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13 09, 2015

Thalidomide: Worth the risk?

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Dr. Tricot and I didn't restrict our conversation to the "transplant again or not" debate. We also spent a good deal of time discussing how to handle my worrisome peripheral neuropathy (PN). As I shared last month: Peripheral neuropathy smacks me hard!   Thalidomide maintenance has sped up the progression of my PN exponentially. Fortunately,

31 08, 2015

Help with peripheral neuropathy A to Z

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As promised, here's a comprehensive list of drugs and supplements that readers use to help battle peripheral neuropathy (PN) symptoms: Acetyl L-carnitine - Important amino acid that might help. It has the added benefit of being credited with helping improve memory in Alzheimer’s patients–those of us with chemo brain can use all the help we

25 08, 2015

Tips to help control peripheral neuropathy (Part Three)

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Common peripheral neuropathy (PN) remedies not working for you? Or maybe you'd like to try something new in addition to steps you've already taken to control symptoms. Here are additional suggestions made by fellow patients: Suzanne suggests, if the neuropathy get too annoying, ask your Doctor to put you on a small dose of nortriptline;

22 08, 2015

Tips to help control peripheral neuropathy (Part One)

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Like many multiple myeloma patients, I have battled peripheral neuropathy symptoms since starting therapy in 2007. I have written dozens of posts over the years featuring tips on ways to help minimize the debilitating side effects. Several have helped me. Maybe one or more can help you, too. Patients that have been diagnosed within the

13 11, 2013

Peripheral Neuropathy: Can you feel the BUZZZ?

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Peripheral Neuropathy (PN) can manifest itself in a variety of ways.  Tingling and numbness in feet and hands are common.  Sometimes pain can shoot up one’s leg with each step. And/or a patient’s hands and feet can be painful, even at rest.  But today I experienced a freaky, new symptom. This is my fourth consecutive

30 08, 2013

Pros and cons of taking L-glutamine and alpha lipoic acid

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You can't see behind the scenes into my email in-box, but if you could you would find the same backlash defending alpha lipoic acid (ALA)  that you can read in several comments following yesterday's post.  L-glutamine is also used to help minimize peripheral neuropathy symptoms.  It appears on my list, too.  Both  of these powerful

25 06, 2013

Peripheral neuropathy? Dr. Berenson recommends alpha lipoic acid

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Don Baylor wasn't the only prominent guest on our Blog Talk Radio panel Thursday evening.  Myeloma specialist, Dr. James Berenson, joined-in and gave his two cents worth, too. I mentioned this weekend that Dr. Berenson assertively stated there is no solid evidence in medical literature supporting the claim that stress is bad for a cancer

3 04, 2013

BREAKING NEWS: New study proves duloxetine (Cymbalta) effective reducing painful peripheral neuropathy

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I'm preparing an article about this to post tomorrow.  In the meantime, I'm excited to report that a newly released Phase 3 study, published today in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA),  reports that duloxetine (Cymbalta) "was associated with a statistically and clinically significant improvement in pain compared with placebo." Here's a free

7 01, 2013

Pat’s medical “State of the Union” for 2013

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Two weeks ago I referenced a visit I had with my myeloma specialist, Dr. Melissa Alsina at Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa.  But I never followed-up with any details.  The President makes a State of the Union speech each year in January.  Without nearly as much pomp and circumstance, here's an update on my current

25 08, 2012

Alpha Lipoic Acid not good for myeloma patients

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Alpha lipoic acid is one of the best--if not the best--anti-neuropathy supplements available.  Velcade (bortezomib) causes peripheral neuropathy (PN) in most patients that use it. So understandably, many cancer centers that treat multiple myeloma are recommending patients take alpha lipoic acid (ALA) to help minimize Velcade induced PN. But apparently, alpha lipoic acid shouldn't be

10 06, 2012

ASCO: Cymbalta helps ease peripheral neuropathy (PN) symptoms

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I thought this was interesting... Apparently, The antidepressant duloxetine (Cymbalta) cuts down on the numbness and tingling associated with taxane or platinum-based chemotherapy, which is commonly used to treat breast and other solid tumor cancers. So could it help our peripheral neuropathy (PN)? My guess is yes.  And I have heard from several fellow patients

10 04, 2012

Easter Sunday complications remind me what it might be like without sub-q Velcade

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My friend, Richard, from our myeloma support group, is a big-time baseball fan.  He loves spring training, so he talked me into going to a game a couple of weeks ago in Dunedin, Florida.  It's about an hour drive from my home.  The Toronto Blue Jays were playing the Minnesota Twins.  The park is very