Yesterday was the last of the dexamethasone for this phase that I had to give to Bianca. The dexamethasone is a steroid (so she won't be entering any big sport events!) and it can cause an increased appetite and weight gain and it can also cause mood swings and things like that.

This first time round Bianca was on it for 28 days. She developed a massive appetite and was constantly hungry. So much so that an hour after eating a big meal she was asking for food again. Then she would be up again at 3 in the morning asking for food again. So we got in the habit of leaving a lunch box next to the side of her bed.

One evening after she had gone to bed, I was sitting with her as she was eating some stuff. At that stage she already gained quite a bit of weight and had this really round face and tummy. I remember feeling quite sad that she sat there stuffing all this food into her mouth and getting quite out of breath and she didn't look like she used to look. Of course as soon as she went off the dexamethasone, her appetite became quite normal again and she lost the excess weight.

Another thing that happens with dexamethasone in particular is that Bianca tends to go off sweet things and crave salty items. So one of the things that she wanted all the time was Salt and Vinegar Pringles.

She didn't go on dexamethasone in the last phase. But in this phase she was on it for 5 days at the start and went onto a marmite sandwich diet. Well, it is actually vegemite, but she calls it marmite. I didn't mind too much because the bread we buy has extra iron in it. She just completed the second and last 5 days in this course and this time round it was rice crackers (the chicken flavour). This time round it also made her more clingy and much more emotional. That is quite hard, because you can't get angry as it is not her fault, but only the medicine she takes. But it becomes quite tough as she doesn't even want you to leave the room and she wasn't very interested in doing a whole lot of stuff. So I found these last 5 days quite tough.

In this phase she didn't have a huge appetite and weight gain as in the first phase. I'm dreading the next phase starting early November as she will be on this for 21 days, but hopefully she won't have too many of these emotional days.