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Tips for men with hot flushes - Hot flushes,Advanced prostate cancer

User
Posted 08 Jun 2016 at 15:53

Hi everyone,


It’s Amy here from the health information team at Prostate Cancer UK.


I’m creating an online guide to help men with prostate cancer manage hot flushes caused by hormone therapy. I’d like to include some tips from people who have experienced hot flushes. Are there things you’ve found helpful to manage your hot flushes? It would also be helpful to hear about how hot flushes have affected you and things that have helped you deal with them.


Please comment below, message me directly, or email me with any tips you have. If we use your tip, we will use it anonymously (we won't use your name, username, or any identifiable details about you).


Thank you,


Amy


amy.evans@prostatecanceruk.org

User
Posted 11 Jun 2016 at 10:39

Cotton sheets and clothing wherever possible - doesn't stop them but did reduce intensity

When they start just try to relax as fretting only made intensity and time during greater

Yes they're frustrating (47 months of them) but its a reminder HT is keeping the testosterone level down which is helping you fight the fight

Ray

User
Posted 11 Jun 2016 at 17:38

Hi Amy
When I started on HT 18 months ago my hot flushes were hourly and pretty strong.

I manage them now with sage tablets (which seem to have reduced frequency and severity), by always wearing short sleeves, loose clothing, never any pullovers (although in the winter I might carry a fleece to pop on for after the hot flushes)
High humidity is bad and stuffy rooms set me off very quickly
Non breathing settees where my back gets hot set me off.
A cold compress on my head brings the flush down fairly quickly.
If I'm inside when I get one I try to get out into the fresh air

I spend a lot of my time on the French Med coast where it does get hot and humid. This year it's not been so bad. I sleep at night with a single sheet but still waken 2/3 times with flushes. I try to shower before and after bed.

I've bought some aircon units and this helps greatly

I couldn't say whether anything in my diet helps but I'm almost vedgy with fish, lot of fruit and nuts, organic and lots of water. I do drink red wine tho.
I still try To run to keep fit tho down here have to go out early before the sun comes up. I usually run through the hot flushes.

Hope this helps a bit.

Paul

Show Most Thanked Posts
User
Posted 08 Jun 2016 at 19:20
Hi Amy

Have you heard of using Depo Provera ?, it seems to be used in other countries but not prescribed much in the UK.

Roy

Edited by member 08 Jun 2016 at 19:43  | Reason: Not specified

User
User
Posted 08 Jun 2016 at 22:16

Amy, I take sage tablets and they have reduced the flushes that I have to every so often rather than lots ie: 6-8 per day from 12-15

I know that others have acupuncture with good results.

Regards Chris/Woody

Life seems different upside down, take another viewpoint

User
Posted 09 Jun 2016 at 09:17

Thanks to everyone who has replied so fa r.Does anyone find it useful to avoid certain foods or drinks, or wear particular clothing?


Amy

User
Posted 09 Jun 2016 at 09:40

Zips!

Never wear pullovers or anything hard to take off - especially in a crowded room or (eg) at a concert. Undoing a zip cardigan can instantly change the ambient temperature and make a difference, or the jacket / cardigan can be slipped off quickly and easily.

I have ditched much loved sweatshirts and jumpers for a range of fleeces, depending on the temperature - light, average, heavy. Not for fashionistas, but most prostate guys have reached an age when you dress to your choice, not what fashion dictates.

Hats!

Despite being only about 9% of body surface area, the head is responsible for a far larger proportion of temperature control, as the face and scalp have a huge network of small blood vessels. Use this!

If you wear a hat regularly enough for your body to recognise it as normal, then removing the hat makes an instant and refreshing difference when the flush hits.

I'm never without a Trusty Trilby.

Neither of these prevents flushes, but both can help with managing it.

.
-- Andrew --
"I intend to live forever, or die trying" - Groucho Marx
User
Posted 09 Jun 2016 at 23:04

As well as hats'n'zips, the biggest win I've had is learning what sets them off - and I'd guess that's true of most people!

For me, the main factors have been ambient temperature, hurrying, stress, and bed:

Hurrying:
I've always been a just-on-time person - to my annoyance (and annoyance to others when it goes wrong). I've tried, but never managed to deal with it. Until hot flushes. Now, I've discovered that hurrying means going from overexertion to stop. Instant hot flush. So I've finally started giving myself an extra 5 minutes, so I don't need to hurry. Not 'cured' yet - but doing pretty well!

Ambient temperature:
Going from cold to warm is a dead cert flush; so I've learned to start loosening my clothes, unzipping a layer, etc., before I get in the warm. Doesn't always work, and can't always predict what I'm going into. But it helps.

Stress:
I used to think this was something I could do nothing about. But stress isn't always a surprise, and seeing it coming allows for some preparation. Now, when i take my hat off, it isn't just respect - it's often because I'm expecting a stressful conversation.

Bed:
I invariably get a flush on waking, whether it's in the middle of the night when I get up to P, or first thing in the morning. Can't prevent it - but I have learned to throw back the covers straight away, hoping to minimise it. Possibly some benefit.

I doubt there were any surprises there - but maybe someone has something to add?

Andrew

.
-- Andrew --
"I intend to live forever, or die trying" - Groucho Marx
User
Posted 11 Jun 2016 at 01:09

Originally Posted by: Online Community Member
Hi Amy

Have you heard of using Depo Provera ?, it seems to be used in other countries but not prescribed much in the UK.

Roy


My husband was given Provera and it was very effective in stopping profuse sweating.


Rosy

User
Posted 11 Jun 2016 at 07:43

when I get hit by one I either use the battery fan I carry or if possible any stiff paper to use as a fan, still trying to control them and work out the reasons as to what may cause some of them, but some days the just hit me and I look like have been in a rain shower


at night if I wake up sweaty I just get up and have a little walk round the bungalow seems to help, and have some water before going back to bed


 


am buying cotton clothing for work, and looking at different underwear, and before you start its not ladies underwear


even just stood here typing this have started with a hot flush


 


regards


nidge


 

run long and prosper
'pooh how do you spell love'
'piglet you dont spell love -you just feel it'
User
Posted 11 Jun 2016 at 10:39

Cotton sheets and clothing wherever possible - doesn't stop them but did reduce intensity

When they start just try to relax as fretting only made intensity and time during greater

Yes they're frustrating (47 months of them) but its a reminder HT is keeping the testosterone level down which is helping you fight the fight

Ray

User
Posted 11 Jun 2016 at 17:38

Hi Amy
When I started on HT 18 months ago my hot flushes were hourly and pretty strong.

I manage them now with sage tablets (which seem to have reduced frequency and severity), by always wearing short sleeves, loose clothing, never any pullovers (although in the winter I might carry a fleece to pop on for after the hot flushes)
High humidity is bad and stuffy rooms set me off very quickly
Non breathing settees where my back gets hot set me off.
A cold compress on my head brings the flush down fairly quickly.
If I'm inside when I get one I try to get out into the fresh air

I spend a lot of my time on the French Med coast where it does get hot and humid. This year it's not been so bad. I sleep at night with a single sheet but still waken 2/3 times with flushes. I try to shower before and after bed.

I've bought some aircon units and this helps greatly

I couldn't say whether anything in my diet helps but I'm almost vedgy with fish, lot of fruit and nuts, organic and lots of water. I do drink red wine tho.
I still try To run to keep fit tho down here have to go out early before the sun comes up. I usually run through the hot flushes.

Hope this helps a bit.

Paul

User
Posted 12 Jun 2016 at 18:14
As posted elsewhere previously I've had favourable experiences of auricular (Ear) accupuncture to mitigate hot flushes/sweats.

Approximately 1 month after commencing Hormone therapy through Zoladex injections I started to experience some of the widely published side effects, in the form of Fatigue and also mild hot sweats.

After some research on managing side effects and then learning about the availability of some free Accupuncture sessions, I decided to give it a go, so with an open mind about effectiveness, I started to attend group Accupuncture sessions at the Robert Ogden Macmillan Centre at St James' Hospital Leeds.

Although I wasn't able to conclusively identify any immediate benefit to myself, the other regular attendees at the once a week, 1 hour group sessions, all spoke so favourably about the benefits, so I stuck with it.

After attending weekly for approximately 10 weeks, and not being able validate the benefits, I then missed 3 sessions for a holiday and I experienced an increase in the frequency and regularity of my hot sweats, which on returning to the weekly sessions did noticeably diminish again, which has now convinced me that it works for me.

So I am now fully converted to auricula Accupuncture as an alternative therapy that does help reduce the frequency and severity of hot sweats/flushes, but not necessarily stop them all together ! and I would suggest that it's definitely worth giving a go (with on a open mind) to anybody looking for help in mitigating the side effects of hormone therapy.

Regards,
Graham.
User
Posted 14 Jun 2016 at 12:18

 


 

Edited by moderator 14 Jun 2016 at 16:09  | Reason: Not specified

FOTOFANTASTIC
User
Posted 21 Jun 2016 at 22:12

Caffeine, alcohol and exercise all set me off. agree that garments with zips are very  helpful

User
Posted 11 Jul 2016 at 09:35

Hi all. I'm not sure if I'm unusual compared to others here. I had a RP in Dec 2014 (followed by radiotherapy). I am not taking any hormones, but have recently started experiencing hot flushes. It's not something I noticed immediately after the operation, but I would say it has got noticeably worse in the last 2-3 months. I can't pinpoint what sets it off (although I will track alcohol and caffeine now I've read those can be triggers). I'm assuming it's just due to a reduction in testosterone since the operation, but why it has taken 18 months to start happening I'm not really sure. My wife now complains that I want the window open all the time. I thought that particular argument would happen the other way around eventually but I guess role-reversal has happened!

User
Posted 11 Jul 2016 at 10:35

Hi Amy

There have been many threads and postings on the forum over the years about hot flushes . Have a look at:

http://community.prostatecanceruk.org/posts/t10994-Use-of-cyproterone-acetate#post134238

Alan

User
Posted 24 Sep 2016 at 18:42
Hi Amy,
Have just started having hot flushes about a month ago - over 25 a day! I am wondering whether I am getting a double whammy from the steroids I have to take for Polymyalgia Rheumatica, because the flushes are quite debilitating! Sweating is cited as one of the side effects of the steroids.
Also, can I expect these flushes to continue all the time I am having the injections, which will most likely be for 3 years?
Thanks
User
Posted 25 Sep 2016 at 11:21

Many people report that they get fewer or not so bad as time progresses; others don't.

The trick for me is prevention, or managing. I have fewer now (after 20 months), and I give myself credit for part of that; most are much easier to get through, which I also give myself credit for.


It's not that I'm superhuman or anything (though, of course, I am!), it's just that I invested time and effort into working out what sets mine off, and what makes them easier.


Read up on all these tips and more. I know, for example, that if I take my coat off in the cool outside before entering the warm pub, rather than taking it off inside, is one flush I won't have. I know if i give myself 5 minutes longer to get to the bus stop, rather than hurrying, that's another hot flush I won't have. And those are just two!


I still get hot flushes, but probably half as many - and, maybe more important - many of them pass quickly and easily.


Happy reading!

.
-- Andrew --
"I intend to live forever, or die trying" - Groucho Marx
User
Posted 25 Sep 2016 at 17:53
Chillow is a cool pillow that you can put in bed and roll onto if you are feeling hot.

Can purchase online and my OH finds it useful for hot flushes at night time.
User
Posted 10 Oct 2016 at 17:11

I've just stumbled across this thread and have found it very interesting. I have been having hot flushes since I started Degarelix injections in July 2015.


They have always been uncomfortable, but after a few months of them, they actually started to become painful! I always know when a hot flush is coming because a get a pain, something like you would imagine a sharp blade slicing my skin. This happens mainly in my arms, but can happen in my legs, across my chest or across my stomach.


I have spoken to my GP about this and she said it is probably blood vessels expanding on their way to becoming a flush.


Like others on here, I tend to wear loose clothing, with short sleeved shirts. I keep a cardigan handy to slip on when I start to feel cold again. I also have the battery powered fan handy. Trouble is, when I am not having the flush, I do actually feel cold.


I have just been looking up the "Chillow" but the manufacturer seems to have gone out of business which is a shame.


 


Regards,


Peter

User
Posted 10 Oct 2016 at 17:50
Have you tried chillow.co.uk Peter? I bought 2 recently and they gave me some good advice about them.

Hope that are still trading, I understand there have been some cheap copies made that may affect business.

ATB

Alison
User
Posted 10 Oct 2016 at 18:50

Hi Alison,


Yes, I have tried chillow.co.uk, but they just have a banner message saying that they have now closed down due to being unable to compete with cheap copies on the internet.


It is a shame because it looked like a brilliant product.


 


Peter

User
Posted 10 Oct 2016 at 19:21
oh no that's a shame. they are useful as you can just roll on and off as required.

There is a .com site in USA I will have a moo he on the Internet and let you know if I find anything.

Alison
User
Posted 10 Oct 2016 at 20:33
Dear Peter

I have been trawling the Internet for you.

I have been in contact with the owner of an online company called

Notanotherbunchofflowers

It's a fantastic website that offers thoughtful gifts for people with illness and going through cancer treatments.

I bought my Chillow from there and she has come back immediately to my enquiry explaining that the cheaper fake Chillows have flooded the market and put the original company out of business. That said the cheap versions are leaking and breaking and do not work properly so Amazon etc are banning them. Consumers have to be careful as they have named themselves Smoothsoft Chillows after the original. They are selling for as little as 5 pounds.

The owner of the above website has got 200 original Chillows on order and due to be shipped in from America. I believe they are 30-40 pounds each.

Send her an email and see if she will save one for you?

I have direct contact details if you need them.

Good Luck!

Alison





User
Posted 11 Oct 2016 at 16:53

Thanks Alison. I have sent a message via the website, so hopefully I will be able to get one once they are back in stock.


 


Peter

 
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