Radiation+Xeloda - Side Effects

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autumn735
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Joined: Sun Nov 17, 2013 12:36 pm
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Location: Utah

Radiation+Xeloda - Side Effects

Postby autumn735 » Wed Nov 27, 2013 11:09 am

I just started radiation and Xeloda this week. I have 4-field radiation 5 days a week and take Xeloda on radiation days. I'm on day 3 and overall I feel okay; a little nauseous and a little tired, but nothing too bad. No hand or foot issues so far and no skin issues on the pelvis where I receive the radiation...yey. I assume some of this has a little later onset, but I'm hoping to hear from others who have been through the same or similar treatment who can tell me about their side effects (i.e. what did you experience, when did it start, did it get worse over time, etc.).

Thanks in advance for any input!
Colonoscopy - 10/2013
dx Rectal Cancer-11/14/13 - T2N1Mx - Stage IIIa
Xeloda+Rad-11/2013 (28 treatments)
Surgery/Temp Ileo-3/26/14 restaged to IIIb (4 pos. nodes)
FOLFOX began 4/23/14

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Rob in PA
Posts: 1998
Joined: Wed Dec 09, 2009 9:16 pm
Location: Pennsylvania

Re: Radiation+Xeloda - Side Effects

Postby Rob in PA » Wed Nov 27, 2013 11:17 am

It gets worse towards the end. And when I say "worse" that doesn't necessarily mean "painful", just more uncomfortable. Sore bum, fatigue, and I had a little bit of hand foot issues. But after about 4 weeks from the end it started to dissipate. I had great response when I did the Xeloda plus radiation.

Good luck

Rob
dx 11/07 crc IIIb @ 39
Xelox/Rad/ temp colostomy
LAR/J-pouch/ temp ileo
Folfox-8
Failed reversal
2/09 liver mets; liver resect/ileo reversal
Folfiri/Avastin - 12
2/11 5 lung mets
Folfiri/Avastin 2011
SBRT 3/12
Lung met 5/13/ said NO to more chemo
SBRT 8/13
2 lung mets 5/14, VATS 8/14, NED

LabLover
Posts: 65
Joined: Tue Sep 24, 2013 7:50 pm

Re: Radiation+Xeloda - Side Effects

Postby LabLover » Wed Nov 27, 2013 11:36 am

Radiation is definitely cumulative. I didn't really have any affects until 4 plus weeks into treatment or so. Mostly burning when using the bathroom, but there are creams and such that can make a difference.

I didn't have any issues with xeloda. No nausea, hand foot, mouth sores, etc the entire 5 weeks.

Wanted to add that I was diagnosed stage III rectal cancer, and when I had surgery last month I had a complete pathological response to chemo/radiation. No cancer in tumor or lymph nodes (26 taken). So I'm extremely grateful for chemo/radiation :D

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Guinevere
Posts: 3358
Joined: Tue Oct 11, 2011 4:19 pm
Location: NE TX

Re: Radiation+Xeloda - Side Effects

Postby Guinevere » Wed Nov 27, 2013 12:25 pm

As has been said, the radiation is cumulative and, towards the end, can be painful. They can give you a cream to apply to your bottom that does help. If you start having trouble with burning, let us know and we can give you tips to get through it.
Xeloda, the effects are cumulative as well. At first, I didn't have any problems. Then, it was nausea (get he onc to prescribe Phenergan and/or Zofran), diarrhea (tell your onc - they will probably say Imodium but, if that doesn't work, Zofran is pretty good at stopping it OR the onc can give you a script for Lotmotil which is atropine in pill form) and I got horrible bone pain. However, I was on Xeloda that time for 7 days a week until the next to the last week of treatment and then it was 6 days a week with one day of rest. Also, things got to where they would either stink (liquid fabric softener, iceberg lettuce, and other weird stuff) OR they didn't taste right. Some people can eat tolerate highly spiced or hot foods. It's very individual so it's hard to compare. Fatigue is a booger as well.
Just be sure your onc know about all your side effects. You're not bothering them and not being whiny when you do. I wish you the best of luck and hope you have Rob in Pa's experience which sounds relatively easy.

