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“Chemo brain” anyone?

Forums General Melanoma Community “Chemo brain” anyone?

  • Post
    RMcLegal
    Participant

      Has anyone else felt like their brain was hijacked during chemotherapy, taken for a long joyride, and later returned with some dings and dents?   I underwent biochemotherapy treatments (a combo of interferon, interleukin-2, dacarbazine, vinblastin, and cisplatin) in 2003 following a Stage IIIc diagnosis.  I've blogged a bit about my lingering "chemo brain" challenges at http://www.hotelmelanoma.blogspot.com.   I'd love to hear from others who've experienced similar "challenges&quo

      Has anyone else felt like their brain was hijacked during chemotherapy, taken for a long joyride, and later returned with some dings and dents?   I underwent biochemotherapy treatments (a combo of interferon, interleukin-2, dacarbazine, vinblastin, and cisplatin) in 2003 following a Stage IIIc diagnosis.  I've blogged a bit about my lingering "chemo brain" challenges at http://www.hotelmelanoma.blogspot.com.   I'd love to hear from others who've experienced similar "challenges" and read your stories about the challenges you've experienced and how you try to manage them.  Thanks, and best wishes.

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        Erica A
        Participant

          My husband underwent bio-chemo in 2005 for stage IV and for a few years after the treatment he complained that it was like trying to think through fog or pea soup.  It was especially evident when he was at work and trying to solve tough issues. He had some brain function tests done  at the time and there was noticable damage to his frontal lobe.  I am happy to report however that it did go away and he now says that he doesn't have "chemo brain" anymore.  Back to pre-cancer functioning!

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            RMcLegal
            Participant

              Erica, glad to hear your husband is back up to full speed!  I'm much improved, but my short term memory and reading retention still isn't what it was pre-treatment.  But oh well, I'm just grateful to be walking around healthy and sure don't regret doing biochemo treatments.  Best wishes to you and your husband.  Rich

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              RMcLegal
              Participant

                Erica, glad to hear your husband is back up to full speed!  I'm much improved, but my short term memory and reading retention still isn't what it was pre-treatment.  But oh well, I'm just grateful to be walking around healthy and sure don't regret doing biochemo treatments.  Best wishes to you and your husband.  Rich

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              Erica A
              Participant

                My husband underwent bio-chemo in 2005 for stage IV and for a few years after the treatment he complained that it was like trying to think through fog or pea soup.  It was especially evident when he was at work and trying to solve tough issues. He had some brain function tests done  at the time and there was noticable damage to his frontal lobe.  I am happy to report however that it did go away and he now says that he doesn't have "chemo brain" anymore.  Back to pre-cancer functioning!

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                Fen
                Participant

                  Similar story – 2004 chemo for breast cancer followed a year later by the month of high dose and 6 months low dose interferon for stage 3 or 4.  I was an avid reader prior to diagnosis, but for years after I just couldn't focus enough to get through a chapter.  It has just been recently that my focus is back.  Just took a long train ride and read The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks during it – first book I've been able to finish in a long time.

                  I also noticed emotional "flatness" for years and that doesn't seem to be coming back. I used to get great "exercise highs" and spending a day in my garden was heaven. Now? Meh.   But like you I am just happy to be upright and plugging through and maybe things will improve on this front also.

                  fen

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                  Fen
                  Participant

                    Similar story – 2004 chemo for breast cancer followed a year later by the month of high dose and 6 months low dose interferon for stage 3 or 4.  I was an avid reader prior to diagnosis, but for years after I just couldn't focus enough to get through a chapter.  It has just been recently that my focus is back.  Just took a long train ride and read The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks during it – first book I've been able to finish in a long time.

                    I also noticed emotional "flatness" for years and that doesn't seem to be coming back. I used to get great "exercise highs" and spending a day in my garden was heaven. Now? Meh.   But like you I am just happy to be upright and plugging through and maybe things will improve on this front also.

                    fen

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