy months as they were such good company.

    All my animals have been rescued and have passed through the Animal Refuge. It's not home for them but it's clean and they're cared for as well as possible.

    I don't dare go back to the dog home - I'd come home with half a dozen.

    The name I'd chose for a beautiful little black and white kitchen is Seren. It means star in Welsh. White star in the black sky.

    I'm looking forward to hearing the name you finally hit on.

    Hope today goes much better for you.

    love Annie xxx

  • I am not allowed to visit the dogs homes, banned by husband years back when it became clear I would also adopt puppies in a heartbeat. One is enough, apparently. Go figure...

  • Should have known you'ld be prepared!

    My clinic day was not bad just long drawn out! Sod's law said every time I switched the kindle on I was called in!

    Now those "Cheffy" facebook comments are playing havoc with my imagination!

    Enjoy your kitten!

    Love M! Xxxxxxxx

  • Sorry you had such an awful day Sue. I hope you'll be able to rest up properly today. The kitten is adorable. I once read that cats are tranquillisers on four legs, they certainly have that effect on me.

    Love & best wishes

    Mary xxx

  • Yes... except when on mad streak maybe. I have 2 Maine Coones (which are enormous) which, despite being grown, will still suddenly burst into room and climb the curtains in under a millisecond. Or jump down from a really high shelf (they love being as high as poss) in the downstairs loo making a huge thud, and make you fall off! Don't laugh, it actually happened. But ... I think I love the madness and humour of that as much as the stroky, purry, relaxing bit...

  • Forgive me for laughing at your husband's pride in your home being a 'pussy heaven'.

    My imagination has gone into overdrive!!!!

    Will post later with loads of sympathy and tea. xxx

  • Hi

    Didnt read it all but had my 24th Chemo yesterday and believe me I was so pleased.After the first dose 5-6 attempts with the canular and my veins I thought This is going to be a big problem having it weekly so I decided ti have a Hickman LIne Best thing slice slice bread.

    the procedure was painless you can have a choice of 2 lines it was the less fiddly to maintain. Yes it is a reminder that you have the cancer, but It has been great, so easy for everyone to get the bloods and having the treatment. It takes all the pressure off you and the nurses, somehow they seem to to think it a challenge to try to put the canular in. The beauty of all, this is it is that the overall treatment is much quicker and you can go home much sooner I dont have one regret and when it comes out should I need it in the future I wont hesitate. My story on this is positive know that they will be others on this who have not had a happy experience. This is something you can try if you dont like it it can be taken out. I know quietly that the staff are very relived I had it done we have all had the pressure taken off.

    Hope this helps good luck with the treatment. I wont tell you what day I had yesterday I think someone was thinking its OC day lets give them something to think about!!!

    Regards Barbara

  • Oh dear about your day too then... Sympathies for whatever happened.xxxx

    Cannula not the prob yesterday, ironically, but portacath disasters - though they won't now put a line in anyway for IV as I only have a couple more sessions left so procedure wouldn't be funded... If have to have more in future though I WILL because I really have problems now.

  • Hi sue - I completely sympathise and identify with your long long day! I had one session with a similar number of attempts to access the port and a consequently very delayed day. I hadn't t realised how much slower the IP chemo is because they drip it in using gravity rather than an IV pump. I have just had my port out this week so am taking it easy as rather sore and bruised. I think my next challenge will be returning to work! Lots of redundancies looming after Christmas - interesting times!

    Lynn x

  • Is it just me or does it feel more like a chunk of rigid green garden hose inside instead of small soft flexible tube they describe?

    Congrats on getting rid of yours darling -- now your poor bruised insides can start to recover (and you can start doing your deep abdominal exercises if your post op too -- just found out we are supposed to do these as well as pelvic floors... too painful with portacath, I tried it)



  • I did feel, sometimes, when bending down, that the end of the pipe was sticking into me somewhere and that feeling has definitely gone - thank goodness! Now I have completed treatment - I am going to concentrate on eating well, exercising and recovering! So keep going - you will get there. I just kept telling myself that soaking any remaining cells in chemo was good even though uncomfortable at the time!

    All the best!

    Lynn x

  • Thank you ALL for these supportive comments, I really was mis yesterday. Must now keep moving and massaging to let body get rid of the big flobby yuckness that is my belly full of saline but kitten (who has totally stolen my thunder anyway) will no doubt help on that front!



  • What an awful day Sue. It's a nightmare when they can't get the cannula in, but it was disaster after disaster for poor you. Hope you recover real soon.

    I love your kitten. I, too, am an animal fanatic and would take home every pet in the rescue centres if I could, but am content to just mind/walk my son and daughter's dogs. I do have a chinchilla, who is so cute, but earlier this week she managed to jump up the chimney over our gas fire (I had forgotten to put the safety gate back in place). It was panic stations (the fire was not lit by the way!) and hubby had started dismantling the fire in an attempt to get her out when her little head appeared and she jumped out. Needless to say I was very relieved, but the gas fire is a mess!! :) :)

    Take care

    Love Colette xxxxxxxxx

  • I will, thank you!

    What a nightmare! Funnily enough I have been worried about our chimneys re kitten... Am now borrowing a giant kitty pen to pop her in at night for a couple of weeks which will also stop other cats bullying her. It's like having a new baby!


  • Poor you - I am a bit late to the blog so hopefully you are feeling a bit better by now. My first chemo went ok but I will be having a PICC line put in next week. I love your adorable kitten and the thought of those 2 large kitties gambling about jumping off high shelves, what is it about cats and high places. My adoptee insists on lying on my hip in bed whenever I lie on my side, but due to hot flushes gets thrown off in my desire to cool down but always comes back! I love having her and she is enjoying having me at home.

    Take care of you xx

  • I know that hot cat blanket feeling well... Also midnight flying cat phenomenon when need to suddenly ditch it! Am getting there. Feeling bloody awful today but will no doubt recover...! Thanks Madz


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