God bless ~
Guinevere
Hrt atk - Feb 11
CRC4 DX - Apr 11
APR liver rsct, procto - Jul 11
Folfox/Avastin - Sep 11
Xeliri - Nov 11
Iritux - Jun 12
Break - Jan - Mar 13
Iritux - Mar 13
Stivarga - Aug 13
Folfiri - Oct 13
Exhausted treatment options - May 14

Cj51
Posts: 892
Joined: Thu May 13, 2010 5:58 pm
Location: Midwest

Re: Radiation+Xeloda - Side Effects

Postby Cj51 » Wed Nov 27, 2013 1:24 pm

I strongly suggest you drop Weissoccermom a PM and ask her to send you her document on this subject, ESPECIALLY if you are female. If you do a search on her posts, you will get some very good information.

Thanks to Jayne for her willingness to share all of the information she's gathered on this subject. I wish I'd have known it all before I started!

Cj
DX Stage IIIb RC, T3N1M0, April 2010, 51
6 wks Xelox/rad 6/10
resection, temp illeostomy 8/10 Complete response!
12 rounds FOLFOX for clean up 9/10, Allergic to Oxi, started Xeloda only 12/10
Ileo takedown 9/28/11
10/15 NED

kmv
Posts: 64
Joined: Fri Aug 02, 2013 6:56 pm

Re: Radiation+Xeloda - Side Effects

Postby kmv » Wed Nov 27, 2013 2:42 pm

I have just finished 27 out of 28 treatments. I am doing radiation with xeloda five days per week. I have tolerated the treatments very well. My side effects have changed somewhat throughout my treatment, but the worst has been itching in the entire area, especially my vagina. I developed an awful yeast infection, which made it much worse than it needed to be. I also have hemorrhoids and some blistering of the skin. Pain has been mild. No diarrhea.

Some tips - start taking care of th area now, before you start feeling uncomfortable. I take either a regular bath or a sitz bath twice a day using Aveeno oatmeal or Domebro astringent soaks. After soaking for 15 min, I apply copious amounts of aquaphor and cocoa butter. I apply cocoa butter all over the area (vagina to the top of the butt crack) first, then use aquaphor, including inside the anus. My doctor gave me a prescription for proctofoam, which really helped when my anus was getting sore. After using twice a day for a couple of weeks, I'm barely sore at all. I also followed a low residue diet but not very strictly. Drink tons of water. I will start using vaginal dilators and doing other pelvic rehab in a few weeks.

Keep in mind that a lot depends on where your tumor is located and the dose you are receiving, so my experience won't necessarily be similar to yours. There is a lot of conflicting advice out there about what to do, including how to minimize impact on sexual function. I am choosing to listen to my doctors advice, and it has worked for me so far.

I hated going to treatments every day, and felt humiliated by having to stick my bare ass in the air. But I did get used to it, and got through it (almost). Just grit your teeth and be strong - it won't last forever and could save your life!

Good luck,
Katie
39 yo mother of 3
7/29/13 dx rc six wk postpartum, met to liver
10/9/13 finished 2 cycles FOLFOX
12/2/13 finished chemorad
1/3/14 liver resect
2/28/14 APR
7/16/14 finished 4 cycles FOLFOX
7/28/14 CT scan NED
10/27/14 CT scan 3 lung lesions
2/15 finished 4 cycles FOLFIRI
4/15 VATS on right lung
four mets in left lung, 2nd VATS on 5/21/15

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chemo sabe
Posts: 444
Joined: Fri Mar 09, 2012 9:01 pm

