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Diet and Nutrition By popular demand our nutritional message board. This board will be monitored by a Registered RD who is certified in oncology by the American Dietetic Association

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Old 03-11-2018, 07:38 PM   #1
Senior Member
Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 185
Chemo-induced Osteoporosis: Seeking Healthy ways of Rebuilding Healthy Bones

In about May of last year, I fractured 3 ribs by levering the hedge clippers hard against my chest to cut through an inch-thick rose branch. I had a bone scan then that showed up the 3 fractures, two where I levered against my chest under my arm, and one on 6th rib closer to the sternum. Plus severe osteoarthritis in an right elbow I broke during chemo in 2014 and in my spine and in my left shoulder. I would have liked a full report but the GP only asked about my ribs.

Now I just had a BMD DEXA scan and assessment. It shows that I have T-scores of 3.3 for my lumbar spine (osteoarthritis) 1.5 for my femur and total hip, and 1.1 for my forearm(all in the mild osteopenia level).

I have been daily taking two or three of my 1000 VitD3 tabs plus 1500 glucosamine (to protect against/treat the osteoarthritis) plus 1000 vit E plus a general vitamin supplement, swimming and walking once or twice a week, etc for the osteoarthritis which I am sure was miminal before treatment but hit hard during/after chemo of docetaxol, carboplatin and herceptin. Trying to eat healthy, v little alcohol, one coffee a day, no carbonated drinks, minimal starch and sugar, eating cheese eggs' fish and chicken plus lots of vegs and fruit much of it from my own garden. Ongoing heartburn an hour or two after eating which is reduced when i go without wheat products or sugary things, and with smaller meals etc.

My cancer diagnosis was non-hormonal tumor, only HER2+ so I am not on Aromase Inhibitors or tamaxofen or similar.

Reading further now, I discover that my own chemo regime significantly affects bone density in many women. Esp the Lumbar spine. So what I have is drug-induced osteoporosis/osteopenia, which I believe must be different to the normal osteoporosis of aging. I am looking for ways to reverse it and strengthen my bones naturally through diet and exercise because I am not impressed by what I have read about the medical treatments for osteoporosis i.e. that they make heartburn and reflux worse, and add to bone density by reducing breakdown of bones, not by increasing new bone growth, and may in fact not make any difference to bone strength even if BMD is improved. Like using strontium compounds which are denser than calcium so increase BMD without really helping at all.
I have a rebounder and plan to use that for 10min blocks several times a day. And to do more walking. I am trying to find out about forms of calcium that can be absorbed well, and how exactly to balance calcium, magnesium, VitD3 and all the other nutrients needed to rebuild healthy bones.
I would love to know other people's experience of things that help, and thoughts and ideas and research.
best wishes
Jessica Vivien
1997-2004 many cysts, many MG & U/S: polycystic breasts.
Sept 2013 found lump,Cyst?? forgot lump.
Dec 2013 GP check, Referred for U/S, MG,FNA.
7 Jan 2014 Radiology: Radiologist turned screen away from me. When asked she said "Not a cyst, very suspicious.See your GP asa results avail."
Cancelled my psych clients for the week.
8 Jan 14 GP: 2.2cm IDC in 6cm DCIS field. FNA=malignant cells. Referred to Surgeon.
Cancelled my psych clients for the month.
13 Jan
14 Surgeon said L mastectomy not lumpectomy, offered neoadjunctive trial, agreed adjunctive chemo after surgery a good choice for me. Booked Body scan and bone scan for staging (both fine) Surgery for16 Jan,
16 Jan 14 Surgeon also agreed in preop meeting to also remove 6cm fatty cyst in job lot. Good job done.
19 Jan 14 discharged home with 1 drain.
22 Jan 14 drain partly pulled out overnight, serious seroma (600 ml reducing removed every 2 days for a month) Serious staph infection because nurse said wait 3 days for yr surgeon appointment.
26Jan 14 pathology: 2.2cm Grade 3(3,3,2)ER-, PgR-, HER2+2 so to be confirmed by Sish test. Node negative. No vascular or lymphatic involvement. No metastases in scans.
30 Jan 14 HER2+ high amplification, 13 gene copies per cell.
21st Feb 14 Began 3wkly TCH adjuvant treatment at The Mount Hospital Perth, with 3monthly MUGA heart tests +Oncologist or Surgeon full physical check-up.
Cancelled my psych clients for 6 months.
Feb 14 First MUGA test: 71%,
First C15.3 test: 20
7th March 14 began Neulasta self-applied injections 24hrs after each TCH treatment. Bonepain helped by spa, heatpacks and
Claritin, reflux/indigestion helped by Somac.
July 14 completed docetaxol and carboplatin, ongoing herceptin to 12 months. Severe cognitive deficit/fatigue after 1pm daily.
Sept 14 Second MUGA test: 69%
Cancelled my psych clients for 2014
Dec 14 Third MUGA test: 70%
Second C15.3 test : 20
Cognitive fatigue delays return to work.

March 2015 Tachycardia pulse 168, night in hospital. Cardiologist says no heart disease, ALIVE ECG attachment for my mobile phone now regular monitoring.
July 2015 Worktrial, up to 8hrs per wk. Fatigue ongoing
Aug 2015 Heart good, no evidence of cancer, just Fatigue.

Last edited by JessicaV; 03-11-2018 at 07:40 PM.. Reason: waging -meant raging
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