Pedialyte: My New Nemesis
How much liquid does it take to fill your bladder?
If you can't answer that question, you are not alone. Not only is it something no one actually sits and ponders, but there are so many factors in your body that can change, so the answer is always subject to change.
Why am I contemplating the fullness of my bladder, you ask? Because I'm supposed to have a full bladder for radiation treatment every day, and that's been tricky.
I would venture to say most of you probably go to the bathroom as one of the first steps in your morning routine. Me, too. The trouble is, once I go, then I have to refill in time for treatment. If I start too early, I can't hold it or I'm squirming on the table (which they frown upon). If I start too late, not enough water makes it to my bladder and then I get lectured.
See, when receiving radiation in the pelvic cavity (most cancers of the lady parts, anal cancer, testicular cancer, etc.), if the bladder isn't full, some of the bowels may sink down into the treatment area. Generally, you don't want extra parts getting blasted with radiation. So, you fill the bladder, and that full bladder holds the bowels up and out of the way.
I drank almost a half gallon of water in the span of 90 minutes yesterday, and I barely got full enough to treat. All this diarrhea seems to be dehydrating me, no matter what I drink. My radiation oncologist recommended drinking a bottle of Pedialyte in place of the water in the morning in order to replace the electrolytes my tummy troubles have been stripping. I did that this morning, and it's better than yesterday, but still not where they ideally want me.
A thing about Pedialyte: it's made for little kids, and there are 4 servings in a liter bottle. It's sweet. It is not meant to be consumed all at once. The cherry punch flavor almost made me gag about halfway through the bottle this morning, and it didn't even make my mouth all red. Disappointing. Maybe I need to chase it with some water? Drinking 101 says you match each drink with a water. I may explode. Or vomit.
Fortunately, between the Pedialyte and the Imodium, my insides seem to have stopped raging about the Five Guys burger yesterday. I'm hoping this trend holds through the weekend and I don't have to drink more than the liter of Pedialyte Monday morning.
I'm also hoping grape tastes better than cherry punch and my mouth turns purple.