First Chemotherapy and First Radiation

Indications of the imminent approach of a tidal wave, as verified on tape and anecdotally during the Boxing Day tidal wave in Thailand several years ago, was (or is) the slow withdrawing of all the water back from the beach, in some areas as much as several kilometers away from the coastline. Once withdrawn, there is a ‘pause, two, three, four’ and then the water comes screaming back towards and then over the beachlines/coastlines and well inland.

At 2:00 am this morning, I had a mild hiccup which woke me. My immediate thought was that the bought of hiccups that I had while in hospital with the feeding tube in was back. Not to disturb Gail’s sleep, I moved to the couch. And then it started. First, my mouth went dry, cold and clammy. Next all the of the muscles in my mouth, even those reconstructed during the surgery from my forearm flap, contracted, pulling down into my throat. Even my tongue got into the act. Ohmigod! These are my personal indicators that I was going to vomit, sorta like tidal wave indicators. I lept off the couch and ran to the ensuite, pausing to close the door adjoining the bedroom so Gail wouldn’t be disturbed; tactical error. I starting spewing. I held my mouth closed, but the shear power of the spasm in my guts forced my lips open. Yuck! I caught what I could and dashed for the toilet where I unloaded the rest. Projectile vomiting. Yuck! Yuck! The whole event took about 90 seconds to completion. And then it took me about 10 minutes to clean it all up… and Gail didn’t wake up. Yay.

I had another incident after trying to eat scrambled eggs about 11:30 am. No mess this time, just straight to the toilet bowl and whooooosh.

I’ve also had two serious bouts of hiccups in the last few hours, and one that just started moments ago, for which I’ll have to get some help from Gail. What we find is working is she will rub/pinch my earlobs while I hold my breath… this somehow redirects CO2 to a specific nerve grouping which is assumed to be responsible for the hiccups. Its a nerve called the Vagas, I think. Hey, it seems to work…

So all of this is happening within the first 24 hours of my first chemotherapy course with Cisplatin. Thank goodness today in Saturday and I don’t have any radiation. Now that would have been a nightmare.

The amount of vomiting has exceeded the baselines that we were given, so we called into the telephone triage centre… there’s more medication on the way.

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