Is Chemobrain Real? Coping With Brain Fog During Cancer Treatment
Talk with almost any cancer survivor, and he or she is likely to bring up the topic of “chemobrain,” a term which describes thinking and memory problems that can occur during and after cancer treatment.
Chemobrain is said to affect up to 75 per cent of patients during treatment with 35 percent reporting symptoms post-treatment.
I describe chemobrain as a kind of mental fogginess which can be an extremely frustrating side effect of cancer and its treatment. Signs and symptoms may include confusion, a short attention span, difficulty concentrating, finding the right word or multitasking.
I am currently writing an article for the Patient Empowerment Network on the topic of chemobrain and I’d love to hear from you.
Did you experience any symptoms such as those described above? If so, how much did they affect your daily life? What was the most frustrating part for you?
How long did the symptoms last? I joke even now that I have chemobrain but it’s been over a decade since my own treatment ended.
Most importantly, do you have any tips you’d like to share on how to cope with chemobrain which would help other cancer patients?
Hi Marie, I have written an article on it and done a video – based on my own and observed experiences. You are welcome to quote. https://karinsieger.com/chemo-brain-explained/
As always, looking forward to your write-up. Warmest. Karin
Thanks Karin – I’ll be sure to do so.
I am suffering from chemo brain after treatment for breast cancer. The worst part is being involved in a conversation, and right in the middle, my thoughts totally stop..and I have no clue what I was talking about.
Good day Marie, I’m responding to you concerning my experience with the dreaded “chemo brain”. I was DX with TNBC in Jan 2018. I completed my chemo in August 2018. I was hopeful that my severe issues with chemo brain would improve and they have a little in a year. But I continue to suffer with all the usual complaints. I am now scheduled for evaluation by a neuropsychologist on Oct 1, 2019 with testing to follow.
I’m a retired forensic accountant and to struggle with simple math equations boggles what’s left of my brain!
I would consider this side effect to be the worst complication of all of my treatments.
Please feel free to contact me if you need any further information.
Thank you so much Trish for taking the time to share your experience with me. I too found that the impact chemobrain had on my work was the most frustrating part for me. Please do let me know how you get on in your evaluation next month. Warmest regards. Marie