Let me tell you something. When they tell you that the worst side effects from radiation treatment happen after treatment ends, they aren’t fucking kidding.
Son of a bitch, this is miserable.
I don’t know how it is for other folks, but for me, it’s not terrible pain or anything (well mostly anyway) just it’s always something.
I have a swath of purplish skin under my arm and circling around my boob. This swath is slightly painful to the touch and itches like crazy. (They told me to put OTC cortisone cream on it – and that helps – for awhile.)
I’ll spare you what all is going on with the nipple. You’re welcome.
On my chest, above the breast it’s all red, slightly painful to the touch (not as bad as the underarm though) and itchy.
But the worst is under the breast in the crease – it is RAW. OMG does that hurt – but only if you touch it.
And I have to touch it three times a day.
As instructed I put calendula cream on everything twice a day and Aquaphor at night.
I can’t tell if anything is getting better or if I’m still in the downward cycle of side effects.
Because of the raw part, which I already had on my last day of treatment – I have a follow-up appointment with a nurse this Friday. She said to call and come in earlier if it gets worse (worse than what? It’s raw, it stings like a paper cut with lemon juice poured into it if you touch it, and it’s seeping blood), or cancel the appointment if it gets better.
At least the gauze they gave me to put under the boob helps to keep the skin from rubbing – it’s supposed to let air get to it. Who are we kidding? Under my fat old lady boob? There’s no air – I’d have to install a snorkel for air to get to that area.
I would call and go in sooner, but then I wonder if I’m just being a big baby and should just suck it up buttercup. And then just when I think I have to call and go in, I think (imagine?) wait. Is that a teensy bit better? Or not? Or, I don’t fucking know.
All I do know is that I’m pretty sure I’m not canceling the appointment to have it looked at again. (You know me, any chance to whip out a boob!)