Life with bowel cancer


Chemo & forgetfulness

Hi my husband has had 4 rounds of chemo (oxaplatin) and I’ve noticed he has become quite forgetful. Has anyone else experienced this? If so does it improve when treatment ends?


Hi @ElaineG

I had 5fu (no oxy) and found that my brain was totally scrambled at times. I forgot a GP 's appointment for the only time in my life and avoided doing all but the shortest driving journeys. I also felt that my brain was completely full up with just one thing....cancer, so there was no room for other stuff.

After chemo was over , things gradually improved but the loss of confidence was also an issue. I still make endless lists and notes.

Have you talked about it together...I expect he is worried too.

Best wishes to both of you


Hi @ElaineG I am just about to have my 10th cycle of Folfox and am very forgetful at times. I have always relied on alarms and reminders but I have found that I need to set them for the smallest thing nowadays. I have missed appointments as well. @Lizalou’s description of her brain being ‘scrambled’ is a good one, sometimes I feel like someone has taken my head and given it a good shake and muddled everything up 😀

It’s disconcerting at first but helps to know that others have experienced the same. I am hoping it improves when the chemo finishes but obviously don’t know that yet for myself.
There will be others along with their experiences later I’m sure.

It might be good to talk together about it, if you have noticed it then chances are he is aware of it and may be worrying.

Take care, Jane :x::x:


Thanks for your reply. No I haven't spoken this about it, I'm not sure he has noticed. I know that both of our brains are just full of cancer, it never leaves your mind for one second. From your profile it looks like you are doing well. Long may it continue
Best wishes to you


Hi @ElaineG , I get what you mean, I have managed to forget the exam date for my 8 year old son and he did not revise for it and when he went to school one day and when I went to pick him up,he said "we had our exam today" my heart sunk! Obviously he did not pass. Therefore I have learned the hard way! And my mobile has become my personal assistant! And blueberries fruits my second person assistant! I take them everyday and this has helped me! Memories comes back when you stop the treatment but if the treatment is for the rest of your life, I wonder where I will be with my memory then!. All the best.:x::x:


Hi @ElaineG I now make lists for just about everything, appointments, when bills are due to be paid, even the most basic shopping as it all just slips out of my head. I had 6 rounds of Folfox previously and I think my brain took about 6 weeks to start to return to normal. I'm now 2 cycles into my mop-up chemo and I'm experiencing the same issues again but I'm confident I will return to normal once this treatment is over. I haven't missed an appointment yet but I have a mild panic attack each time I turn up for one because I'm convinced I've got the wrong day/time even though it is clearly written on a letter or card.
If your husband does notice, please reassure him that it is quite common. If he doesn't then at least he has you to remember things for him - my husband doesn't have a clue about my schedule so I have to find other ways to cope. Hope this helps. :x:


Hi @ElaineG, I am just the same, I have to write everything down, even with chores! And I tend to repeat myself, gawd help us.:x::x: