September 16, 2018
Some chemo drugs affect vision. Cisplatin is one of those. My peripheral vision has sucked since about week 2 of this drug, which means that I’m doing a lot of walking into walls and things and acquiring an impressive set of bruises.
Last week, I walked straight into the corner of the kitchen island with my forearm. From that one I have a nice 4″ wide bruise. I have another weird long bruise on the inside of my elbow on that same arm. I sort of remember hitting it on something, but I don’t remember what. I’ve got a bunch of new little scrapes and bruises on my legs from almost tripping over the vanity drawers in the bathroom. I dog sit for some friends once in a while. I’ve finally, I think, convinced them that I do it for me more than than them. The other night, the Stubborn One was pulling me across the sidewalk to mark something or other. I was looking at her instead of where I was going and I walked smack into a pickup truck’s mirror with my chest. I don’t see a bruise there, but I can feel one. Then, last night, as I was vacuuming upstairs after sending the pups back home, I jammed one of my toes pretty good on the vacuum cleaner. It’s a lovely shade of purple now and hurts like a son of a gun. I know there’s not much anyone can do for a bruise or a broken toe, but I’m worried. This is a lot of clumsy, even for me.
Not long after starting chemo, I learned about a coworker who was also going through breast cancer treatment. One of the things she told me was that when she was going off Taxol and onto AC chemo that she was the clumsiest she’d ever been. She’d broken more dishes in those few months than she had in 20 years of marriage. I didn’t really experience that with my neuropathy and Taxol. I am now with Cisplatin. It’s not dishes I’m breaking, but myself. This is crazy.
After a year of being on 3 different heavy duty chemo drugs, I’m starting to wonder what these chemicals doing to my body. How long with these effects last? How many and which ones will be permanent? Sadly, I won’t know about the most obvious side effects – the neuropathy, hearing issues, chemo brain, etc., for at least 3 months. But what of the ones later? One of the things I’ve had going for me this whole time is that other than cancer, I’m pretty healthy. I don’t have diabetes, heart problems, high blood pressure, chronic pain issues, or anything that will lead me to osteoporosis. The one thing I do have, and I want to do something about, is being overweight. That said, which one of these drugs will break the camel’s back, though, and cause more issues that take me back more steps than I can go forward?
Like I said… I’m worried.