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Posted by: catnip ( )
Date: July 23, 2018 02:24AM

Despite faithfully slathering myself with California Baby Cream and other emollients, I have developed a rash from the radiation that itches like the fiends from Hell. I will be asking for a prescription anti-itch cream first thing tomorrow.

They gave me a gel at the clinic that has Aquaphor, Lidocaine, and Aloe Vera in it, but it isn't nearly powerful enough. OTC Hydrocortisone isn't cutting it, either.

Final day will be August 1, and it can't come too soon.

I am evidently more of a wimp than those of you who breezed through it. :(

I keep telling myself that cancer sucks way more than radiation, but when the itching wakes me out of a sound sleep, I don't always believe myself.

(OK - Whine over!)

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Posted by: captainklutz ( )
Date: July 23, 2018 03:09AM

Best wishes going forward, Catnip!

Have you tried Benadryl ointment? I used to get hives and Benadryl was about the only thing that kept them under control...they didn't have the ointment then.

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Posted by: Amyjo ( )
Date: July 23, 2018 05:33AM

You'll notice the continuing effects from radiation up to 2-3 weeks following week 5. That's when the skin peels while it's slowly recovering, kind of like what happens from too much sun.

You're not a wimp, catnip. You've gotten this far, you're nearly there.

((((hugs!))))

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Posted by: Amyjo ( )
Date: July 23, 2018 05:37AM

Are you able to take Benadryl for the rash?

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Posted by: Nightingale ( )
Date: July 23, 2018 11:48AM

Just a quick word to say it's not absolute that the skin will peel. It varies from person to person. So while it's good to know the array of possible side effects of any treatment, for one's information, no need to dread that each of them is going to happen in one's own individual case.

A close relative went through it last summer and we used the Aveeno products, as mentioned below. She didn't get any skin effects from the (16) treatments. It has a lot to do, of course, with one's physical make-up, not only which cream or other substance is used.

Just saying that catnip doesn't have to necessarily worry about peeling. May or may not happen.

All the best for the week, catnip.

PS: You're breezing through it as far as I can see, catnip. No wimping evident either. So glad you can talk to us. Please don't hesitate. No judgement attached. We'll do the countdown to the finish with you. Look forward to a day of celebration that it's done!



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 07/23/2018 11:52AM by Nightingale.

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Posted by: Amyjo ( )
Date: July 23, 2018 03:44PM

16 treatments is app three weeks of rad. The skin begins to peel following 4-5 weeks of rad. It continues peeling following for at least 2-3 more weeks. 3 weeks isn't going to have the same effect. Catnip is having the same dose of radiation I had. There would be something wrong with her treatment if she does not blister and peel. The docs said it is expected.

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Posted by: Nightingale ( )
Date: July 23, 2018 03:58PM

Edited to remove a diversion.

I'm just saying that it's not absolutely exact science how each patient will react to certain treatments.

I was making the point that medical therapy is not always completely exact and the same from patient to patient.


To catnip: I totally sympathize with the itching problem. It is truly unbearable when that happens. I hope they can find something for you that will stop it. Someone suggested to ask for something to help with sleep, if they think that's appropriate. Then you could be itchy and not know it. :)

All the very best.



Edited 3 time(s). Last edit at 07/23/2018 04:50PM by Nightingale.

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Posted by: Amyjo ( )
Date: July 23, 2018 05:02PM

What isn't absolute science is still predictable outcomes.

I wasn't surprised when I peeled like a sunburn because I'd been forewarned. It is normal and expected according to the physicians.

Catnip has six weeks of radiation. I had four, with the caveat that mine was the same dose as six weeks truncated into four weeks.

It is exhausting, but the reason is life saving. Which justifies the cons of the treatment. As my doctors told me "We're fighting cancer." The benefits outweigh the downside.

Catnip: be prepared for more surprises. It is a big relief once it's over. But then the healing still needs to begin (from the radiation.)

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Posted by: saucie ( )
Date: August 10, 2018 09:51PM

Amyjo Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> 16 treatments is app three weeks of rad. The skin
> begins to peel following 4-5 weeks of rad. It
> continues peeling following for at least 2-3 more
> weeks. 3 weeks isn't going to have the same
> effect. Catnip is having the same dose of
> radiation I had. There would be something wrong
> with her treatment if she does not blister and
> peel. The docs said it is expected.


I had radiation and no one told me my skin would peel or itch,
and it didn't... it didn't even get red.
Don't make pronouncements for other people. You are not an expert.
Every one is different.

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Posted by: Amyjo ( )
Date: August 10, 2018 11:22PM

It wasn't my "pronouncement" I shared with Catnip.

It was the doctors.

