[cancer] More on the mouth; and my hair, oh my hair

Oh, the joys of chemo. My oncology clinic advises me that the problems in my mouth are likely persistent and may be continuous through the rest of my chemo cycle. In other words, til the end of June. They are prescribing “magic mouthwash”, recommended to me by both and my pharmacist, which is an unlikely-sounding cocktail of Lidocaine, Benadryl and Maalox. Lidocaine numbs the pain, Bendaryl soothes the inflammation, and Maalox apparently binds it all together and coats the tissues so active ingredients can stick around inside the mouth long enough to have some effect.

I can’t wait to see what this tastes like.

At any rate, I should be able to pick some up before departing for Rain Forest on Wednesday with . At the moment, my diet is pretty damned limited by the fact that I can’t put anything besides mush in my mouth without being sorry, so I look forward to the improvement. Even if everything does taste like Maalox from now on.

In other news, brushing my hair after my shower this morning I realized I could see most of my scalp. The thinning has progressed to the point where I’m starting to look like one of those combover people. My choices are clear: to start wearing brown jumpsuits and aviator frame glasses, or cut it all off. So the hair is coming off. Because I can’t freaking stand this.

If it was up to me, I’d take it off tomorrow, but and would have to take numbers and stand in line to kill me for doing it so abruptly. I’ll deal with it next week after Rain Forest Writers Workshop. Probably can’t go full shave, for reasons of safety (I cannot afford a nicked scalp), but I will have short hair for the first time in a decade.

And yes, I have a funny-shaped head. Why do you ask?

Stay tuned for details. I might make a party of the shaving off.

2 thoughts on “[cancer] More on the mouth; and my hair, oh my hair

  1. Joy R says:

    With the lidocaine, perhaps it won’t taste like much for very long, since I imagine your taste buds will numb up as well. Though this is a guess, based on my experiences with a cousin, benzocaine, as encountered in that over-the-counter concoction for canker sores, the name of which and the bottle of which both escape me at the moment…

  2. Noddy Brothers says:

    ebonypearl at LJ – I’m posting the joke here because there are fewer commenters so possibly fewer people to gross out. You may repost it if you like – it’s an old joke and as far as I know has no copyright on it.

    It’s probably only funny to chemo patients.

    A chemo patient walks into a bar. He knows he can’t have anything to drink here, but he’s desperate to earn some money to pay for his chemo. Finally, he spies something that just might do it, so he sets his bottle of magic mouthwash down and takes bets. Everyone gathers around to cheer him on. He upends the spittoon and starts chugging.

    Five men faint, and the others urge the patient to stop, they’d pay up.

    He keeps chugging.

    Three more men faint and the bartender is looking nauseous. They all urge him to quit, they’ll double their bets.

    Finally, he sets the spittoon down.

    “Dude, why didn’t you quit?” the bartender asks.

    Pocketing enough money to pay for 2 chemo sessions, the chemo patient says, “It’s not as bad as my magic mouthwash.”

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