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Cancer: Throat Message Board
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Old 07-27-2003, 06:28 AM   #1
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Post throat cancer

I have been to many doctors, ents etc over the past year. I have had a sore throat since last June only on the right side. The ent assures me I don't have throat cancer. I asked him to biopsy, he said "what do you want me to biopsy"? I have had a neck ct, neck ultrasound (2 cysts 3mm each, normal, 3 scopes (through the nose to the vocal cords) and bloodwork. He did say I have a cyptic tonsil. I just find it hard to believe. I think it is cancer, can't get it out of my head.
It has been a year now. Would I know if it were throat or tongue cancer? Is it possible that it is was slow growing and the doctor didn't see it. The last time I saw him was the end of June (this past june). He didn't do any tests, just looked in. Said it all looked fine. See, my tonsils don't even look inflamed.
I'm sorry to bother any of you, you are all very strong. If you can help me in any way, please do. I can't really get a second opinion as we only have the one clinic. I do like this ent, he is very caring and the hospital is a teaching hospital, so I know he is respected.
Thanks again Michelle
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Michelle

 
Old 07-27-2003, 09:37 AM   #2
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Hi there...I feel bad when I hear your story because you're clearly the victim of a doctor who is obviously very good at what (s)he does, but lacks the people skills needed to make his/her patients comfortable. I know that cancer is a very scary thought, and I'm sorry the doctor didn't put you at ease about it. The thing with throat cancer is that, when it happens (even if it's slow-growing...though normally it's not) there will be a change very early. For example, you might have a lot of trouble swallowing, have a lump in your neck, or most commonly, go hoarse for more than a week. Having a chronic sore throat, I agree, is not a good thing, and that's probably why you were sent to the otolaryngologist in the first place. I'm sure (s)he did all the necessary investigation to rule out cancer (i.e. physical exam as well as imaging studies) and (s)he has enough information to confidently say that cancer is very unlikely. The reason (s)he didn't do a biopsy is probably because #1. the probability of cancer is very low and #2. there is a lot of tissue trauma associated with a biopsy, and what's the point of needlessly putting you through pain?

Could it be a "slow growing" tumour that the doctor missed? Probably not. Most throat cancers are pretty "fast growing" and they'd give symptoms more than just a sore throat.

Does that help?

 
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Old 07-27-2003, 09:48 AM   #3
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You helped more than you could possibly know. I am not hoarse or anything, i keep feeling for lumps but I can't find them, or I think I do but then it's not there the next time I look. I hope he didn't miss anything, I am sick of living in fear 24/7.

Thank you so much for your reply. I thought that throat and tongue were most likely pretty agressive cancers, but wasn't sure. When I did see the ENT I had plenty of pain so I thought he would have seen it then.

Who knows! Thanks again. Michelle
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Old 07-27-2003, 12:09 PM   #4
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projapoti~

My gosh you are very knowlegeble Are you in a medical field??

Renee

 
Old 07-27-2003, 12:16 PM   #5
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Hi Renee! Thanks Yes I am in the medical field....I just finished my second year of medical school...will be starting my clinical training come September. I can't wait.

Quote:
You helped more than you could possibly know.
I'm very glad to hear that. It really bugs me when a doctor doesn't take the time to explain stuff to his/her patients. I am hoping that, one day when I'm a physician, I'll be more compassionate to my patients.
Quote:
I am not hoarse or anything, i keep feeling for lumps but I can't find them, or I think I do but then it's not there the next time I look.
Try to minimize doing this 'cause all it'll do is make you hypervigilant and you'll be living in fear. Every time you have the urge to feel your neck, don't do it. Head and neck anatomy is VERY complicated..I'm not sure if you've seen a cadaver before, but it's CHOCK full of arteries, nerves, muscles, connective tissue etc. etc. etc. The point I'm trying to make is, there are a lot of normal lumps and bumps in there that might give you the false impression that something's wrong when it's not.
Quote:
I hope he didn't miss anything, I am sick of living in fear 24/7.
I know what you mean, but slowly try to phase it out of your head. Otherwise, the fear will continue.
Quote:
Thank you so much for your reply.
You're very welcome.
Quote:
I thought that throat and tongue were most likely pretty agressive cancers, but wasn't sure.
Yep, they are very aggressive cancers, which is a good thing because if you did in fact have an aggressive cancer, it would've shown up by now.

 
Old 07-31-2003, 12:10 PM   #6
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Question

Projapoti: what specialist would you recommend for a person with raised nodules on the back of the tongue,for ten months. They give the feeling of pills in the throat,and can always be felt. No redness.

 
Old 07-31-2003, 03:52 PM   #7
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I would recommend an otolaryngologist..i.e. an ENT doctor. (S)he can take a look at that and decide what to do from there.

 
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