Thursday, May 26, 2011

The First Chemo Experience

Thought I should describe what having chemo therapy is like. At the hospital they call it an infusion. Anna & I went to the infusion room at around 7:oo am and were prep'ed for Anna's first infusion. It's basically an iv that they use to 'infuse' someone with the various chemicals used to fight the cancer. We met the infusion nurse, Britney, and sat down and relaxed. The room was pretty big with about 7 or 8 other chairs around the perimeter for other patients.

Britney talked with us about what was about to happen and asked us multiple times if we had any questions. She then started and iv in Anna's arm. Anna HATES iv's (she hasn't had good luck with them in the past). This time wasn't much different; she needed to be poked twice. The doctor thinks they will be able to give her the infusions through an iv rather than have to insert a picc line or a port. This is mainly because Anna will be going in about every two weeks. Some of the people we met there have chemo treatments multiple times a week and need an 'easier route' to get the drugs in them.

They started Anna on steroid and an anti-nausea medicine before they started the two chemicals. Anna's first chemical was a bright red color, our nurse described it as looking like 'fruit punch', and it did. The next chemical was clear and needed to drip for a little over an hour and then she was done.

The whole process took about 3.5 hours and was pretty relaxed. People would trickle in throughout the morning and get set up for their infusion, some people would lay there wrapped in warm blankets and others would read or just visit with friends & family. One lady totally set up shop and it seemed like she was at work with her lap-top out and making phone calls. All told the actual treatment itself wasn't too bad.

That night Anna started to feel a little sick with a headache and body aches. As the night wore on she felt more and more (?), she said it's hard to describe. It's not like really feeling sick...maybe 'yuck' would be a good description. All told this first experience with chemo kinda sucks.


  1. I have no idea what it must feel like. Anything like the morning sickness yucks? It sounds awful and I feel for you. Hope by now you are perking back up for a while before the next round. Hang in there

  2. Anna, I just linked over from Mark's facebook post. I hadn't heard the news. My thoughts and prayers are with you! Hang in there girl, you're a tough cookie so I know you can beat this!!
    Jami (Brklacich) Anderton

  3. It seemed to me like a continual 24 hour flu for the first few days after :/ Round one down!!!! Yipee!!! Maybe you guys should eat m and m's for a count down each day until you are done. I am still wondering which wig? Love you all!

  4. Love you and thinking of you...even the kids are checking out the blog updates!