Re: Radiation+Xeloda - Side Effects

Postby chemo sabe » Wed Nov 27, 2013 3:33 pm

Radiation seems to be different for everyone. I believe the reason is that we are all different and although a 28 radiation day treatment is standard of care for most rectal cancer patients, our bodies are all different. As I told you last week, The amount of radiation or the power needed to get to your tumor is calculated and is based on how much tissue and bone must be penetrated to get to your tumor. If you have more tissue and bigger bones, they are going to increase the power to get to the tumor. I bought a variety of creams/lotions but found I did not need any of them. My second or third week of treatment, I had a replacement Radiologist (mine was on vacation). Speaking to him, he looked at my information and stated that the radiation level I was getting was not going to cause any burns. So I believe your radiologist should be able to tell you that much up front.

I did have other problems though. The biggest was the loss of bladder capacity. It is about an hour drive to work and there were times I was one red light away from not making it to the office or home dry. The ride home was somewhat easier with a truck stop available about 20 minutes from home. That all fixed itself after the radiation stopped. Long term, somewhere between the radiation and a lot of chemo, my bone density was affected. I fell this summer and literally broke my butt (multiple fractures of the sacrum). I had a lot of pain off and on but did not know about the fractures till a scan this fall and then it was healed up. I then did a month of physical therapy and all the pain vanished. (I worked every day during radiation. The xeloda did dry out the skin on my hands though. I used a lot of hand cream and got through it in pretty good shape.

(I had more skin problems during my post-surgery adjuvant chemo but you must consider that was 6 months of chemo, not 28 days.)
64 year old male
Diagnosed Stage 3 Rectal Cancer - T3N1M0 - Oct 2011
28 radiation treatments with xeloda
Colon resection with ileostomy Feb 2012
8 Rounds of Xelox completed Sept 2012
Ileostomy reversal surgery Oct 2012
Incisional Hernia Repair Nov 2013

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Patience
Posts: 834
Joined: Fri Dec 09, 2011 10:26 am

Re: Radiation+Xeloda - Side Effects

Postby Patience » Thu Nov 28, 2013 3:55 am

For discussion on Xeloda, see this thread:
viewtopic.php?f=1&t=43901

Xeloda (just like other treatments) is not without potential problems. That thread gives some useful links.
"Sweet dreams till sunbeams find you.
Sweet dreams that leave all worries behind you."

seasnail
Posts: 144
Joined: Sat Aug 17, 2013 5:42 pm

Re: Radiation+Xeloda - Side Effects

Postby seasnail » Thu Nov 28, 2013 5:13 am

This just randomly popped into my head after scrolling through the thread: when we spoke to our Radiologist, he suggested that my dh's bladder be 'comfortably' full when he comes in. Like he should drink a glass of water before treatment. The reasoning is that when the bladder is full, it's puffed out and out of the way from the radiation beams. If it's empty, it's saggy and can get in the way and be hit, thus causing (unnecessary) pain and discomfort there. It's very late here, so it was said in more eloquent terms...but that's all I can seem to spit out right now. :)
Caregiver to dh
Diagnosed 8/13 stage IV 3 liver mets 1 lobe age 46
8 rds Folfiri/Avastin/5FU 9/13-12/13
Rad 1/14 (28 days) w/ADAPT
Surgery 5/1/14 temp ileo
5/13/14 pathology, complete response in liver
6/14 ADAPT for next 1.5-3 years
7/14 clean scan
9/2/14 ileo reversal
12/14, 2/15, 7/15 clean scans, fingers crossed!

