My mom was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2009, at 58, with a few positive lymph nodes. She went through surgery, radiation and chemo, and we all thought she was cured. This summer, after experiencing some mild headaches and vertigo, she had an MRI/CT and was diagnosed with what both the neurologist and neurosurgeon said was a meningioma. She had a very successful surgery to remove the tumor (egg-sized, easy removal, no tentacles, surgeon sure it was a meningioma). Unfortunately the pathology came back positive for a breast cancer met. Everyone, including the Dr.s, were surprised. She has since undergone scans, and there is NO evidence of cancer anywhere else.
As per the radiation oncologist's recommendation, she underwent WBRT, with a boost to the area where the tumor was. I'm not sure of the dose, but she had 20 radiation treatments, in 4 weeks time. During the first week of treatment she became increasingly fatigued and nauseous, and by the end of the WBRT she was so fatigued that she could only stand up for a few minutes at a time (no steroids Rx'ed) She had her last treatment one month ago, and is still so fatigued and nauseous that she sleeps 12 hours at night, and doesn't really leave the house. She can hardly eat anything, but does not vomit. She is terribly discouraged and frustrated. Before this, she was perfectly healthy and vibrant, exercised frequently, and had a full and active life. Now she is practically incapacitated.
Is this a typical reaction to WBRT? How long can we expect this fatigue and nausea to last? She has an excellent short-term prognosis as there is no evidence of any cancer at this time. We are anxious for her to start living what life she has left!
Tremendous thanks in advance!!!!