And yes, Catnip did get the same blisters that I got along the same timeline as I was on that she shared with us here.

M.Y.O.B. Miss Busybody.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 08/10/2018 11:22PM by Amyjo.

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Posted by: summer ( )
Date: July 23, 2018 10:19AM

I'm sorry, Catnip. :( I don't think your nasty, hurting rash is at all unusual.

Would Aveeno products help at all? I remember when my skin went through a very dry, itchy phase, their colloidal oatmeal products were the only things that would calm it down.

Hopefully stronger prescription products will help. Try to hang in there.

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Posted by: cl2 ( )
Date: July 23, 2018 10:55AM

I haven't found the Benadryl cream to be of much use as I have some for mosquito bites, etc.

I would be a much bigger wimp than you are! I hate things like what you are going through. You can't just "ignore" things like this like many painful things.

Can they give you sleep medicine?

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Posted by: catnip ( )
Date: July 23, 2018 02:06PM

The topical form might be worth trying, however.

Thank you all, for your support!!

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Posted by: cl2 ( )
Date: July 25, 2018 11:51AM

I've always had allergies, though they are much better as I get older for some reason, but this season something is in the air and my dogs carry it around on them. I've had to use it more than I have in years. I can't believe I ever took a full dose. A full dose makes me shaky.

I hope you are doing okay. I hope they helped you find something that would work for you. I need to read the rest of the thread to see if they helped you.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 07/25/2018 11:52AM by cl2.

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Posted by: Amyjo ( )
Date: July 23, 2018 03:46PM

The advantage of Benadryl (capsule or tablet, not topical cream,) is that it doubles as a sleep aid while relieving the effects of a rash. If catnip is able to take it for what she has.

She will need to clear it with her oncology doctor first. :)

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Posted by: Cheryl ( )
Date: July 23, 2018 10:59AM

Good luck.

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Posted by: Devoted Exmo ( )
Date: July 23, 2018 12:14PM

Hang in there. You're nearly at the end!

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Posted by: Beth ( )
Date: July 23, 2018 12:14PM

You, Darling, are not a wimp. You, Darling, are going through some serious shit, and the fiends from hell need to cut the crap.

You, Darling Catnip, are darling. You are strong. You are loved. You are admired.

You. Are. Loved.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 07/23/2018 12:14PM by Beth.

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Posted by: cludgie ( )
Date: July 23, 2018 01:07PM

I'm very sorry you have to go through this. No, you are not a wimp. Radiation is hell. I saw my mother go through it. It was a long time ago, before chemo, and that was what they did. The cure was far worse than the disease in her case.

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Posted by: Aquarius123 ( )
Date: July 23, 2018 02:26PM

(((Catnip)))) You are a trooper. This treatment is miserable. I hope your doctor can prescribe something to knock out the rash and itching. I'm glad you are almost through with this mess.

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Posted by: catnip ( )
Date: July 24, 2018 02:17AM

My buddy, Maurice the Pharmacist, left a message on our phone saying that my doctor had called in an ointment that should not only help with the itching, but prevent infection, since the skin has become blistered and the wee blisters are suppurating.

The conventional undergarment normally worn by adult women is now impossible. It's a very good thing that I am retired. The spaghetti-string tank tops that my daughter gave me some time back are now the only feasible underwear that I can tolerate.

Maurice said that the ointment will be ready to pick up after I'm done with tomorrow's treatment.

Thank you, everybody, for your ongoing support and encouragement. At this stage of my life, my closest friends and relatives have mostly passed on. (With the very fortunate exclusions of two tortie cats and my wonderful DH.) So I am way beyond grateful to have you guys in my corner!!

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Posted by: Amyjo ( )
Date: July 24, 2018 09:25PM

catnip Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> My buddy, Maurice the Pharmacist, left a message
> on our phone saying that my doctor had called in
> an ointment that should not only help with the
> itching, but prevent infection, since the skin has
> become blistered and the wee blisters are
> suppurating.

You're where I was in the last week of treatments. It was just starting, and continued afterwards. The radiology oncologist informed me that it isn't anything to worry about *unless* the blisters start oozing. If they're dry, that's a good sign. It's good your doctor is giving you an anti-infection cream to help stave off something more developing.

>
> The conventional undergarment normally worn by
> adult women is now impossible. It's a very good
> thing that I am retired. The spaghetti-string tank
> tops that my daughter gave me some time back are
> now the only feasible underwear that I can
> tolerate.

You're lucky you're retired. I had to work each day of my treatment. But I was still able to dress comfortably, under the circumstances. :)

> Maurice said that the ointment will be ready to
> pick up after I'm done with tomorrow's treatment.
>

Hope it helps immensely!

