Neuropathy as a result of colon cancer chemo

September 20, 2016 at 04:37 PM · Dear Colleagues,

I've been diagnosed with colon cancer and need to start chemo soon. I've read previous posts (from 2013 and 2007) about issues with neuropathy (tingling, pain, numbness in fingers) which is a side effect of the preferred colon cancer treatment (Folfox). But maybe, now that it's almost 2017, there are new stories/research to share? Is there an oncologist out there who's particularly interested in helping violinists with colon cancer? Got any tips on port placement? Thanks so much, all!


Replies (9)

September 20, 2016 at 09:35 PM · Hi Jennifer, I can offer you no tips or answers but I hope you do well with your treatments. My elderly father had colon cancer and the treatments worked very good for him although he did not feel his best while receiving the drugs. I hope that all will go well for you Jennifer.

September 20, 2016 at 10:12 PM · Hi Jennifer,

My mother had cancer and her port was placed just below the collarbone, so I would recommend requesting that it be placed on the right side of the chest. Ask your oncologist about neuropathy and other side effects - they might have some ideas to help. Best of luck with your treatment.

September 20, 2016 at 10:53 PM · Hi Jennifer, my husband has just finished chemo for appendix cancer - it's considered colorectal so gets the same regimen 3 drugs - folfox, oxalyplatin, something else). When we asked about it we were told this is still best evidence practise. He had / has peripheral neuropathy from 1st dose and they were constantly adjusting doses to try to minimise the effect. A couple of months after the last dose he is noticing improvement in his fingers but not yet his feet. His port was placed to left side (not a violinist, it got it out of the way for seat belt as a passenger [right hand drive, in Australia]. He'd had huge surgery and intra-peritoneal chemo right beforehand, so maybe his response was more pronounced than someone else the same age - but he was useless for the entire 6 months of Rx. He had chemo brain issues, fatigue, nausea, all together was not able to do more than around 20 minutes of concentrated work at a time. Like reading or making his lunch. And lots of nodding off through the day. It was frustrating for him because he lost his active leisure pursuits for that time. My best wishes for you.

September 20, 2016 at 11:31 PM · Jennifer,

This web site provides some interesting questions about cancer treatment:

I do not agree with all what they claim, but it is good to know that there are alternatives in healing practice.


September 21, 2016 at 05:16 AM · I would stay away from that website. Perhaps, but only if you're knowledgable enough to use the website (and discard the junk, interpret the decent and downplay the magnificent articles) you could go to . But that's the major scientific medical website, and, even when I get sick or close to me, I will not read there. (Did that once, which resulted in the "one week with 2hrs sleep". Person in question is now studying viola, so everything got rigth)

With chemotherapy, it depends on the type of drug you get to see the risk of polyneuropathy. Also, prevention and treatment are dependent on the drug, as mechanisms for chemotherapy tend to differ.

Best to discuss it with your oncologist.

September 23, 2016 at 09:14 AM · Thanks so much for all your feedback, friends!

September 23, 2016 at 12:06 PM · I have genetic neuropathy in my toes and feet and have had some relief with anti seizure medicines which also help manic depression, which I am also a victim of. The one I take is called Neurontin.

September 24, 2016 at 10:02 AM · Thank you! This is helpful! I'm making a list of drugs that might work. I'll make a note of Neurontin.

September 24, 2016 at 01:20 PM · there's a whole class of anti seizure meds many of which also help neuropathy, Neurontin is just one of them, I don't know the names of others, a doctor would know.

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