Coppercent
Posts: 262
Joined: Thu Feb 23, 2012 4:00 pm

Re: Radiation+Xeloda - Side Effects

Postby Coppercent » Thu Nov 28, 2013 8:33 am

Just remember everyone is different. My radiation oncologist gave me a list of things to do to prevent side effects and I started them before radiation and continued them for a few weeks after. Listen to your doctor he/she will have great suggestions. Towards the end I got lazy in drinking the lemon water but when the pain started I jumped back on my daily drinks and the pain immediately went away. Except for that couple of days I didn't have any side effects. I chose to have my radiation treatments right after work for convenience. Good luck!
07/15/11 Stage III Rectal, 08/11 - 09/11 Chemo/rad 11/11 LAR - Whole rectum gone, ostomy, hysterectomy
01/12 Port placed, 01/12 thru 06/12 Folfox, Xelox 10/03/12 Reversal, Clear scan
And then the story continues.
Currently, remission round two!

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O Stoma Mia
Posts: 1600
Joined: Sat Jun 22, 2013 6:29 am

Re: Radiation+Xeloda - Side Effects

Postby O Stoma Mia » Fri Nov 29, 2013 1:29 am

autumn735 wrote:...I just started radiation and Xeloda this week. I have 4-field radiation 5 days a week and take Xeloda on radiation days.... I'm hoping to hear from others who have been through the same or similar treatment who can tell me about their side effects (i.e. what did you experience, when did it start, did it get worse over time, etc...

    I had 5 weeks of radiation adjuvant therapy with Xeloda (half dose) which started one month after my colon surgery. The major side effect for me was intense fatigue. Sometimes I would fall asleep in the late afternoon, miss my evening dose of Xeloda, and then wake up the next morning.

    Here are some links for side effects that can be expected during Xeloda chemo/rad treatment. If they gave you a copy of the Xeloda patient information booklet, you should read it and try to set up a system for tracking your side effects, week by week, so that you have something to show your doctor when you meet with him.

  • Xeloda side effects
    http://www.drugs.com/sfx/xeloda-side-effects.html
    http://chemocare.com/chemotherapy/drug-info/Xeloda.aspx

  • Radiation side effects
    Radiation Therapy Side Effects and Ways to Manage Them
    .
  • Side effects log -
    _MON____TUE_____WED____THU____FRI_____SAT____SUN__
    .AM PM...AM PM....AM PM...AM PM...AM PM....AM PM...AM PM.
    |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| Diarrhea
    |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| Vomiting
    |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| Nausea
    |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| Mouth Sores
    |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| Hand-and-foot syndrome (HFS)
    |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| Fever or infection
    |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| Stomach area pain
    |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| Pain (other)
    |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| Fatigue
    |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| Constipation
    |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| Loss of appetite
    |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| Dehydration
    |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| Skin problems
    |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| Hair loss
    |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| Dizziness
    |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| Headache
    |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| Insomnia
    |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| Taste problems
    |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...|
    |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| [Radiation-related problems]
    |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| Trouble swallowing
    |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| Urinary and bladder changes
    |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| Radiation burns; proctitis
    |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| etc.
    |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...|
    |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...|
    |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...| |...|...|
    .
  • Medications for each side effect - For each of the major expected side effects, you should have a plan for treating the side effect at three possible levels of intensity, for example:

    1. Mild level - Home remedies or over-the-counter preparations
    2. Moderate level - Mild prescription medications or over-the-counter preparations
    3. Severe level - Strong prescription medications

    It would help to have the options identified in advance at these three levels for each major type of side effect (and approved by your doctor), although it may not be necessary to purchase everthing in advance. Some products may be hard to find, so it may be wise to do some research in advance to determine where you are going to obtain the products in case you ever need them.

    As noted earlier by kmv and others, it is important to start treating the problems early, as soon as they start to appear. There is a reason for this: Under chemo/radiation therapy the immune system becomes somewhat compromised and a bit dysfunctional. It takes a bit longer for medications and treatments to take effect, so you need to start the treatments early, at the first sign of a problem. If you decide to wait until the problem becomes almost unbearable, then this might be a bit too late for your immune system to step in, catch up, and quickly solve the problem. In a way, there is no point in taking a 'macho' approach by trying to be a hero by toughing it out. Now is the time when your body needs tender loving care by giving it some form of treatment whenever something starts going wrong.


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