Chemotherapy & Radiotherapy Treatment – Cycle 3 (CTC3)

CTC3 commenced on 1 July 2010. On that date, I had already completed 16 days of radiation treatments out of a total of 28 days.Dr. Lopes, my Onocologist had advised me earlier that
for CTC3, since radiation treatments in CTC3 will ends on 19 July 2010, I need not come to JHC for intravenous drip during the 1st day of CTC3. I will be taking oral tablets in CTC3 again until 19 July 2010. But instead of skipping oral tablets on Saturdays & Sundays when there was no radiation, this time Dr. Lopes wants me to carry on taking oral tablets over the weekend.

A blood test was conducted to check if I was ready for CTC3. For the first time since taking blood tests prior to chemo treatments, my red blood cells count was within the normal range. Also my haemogoblin and white blood cells counts were normal.

Because my red blood cells count was normal, Dr. Lopes wanted me to cut down on my iron pills intake. But I was certainly ready for CTC3.

During CTC3, my Hand & foot syndrome started getting worse. The skin peeling in my feet were more obvious and the pain was very uncomfortable whenever my bare sole step on hard objects on the floor.

Towards the end of my radiation treatment in CTC3, my anus region starting to tear and burns. It was so bad that my entire anus region was looking like a piece of BBQ meat. I also lose lots of weight during CTC3.

During my weekly appointment with Dr. Lee, I raised my concern regarding the burn on my anus region. He propose a cream for me to apply to the burned area.

Dr. Lee & the nurse also advised that I must ensure that the region was kept clean and sterilize before I apply any cream. Since the skin was burn and expose, it was prompt to infection and bacteria and I had to ensure that cleanliness must be of utmost importance.

Dr. Lee proposed I use Potassium Permanganate solution as an antiseptic cleansing solution. I was recommended to wash that region at least 3 times a day. When the solution touches the burn skin, the pain was terrible. But after a while I got use to the pain. Before using the solution, I always use a saline solution to clean the surface area.

The nurse also recommended that I get myself a float or a ring cushion to that I can use it to sit on and not expose my burn region to the seat. With the ring cushion, it did helps to ease the pain.

CTC3 was very bad for me in terms of side effects as it was also the ending stage of my radiation treatment. So all the radiation side effects finally shows it’s colors.

Towards the end of CTC3, I also had severe nausea and vomiting. My appetite was very bad and I lose lots of weight during the last 10 days of CTC3. Dr. Lee prescribed to me some Granisetron tablets for my nausea but it did not help.

In the end I had to take Zofran or Ondansetron to ease the nausea.

The drugs given to me during CTC3 were as follows:

  • Capecitabine (Xeloda) – Administered orally twice daily for the next 14 days. Tablets to be taken in the morning and evening after food. Each session comprises of 3 xeloda tablets of 500mg each (i.e. 1500mg per session). Total consumption daily is 3000mg. (Stop on 19 July 2010, when my radiation treatment ends)
  • Granisetron (1mg) – One tablet to be taken twice daily before or after meals as needed for relief of nausea and vomiting. Did not work for me during CTC3.
  • Zofran / Ondansetron (8mg) – One tablet to be taken 8 hourly before or after meals. Work better than than Granisetron. It did helps to suppress the vomiting.

From 19 July 2010 – 9 August 2010, I had a 3 weeks break from chemo treatments to allow my body much needed rest from the onslaught of chemo & radiation treatments given to my body in CTC2 and CTC3. Those 3 weeks without chemo treatments did help my body to recover a bit and I felt stronger and better. I was not so tired and my appetite built-up again. I also started to regain the weight I had lost during CTC3.

On 15 July 2010, my wife also returned back to Singapore from Shanghai. I was so happy to see her back. She bought so much supplements for me from Shanghai.

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