>
> Thank you, everybody, for your ongoing support and
> encouragement. At this stage of my life, my
> closest friends and relatives have mostly passed
> on. (With the very fortunate exclusions of two
> tortie cats and my wonderful DH.) So I am way
> beyond grateful to have you guys in my corner!!

This is one very positive experience of RfM. I'm thankful you are here. Best wishes as you near the finishing stages of radiation. Ask about the bell ringing when it's over. Some cancer centers have a bell to ring for when your radiation treatment has ended.

You ring it three times. It's optional of course. But considered a milestone on your road to recovery celebrating the end of treatment.

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Posted by: Susan I/S ( )
Date: July 24, 2018 02:25AM

https://www.amazon.com/Aveeno-Soothing-Treatment-Itchy-Irritated/dp/B000UEAARO/ref=sr_1_4_a_it?ie=UTF8&qid=1532413316&sr=8-4&keywords=oatmeal%2Bbath&th=1

They also have a baby formula that might even be milder. Worth asking the docs and Maurice about? If nothing else, it would be a good excuse to have a nice long soak :)

You are doing GREAT girl!

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Posted by: catnip ( )
Date: July 24, 2018 02:56AM

I'll see how the new prescription works, and will likely keep an eye out for the Aveeno, as well!

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Posted by: kathleen ( )
Date: July 24, 2018 10:46PM

Good luck, our dear Catnip!

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Posted by: BYU Boner ( )
Date: July 24, 2018 11:01PM

Oh Catnip, I’m so sorry you’re experiencing this! Kick that cancer’s butt! Get feeling better, and please accept my deepest well-wishes.

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Posted by: nli4now ( )
Date: July 24, 2018 11:04PM

Sorry that I only read this today been busy and out of the loop for the last month or two. When I had radiation for skin cancer, I am of very fair completion, and it was very hard on me. I did the good fight but my doctor finally insisted on prescribing Silvadine cream for my skin rash and itching. I said to myself yea right like this will help. After the first day of applying as often as needed I asked why had they not insisted sooner. They said they knew I would refuse so now I recommend it to everyone.

Each gram of SILVADENE Cream 1% contains 10 mg of micronized silver sulfadiazine. The cream vehicle consists of white petrolatum, stearyl alcohol, isopropyl myristate, sorbitan monooleate, polyoxyl 40 stearate, propylene glycol, and water, with methylparaben 0.3% as a preservative.

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Posted by: catnip ( )
Date: July 26, 2018 01:01AM

I just picked up the new ointment today. It has sulfa in it, however, and as Maurice pointed out, I have had allergy issues with sulfa drugs in the past.

Saucie, I will look into the Udderly Smooth Cream.

I took a nap after radiation today, and had a funny dream about August 1, the last day of radiation. At my clinic, they give you a certificate of completion - no bell-ringing. Anyway, in the dream, I had gone in on that last day with a cake made at the local in-store bakery, with curlicues in my university colors, with the logo "Thanks for the Mammaries."

However, my radiation oncologist is Chinese-American and doesn't always "get" jokes involving wordplays like that, so maybe it wouldn't be "culturally sensitive."

There will be an even greater reason to celebrate August first - my granddaughter will be SIX whole years old that day!! Her sister's birthday is on the 11th, so Oma here will have to think of some kind of mischief to get into, with her girls.

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Posted by: saucie ( )
Date: July 26, 2018 01:04PM

They gave me a graduation certificate when I completed radiation too. I felt like I deserved it, its a long haul, but then , the cancer treatment is too.

I know exactly how you feel. I'll be so glad for you when its all
over, its like you climbed a mountain and got to the top. Yay.

Try that Udder cream... it couldn't hurt. I wish I would have known about you're going through this earlier so I could have
told you about it. I know that some people get burned so bad by
the radiation they have to stop for a little bit until their skin heals and then start it up again. You're almost done with it, Yay
!!!!!

Let us know how you're doing. Good luck dear.

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Posted by: Amyjo ( )
Date: July 26, 2018 01:18PM

I was given one of those certificates as well, with a big hug from my radiation nurse congratulating me on staying the course.

Not that I was going to miss the rad treatment, but the people there are some of the kindest and most caring people you'll ever meet. (I didn't ring the bell. It was in another section of the hospital, and my car was closer to where I was to get home and take care of my pooch baby.)

Your grandbabies sound much more inviting and something for you to look forward to celebrating birthdays.

Enjoy every moment with them. They're such a blessing.

I was using Aloe Vera gel and some hydro-cortisone cream toward the end of the treatment. It's such a delicate area to begin with. So whatever you use, you'll be sure to be gentle with yourself.

