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Has anybody here undergone radiation treatments for tonsil/neck/throat cancer? What were the side

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sinkingfeeling Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-02-09 03:51 PM
Original message
Has anybody here undergone radiation treatments for tonsil/neck/throat cancer? What were the side
affects? The radiologist scared the heck out of me, telling me I will have blisters in my mouth and throat, won't be able to eat or maybe even swallow, and will never be able to have a tooth pulled afterward and should have them all done prior to treatment. Also he wants me to have a feeding tube!


I posted this in the Health forum not knowing there was a cancer group.
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elleng Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-02-09 09:58 PM
Response to Original message
1. My husband did.
You were at least lucky to be warned about SOME side-effects.

My husband had surgery (tongue) first, and I don't want to misstate any symptoms. A MAJOR one, even 10 years later, is significant loss of saliva. Eating has generally been a problem, due to the surgery. Speak with occupational therapist (at hospital) first.

'Strength' of teeth/bones is jeopardized, so future dental work at issue; check with your dentist.

Good Luck

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LeighAnn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-29-09 09:07 PM
Response to Original message
2. Hi. Have you called the Bloch Cancer Center?
I know I sound like a broken record here, but if you'll call this number

1-800-433-0464

they'll hook you up with a survivor of your kind of cancer that can help show you the ropes and let you know what to expect, etc.

Please visit their website:

http://www.blochcancer.org /

There are a ton of resources therein.

Sorry for the delay in responding to this!!! Hope you are doing okay!!

~*Peace*~

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santamargarita Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-09-10 05:36 AM
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3. I'm about to find out
I have a lymph node on the right side my neck that is cancer but not the primary source. They suspect my right tonsil. Will be going for surgery soon.
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sinkingfeeling Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-01-10 02:07 PM
Response to Reply #3
6. Hope you're doing better. I had the cancer on my right tonsil and a secondary on the left. Did the
surgery in Jan. 2009 and did have 33 radiation treatments. I did not have a feeding tube and did not miss a day of work throughout. The worst was the week immediately after the final treatments. I then fell into depression for a few months and had to have a few bone splinters removed from my jaw (caused by the radiation). Finally early this year, I began to feel normal again. Still have dry mouth, but about 85% of my taste is back.
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Redbear Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-12-10 04:45 PM
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4. Story on Denver Nuggets coach George Karl who is going through that
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santamargarita Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-16-10 12:51 PM
Response to Reply #4
5. Thanks for the link...
I'm not sure what else to say right now.
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Redbear Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-29-10 10:33 AM
Response to Reply #5
7. Hope you are doing well. Let us know.
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AlienGirl Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-11-11 11:54 AM
Response to Original message
8. Tongue cancer, 2002
The radiologist was right.

I have never gotten salivary function back, and carry water with me everywhere I go. I didn't have my teeth pulled (he didn't suggest it--I should have) and so I am stuck with numerous cavities, abscesses, and broken teeth that must be root-canaled because they cannot be pulled. I went down to 80lbs. and probably should have had a PEG tube, but I had so much hardware in me for chemo that I didn't want another tube.

The good news is in a year I was eating regular foods--though no longer able to handle any level of spice, which was a huge adjustment, as I had been a Sriracha fiend--and I had almost a decade of good, healthy years.

If I had it to do over again I'd get the surgery and save the radiation for the second occurrence, which has apparently now begun. That is the other thing about radiation: once you've had it, you've blown your wad and can never use that option again.

Tucker
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