2007 Breast Cancer 3 Day

Thursday, December 29, 2005

Insomnia and Mouth Sores

Well, it is now 3:30 AM...that's right...A.M. I am experiencing my first episode of insomnia due to chemo. I've read that this is sometimes an issue with cancer patients. For all of you out there that have insomnia regularly, my sympathies are with you. I know I should be tired due to my counts being low and our day at the zoo, but I am wide awake. I feel like it is 3 in the afternoon. I've watched a movie already and read a little bit, but sleep is no where to be found. I am hoping this isn't a regular event now. I guess I could take a nausea pill since they make me sleep like a rock, but now it seems pointless since Emma will be up in just a few hours. I will hopefully catch a nap later on today.

The other side effect that is finally rearing it's ugly head is mouth sores. I don't know if you've ever had an ulcer in your mouth, but these are 10 times worse. My tongue has 3 ulcerated spots on it and I have 2 on the inside of my lower lip. My chemo pharmacist mixed me up a little something to help ease the pain, but it only lasts about 15 minutes and I can only take it every 4 hours. It is Mylanta, lidocaine, and some sort of antibiotic. Basically if I am having mouth sores that means my entire intestinal track is suffering as well. The Mylanta drink helps the mouth but also helps the ulcerated spots I may have elsewhere in my system. Needless to say, I am pretty uncomfortable. Eating hurts, talking hurts, and I think it's getting worse not better. My taste buds are shot except for bold flavors such as dill pickles, Doritos and oh, my icky Mylanta drink. The one thing on a planet I wish I couldn't taste is the most prominent. I think I will be shifting to ice cream for the next few days as the cold seems to help if only temporarily. So other than that...I'm doing just peachy. So what's going on in your neck of the woods?


  1. I'm sorry that you are having a tough time right now, Fran. I do get ulcers in my mouth, and just one is agony, so my heart truly goes out to you. When my friend Danielle experienced mouth ulcers with her chemo, she was told that gentian violet would help. It will stain your mouth purple, but it did help her feel better more quickly.

    I am praying for you! I am glad that you posted, I was getting worried about you.


  2. Fran,
    We were so glad we got to see you, Ed, and Emma for Christmas. We had a great time, and you look truly fabulous, as always. We are sorry to hear about your battle with the mouth sores, it must hurt so bad. Hopefully a remedy of some sort can provide you at least comfort if not a cure, maybe for the insomnia too! This sounds crazy but is there a chance something over the counter would work? I would be so frustrated, but you, well again truly resilant and positive! We hope you enjoy your visitors, we love you!
    Brian and Anna

  3. Nilstat is another rinse and swallow antifungal that we use alot. I think it tastes like bananas. It is a medication they use for thrush.

  4. P.S.
    I found a really good resource for patients and thought you may be interested in checking it out.

  5. Hi Fran,
    I am praying for you daily! My aunt went thru b.c. a year ago. I told her about your blog (she now reads it too) and what you were going thru with the sores. She had the same thing and her dr. said to mix equal parts of Mylanta and Benadryl. You use it as a mouth rinse. Don't swallow it. Maybe you can try that in between the other stuff you use. Hope that helps. Take care and thanks for keeping us updated!
    In His name,

  6. Kim in NJ (FIAR)December 29, 2005

    Hi Fran... Just wanted you to know that I am praying for you and your dear family as you travel this BC road. I am so encouraged to read your blog and see how God is sustaining you through this trial. Blessings to you....

  7. Fran, if ice cream works for you, it's probably the cold that helps. Keep ice chips around all the time to help numb your mouth. I hear you have been having some unusually warm weather down there....get out and enjoy if you can. I love you very much and read your blog daily. Much love to Ed too, he is god sent. Tell Emma "mouse" for me.