Bowel cancer treatment and side effects


Four years since diagnosis and chemo Cycle no: 70 in progress!

Hello all,

Four years ago this month I was diagnosed with Stage 3 Bowel Cancer and had emergency right hemicolectomy. I commenced chemo (Capecitabine and Oxaliplatin) but by Jan 2016, it had spread to my liver and peritoneum so this was stopped.

I then started on Folfiri and Cetuximab in Feb 2016 and was told I'd be on chemo for life! Today, I'm sitting having cycle number 70 of this (with a six month break in 2017 for surgeries to take place) and my last CT scan was clear in June 2019. I feel more well and fitter than I have since before diagnosis enjoying an active life with my puppy and little grandsons. Taking them swimming is such a highlight for me and I shave my port to thank for that. I've even been considering starting 'Wild swimming' but still deliberating over that one!

My Oncologist has offered to scan me 4 monthly instead or 3 monthly but I'm undecided about this! I'll have my next one at beginning of September and make a decision then! Does anyone have any thoughts or advice on this?

Lots of love to you all!

Karen πŸ’œπŸ’›πŸ’šπŸ’™β€οΈ


Wow @Baxter2 what a journey, what an inspiration you sound amazing full of your new life .....enjoy :x::x::x::x::x:


Hi @justhope

Thank you! I live the best life I can grateful for every day I'm on planet Earth! I do have some off days and times........went to the park this morning and walked a few metres with my little dog then had to head home in the car a hurry!! (feeling unwell and desperate for the loo!!!!) I made it thankfully and returned to the park this afternoon feeling much better!

Sending lots of love to you

Karen πŸ’œπŸ’™πŸ’šβ€οΈπŸ’›

Quote from @Baxter2:
... walked a few metres with my little dog then had to head home in the car a hurry!! (feeling unwell and desperate for the loo!!!!) I made it thankfully and returned to the park this afternoon feeling much better!
Karen πŸ’œπŸ’™πŸ’šβ€οΈπŸ’›

:D:D:D Don't I know that Emperor Penquin walk!
I've learnt that when I haven't had enough water to drink for a day or two, when I catch up rehydrating followed by even the littlest exercise I need to be ready to bolt to the loo!
Then I have to wait as there're always follow-up 'tremors' to deal with!!!
After the tsunami, I'm right as rain!

On good days, boy! We can celebrate!


Hello @Baxter2 Its lovely to read your latest news You give us all such a boost with your updates
Ive had a few off days and several bumps in the road but am feeling more optimistic reading all the happy posts on here
Cath :x::x:

greyhound gal

Good morning @Baxter2 , I always look out for your posts, they’re so positive that it gives me a lift!
Are you going splashing about in the water this weekend? The weather’s definitely taken an autumnal turn and I should imagine you’d need a wetsuit?
Love Wendy :x::x::x:


V well done πŸ‘ u @Baxter2 !
Wish u every happiness & joy :x:


Hahaha! You made me laugh with the 'emperor penguin walk' @Dan-888 I bet there's many of us who can identify with that one! πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

Lovely to see you back @KatieR I know things have been a bit difficult recently, but hope you've both survived the turmoil!! How are things now?

@greyhound gal I, planning on swimming Sat and/or Sun 😳 without a wetsuit! Brrrrrr! Just had a lovely morning taking my 11 month grandson Marty to parent and toddlers and now have little Harry (nearly 3) for the afternoon! I'll be off to the park with him and Poppy soon! Never a dull moment!

Thank you @determinedjoan Right back at ya!

Have a lovely weekend all!

Lots of love

Karen πŸ’›πŸ’™πŸ’šβ€οΈπŸ’œ




Superb ,well done,big hugsxxxxx


Hi @greyhound gal

Had another amazing swim this morning. I was waving to passing trains (as you do) and later, my son messaged me with these photos!!! He and his wife and grandsons Harry and Cameron saw Grandma swimming from the train on their way to Edinburgh! πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚ Im the one waving! What are the chances eh??! Hahahaha!



what are the odds on that.... good omen... water looks inviting but I bet it was cold brrrr.


Please forgive my not knowing ...but what is the difference between a cycle and a session ?
What is the term for a course or group of chemo sessions or cycles
My head is spinning today
Cath :x::x:


Hi @KatieR

I think the terms are used interchangeably and both are fine. I'm not sure what the word is for a 'course' of chemo tbh, I just know I'm on continuous chemo so it doesn't really apply to me! I think the term course is fine but maybe someone will come along who knows more!

@Floss07 I knew they were going on the train to Edinburgh this morning and they knew I was going swimming so they looked out for me!!

Hope you're all having a good weekend

Lots of love

Karen πŸ’œπŸ’šπŸ’™β€οΈπŸ’›

greyhound gal

You are made of sterling stuff @Baxter2 !
I must admit I would have waved at the trains too Karen, I always wave at steam trains and say β€œgoodbye morning” to people when out walking the dog. Some people look at me sometimes like I’m a loon, but I’m not hurting anyone!!

Colostomy UK has arranged a closed session at my local swimming pool for people with Stoma’s. It’s in a couple of weeks time and will be the first time I’ve been swimming since getting Beryl (my ileostomy), I’m quite looking forward to it! Splash splash :x::x::x:


Well, I'm feeling quite decrepit this morning @greyhound gal! I pulled an intercostal muscle the other day and thought swimming wouldn't really make it any worse and may even help it................wrong! It's so painful this morning I can hardly cough or breath in deeply! I've taken painkillers and just sitting waiting for them to work. I'll not be able to swim today and I think I'll have to wait for 2/3 weeks for it to resolve now! Time for me to get myself a wetsuit in the meantime I guess!

Your pool swim sounds great! What a good idea for stoma patients who will no doubt have some anxieties about swimming with one! I remember distinctly the first time I swam after my big surgeries. It felt amazing so hopefully you'll feel like that too and continue to go afterwards. Please let me know how you get on?

Have a lovely Sunday! Mine will be a lazy walk with Poppy and meeting a friend for a wee curry at tea time! Mmmm!

Lots of love

Karen πŸ’›πŸ’œπŸ’™β€οΈπŸ’š


Hi @greyhound gal, what a great idea re swimming with a stoma. Can I ask where your local pool is?-:x::x:

greyhound gal

Hi @ChrisLay , it’s in Windsor.
I think Colostomy UK arrange these throughout the country every so often. They hire the whole pool for a couple of hours just for people with Stoma’s and their family.
I think it’s a brilliant idea :x::x:


Hi @Baxter2 sorry to hear you have picked up an injury , hopefully rest will sort it soon . You are some woman though. I love reading your posts , they give so much hope . Mind yourself. :x::x:


That's great to hear @greyhound gal .....a brilliant way to introduce stoma patients to swimming.

Thank you @fleur.....that's very kind of you to say πŸ˜‰ I'm def going to take it easy for 2/3 weeks to allow it to recover. In the meantime, I'm going to get myself a wetsuit!

Love to you both and have a lovely day!

Karen πŸ’›πŸ’šπŸ’™β€οΈ