Chemo kit innit

A friend just asked me what was most useful during chemo because she wanted to send something helpful to a recently diagnosed friend. It’s a question that has come up too many times, sadly. Not trusting my brain to recall anything that long ago, I googled ‘Chemo Kit’. The results were a mixed bunch, perhaps compiled by office-bound medical staff or well intentioned religious folk. So I thought I’d get the coffee on and concentrate really hard and see what I could remember.

What works for one may not work for all, but some things might hit the slightly nauseous bullseye. The amount of information you get at the beginning is overwhelming but I know it was annoying to find out things that could have been helpful AFTER it was all over.

People may do chemo at the start or at the end, depending on their treatment plan. I have reliably forgotten some things so I’m making this a community operation. Please feel very free to add suggestions, especially my lovely ‘breasties’ out there who have had their own experiences and strategies.

Chemo Kit:

Warm bedsocks
Magicool (for chemo flushes)
Sucky sweets for nausea (sugar free)
Sleep hats
Pretty scarves for headwear (if the person is into doing that)
Sunglasses
Wide brimmed sunhat that’s not too scratchy on a baldy head
Sensitive skin suncream
Earplugs
Hat that covers ears and bottom of the head
Easy going books (not meaningless but not too emotional)
Cancer cookbook (sometimes the hospital will have their own but you have to hunt for them)
Unscented Hand sanitiser in lots of different forms (especially one that is automatic for home use)
Boxsets of comedy shows or Netflix subscription
Comfortable and safe/secure slippers
Warm and cosy wrap/cardigan
Little lap blanket
Super soft toothbrush
Corsodyl toothpaste/mouthwash (only use when gums are bleeding as prolonged use will turn your teeth grey!)
Pitrok (natural deodorant because you can’t use the chemical stuff)
Natural, scent free bar of soap
Lipsourcil Expert mascara (if you’re feeling flush, this MIGHT help with preventing eyebrow/lash loss)
Ice lollies (for nausea)
Pocket tissues (the hairs in your nose will fall out too and that means there’s nothing standing in the way of those drips)
Pillbox for medication
Soft neck scarf (to counter drafts)
Comfortable headphones
Tablet/iPad (if you have a ton of cash)

‘Surgery kit’, ‘Hospital stay kit’ and ‘Radiotherapy kit’ in the works..

2 thoughts on “Chemo kit innit

  1. Lisa

    What a great idea to compile list for kit ingredients!

    Chemo kit:
    -Journal for recording food eaten, medications taken, how one’s feeling during chemo. (this helped me let my doctor know how I was doing because my memory was faulty)
    -Gift card for reiki, massage or acupuncture sessions
    -Comfy pajamas with wide waistband
    -Peppermint or lemon ginger tea (good for nausea)

    Radiotherapy kit:
    -Vitamin E oil (for soothing burny skin)
    -Pure aloe lotion (same)
    -Aquaphore lotion (thick lotion, for use on any cracked, peeling skin. Excellent for feet, too)
    -Miaderm lotion (recommended by radiation oncologists here. Very soothing lotion)
    -Aveeno hydrocortisone lotion (I recommend this one in particular because it seems to be more soothing and hydrating than others. Also, irradiated skin is not only dry but can be rashy, too)

    Post-active treatment suggestions, too:
    -Clear nail polish such as Sally Hansen Hard As Nails: makes those icky chemo nails look nicer
    -Fragrance-free lotion such as Aveeno

    Can’t wait to see your other lists, too!

  2. Heidi

    Ah yes a journal, great idea my dear! I remember I had SO many different medications and they were all to be taken in different amounts at various timings. It was so, so confusing! And combine that with chemo brain and all bets are off! I remember screwing up my steroids dosage and having a terrible set of extra reactions to the chemo to deal with that put me in hospital. Doh.

    I shall start working on the other kits soon.. thanks darling. x

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