Saturday, July 20, 2013

Tracker Keeper

I made this chart a couple of weeks ago when the number of drugs I had to take, and their schedules, became too much to remember. I have a different version for Chemo Weeks with even more drugs on it.

Several of these drugs cause constipation, so I also track bowel activity and the things I've taken to try to manage it.

Since I'm on a completely liquid diet now, I live on IsoSource 1.5 CAL from Nestle. For my personal caloric requirements I need to ingest six "cans" per day (it comes in cartons now, but everyone refers to them as "cans").

I also need to get at least two liters of non-food fluid per day, although I'm about to crank that up to three liters. Two has not been enough.

In normal times I take Metamucil every day to augment the fiber in my diet. I have that on the chart but haven't been doing it. I'm going to make a new version of the chart momentarily and I'll take it off. I can't swallow that much liquid at one go, and it is too gelatinous to put through my feeding tube.

Treatment can be very hard on teeth. I'm missing the saliva that protects teeth with antimicrobial properties. And that Apoptosis Stew that has replaced my saliva can't be too beneficial for teeth. Part of the prep for treatment was to have "fluoride trays" made. You put fluoride gel in them and place them on your teeth for a minute to bathe your teeth in fluoride, then remove the trays but don't rinse for 30 minutes.

Unfortunately, my mouth is now very sensitive and the tray edges abrade my tongue and gums. I can't use them. I brush on a little fluoride on some nights, but it stings pretty badly. It also gets washed away pretty quickly because I am rinsing the Apoptosis Stew out of my mouth every few minutes. I can't do it all. I'm just hoping my excellent pre-cancer dental health and my constant rinsing carry me through.

The radiation, by the way, can also permanently weaken and partially deaden the bone in the jaw. It may not be possible for me to ever get a dental implant again because my bone will not be vivacious enough to bond with the implant.


  1. Just think how much you're going to absolutely cherish feeling normal after this!

    1. Here we are 10 months later. I'm reading through the story again and this comment was soooo apropos.