Nor did I realize there are more people here who've been through bc treatment. At my place of worship there are 5-7 women at my table following services each week. Out of us women, four have been through bc treatment. That seems rather high to me, in terms of ratio. But we've become a support group of sorts to each other by virtue of where we happen to be sitting for brunch. :)

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Posted by: Amyjo ( )
Date: July 26, 2018 01:19PM

Catnip, your dream was most vivid. It does sound like a very humorous play on words. :)

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Posted by: Tevai ( )
Date: July 24, 2018 11:44PM

Hope everything today went as well as is possible, catnip.

I am thinking of you.

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Posted by: Cheryl ( )
Date: July 25, 2018 12:11PM

I don't reply that often because of my poor attitude toward this whole ordeal. I hated it. I'd hoped it would go smoothly for you and you wouldn't have the itchy blister problem. I can say this clears up quickly starting immediately when the treatments are done if you can hang in there until then. Hopefully, they'll prescribe something that works well for you. A mild valium type pill might also help. That's what I finally resorted to for the last couple of weeks of treatments.

(My biggest problem is that they would not give me an end date or an estimated number of treatments. That would have helped tremendously.)

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Posted by: Amyjo ( )
Date: July 25, 2018 03:07PM

I got a bad infection between week 3 and 4 on the side receiving radiation.. Was already on an antibiotic for a tooth infection, so they didn't double my prescription but let the other one run its course.

It scared my radiation nurse cause she hadn't seen anything like it before, so naturally it scared the bejeepers out of me. It didn't faze the doctor though. My treatments went on as scheduled.

For me it has been getting used to a "new normal," including since rad treatment.

Just today I began oral surgery for a tooth implant. The surgeon took a tissue sample from the tooth socket to have it tested to make sure that the breast cancer hasn't metasasized to my jaw. He told me it is one of the places it's known to do that. So as I rest at home in pain from a dental procedure I now have the added worry of that. I'm looking forward to the pathology report.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 07/25/2018 04:48PM by Amyjo.

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Posted by: Amyjo ( )
Date: July 25, 2018 06:07PM

My nerve endings remind me I'm alive. ;-)

Mucho preferable to the alternative. Heaven isn't ready for me and hell doesn't want me.

There is still much living left for me here, God willing.

I've never had stitches in my mouth before today, with the oral surgery. I don't know how people get a whole mouthful of dental implants, when one is so much trouble. (And expense!)

Today was just the bone graft. In 4-5 months will get the post in place, where the tooth will fit over. The whole process can take up to a year to complete. If on schedule without complications, I'm looking at six months.



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 07/25/2018 06:10PM by Amyjo.

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Posted by: presleynfactsrock ( )
Date: July 25, 2018 02:45PM

So, so sorry you are going through this......sometimes life just sucks. Sending my best wishes for an end to the skin problems out of hell and also for C in general.

You are brave and strong and amazing.

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Posted by: saucie ( )
Date: July 25, 2018 04:00PM

Catnip... I went through radiation too.... The doctor gave me

Udderly Smooth Cream. It worked so wonderfuly. I never got red

or itchy skin and I was afraid that I might because my skin is

so fair..., think Irish skin. Its wonderful .... good luck to you

Catnip. Let us know how you are doing.

Sending hugs and loves ...
Get that cream.

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Posted by: Lethbridge Reprobate ( )
Date: July 26, 2018 10:23AM

Good luck with this Catnip. Good vibes from this old hippie heading your way. XO

Ronnie

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Posted by: Soft Machine ( )
Date: July 26, 2018 01:07PM


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Posted by: sd ( )
Date: July 26, 2018 03:04PM

I handled the chemo okay. It was the radiation that knocked me on my ass. :(

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Posted by: catnip ( )
Date: July 27, 2018 02:36PM

My Nephrology nurse made herself heard, and said, "Her kidneys are not functional enough to process chemo. It would kill her."

End of discussion. The topic of chemo was off the table. I have always been grateful, because chemo sounded dreadful.

My surgeon cut "extra-wide" margins when she removed the tumor, biopsy showed no infiltration into the lymph nodes, and presumably, the radiation (4 treatments remaining) has presumably wiped out any surviving Cancer Cooties.

I am way past ready to put this stage of my life beyond me.

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Posted by: Dee ( )
Date: July 27, 2018 11:57AM

Rhuli Gel is available again. A chemist friend told me about it years ago. Band Aid bought it and changed its name to Benedryl but they also changed the formula.

Original formula is the only thing that worked for my poison ivy and I'm allergic to mosquitoes. I buy it when ever I see it. Amazon has it. It has camphor I believe. I haven't seen it in stores.

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