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Question about neuropathy


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About 10 days ago I started getting the tingle pokes in my hands and in my feet. We call them porky pines.lol I had my chemo this past Weds and my hands and wrists along with my bottom part of my legs and feet are almost have a numb feeling to them. I still feel them just a real weird feeling and I am starting to get more porky pines in my legs. Is this all neuropathy? My doctor knows about the porky pines in feet and hands but nothing else. Is this something that needs to be addressed ASAP or just wait until next appt.

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I think this si one of the side effects of your chemo. I was on Taxotere and experienced the same thing. Sometimes I would be walking along and my foot would go numb. My shoe would fall off, but I could still walk, For me, it went away when I stopped the chemo.

I think you should inform the nurse/doctor before your next treatment but it is a known side effects, so probably unnecessary to report it immediately/


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I just recovered from a 4-to-5-day episode of neuropathy (feet and, to a lesser degree, hands) which began a few days into my sixth Taxol/Carbo/Avastin cycle. The numbness, pins-and-needles, and leg weakness were very different from the sore and itchy rash which has bothered me on and off since cycle 2 and which I still have on my left ankle and calf. [uPDATE 2/2/07: Learned that the calf/ankle problem is not a side effect of the chemo per se, but a more severe version of the stasis dermatitis which I've had in mild form for several years and which recently became worse probably due to lowered resistance, poorer circulation, etc. brought on by the chemo. Dermatologist prescribed a steroid ointment which immediately relieved the itchy soreness and is slowly returning the skin to a more normal appearance.] By the second day of neuropathy I had started using an old walker we had around the house -- the alternative would have been to do a lot of crawling if it continued to get worse! I searched this board and elsewhere on the internet and found some real horror stories about neuropathy. Seems it can start some time after chemo has ended and peak weeks or months later, may or may not go away by itself or even with medication, and can become disabling. I called my chemo nurse (20 years doing this) who said the culprit was most likely Taxol (which I've now completed), that the only drug she's seen work reliably is Neurontin, and that I should call the oncologist to see if he would call in a prescription for me. I reached him at his other clinic, and he agreed to call in a supply of 100mg capsules to my local pharmacy. He cautioned that although the label would say 2 capsules 3 times a day, to diminish the significant side effects of Neurontin I was to take only one of the capsules per day just before bedtime and not increase until we talked or met again. He wanted assurance, almost like Scout's Honor, that I understood this and would comply.

I took one capsule that night, got up the next morning feeling about the same, and while the neuropathy was still there, at least it wasn't worse, and instead of getting worse throughout the day as it did the previous day, it was somewhat better by evening. Another capsule, and the next day I was able to get around quite well without the walker, with just mild pins and needles. By the third morning the neuropathy was essentially gone, and I was left with only the "nornal" rash, sores, and blisters to deal with. I'll still take the capsules on the same schedule for a while. Of course it's possible the neuropathy would have gone away by itself without the medication, but having had 6 full treatments of Taxol since October and knowing about the delayed onset feature, I wasn't inclined to take any chances.

So my advice, especially if you're getting new and/or worse sensations, would be to call your onc now, even though it's the weekend. That's why they get the big bucks! :wink:



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