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Old 01-03-2009, 07:58 PM   #1
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after treatment for neck and throat cancer what side effects will I have

my husband who is 71 had stage 4 neck and throat cancer, primary tumor was in back of his tongue. At this time he is cancer free after 33 radiation treatments and 8 chemo treatments. It has been 3 months since his last treatment. At this point he has absolutely no energy, even though he is taking vitimins. I still feed him thru a G tube, he says that he has a very hard time swallowing, feels like something is in his throat, plus he has a lot of mucas that he has a hard time getting up. He is very miserable. Even though the doctors state he is cancer free. Are these normal side effects?

 
Old 01-09-2009, 06:42 PM   #2
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Re: after treatment for neck and throat cancer what side effects will I have

very, very normal. Sore throat,dry mouth, mucus, the feeling of something in ur throat,no taste or energy...ALL NORMAL! It may take months for him to feel better. Hang in there!The treatment is brutal, I know.Get alot of rest & take care of yourself! God Bless, it will get better

 
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Old 01-11-2009, 08:38 AM   #3
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Re: after treatment for neck and throat cancer what side effects will I have

Thank you so much for answering my note. It gives me hope for my husband. We are starting physical rehab next Thursday. I sure hope this helps, he still walking with a walker, and is extremely tired even with vitimins. I found out that he had two throat infections, so he's on antibiotics, hopefully when infections are gone, he can start swallowing some liquid.
Thanks again for showing concern
nonnie8

 
Old 01-14-2009, 06:21 PM   #4
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Re: after treatment for neck and throat cancer what side effects will I have

Your very welcome!Keep me posted on his progess!God bless!

 
Old 01-23-2009, 08:41 AM   #5
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Re: after treatment for neck and throat cancer what side effects will I have

Yes i was thru the same myself i am clear also and now i have dry throat and water sack under chin i would like to get rid of.get plenty of excersie it will help with tiredness and stamina (i ride a bicycle ) you will dry up soon enough and wish you had some saliva
congrats for induring all tyhat radiation

 
Old 04-19-2012, 09:36 AM   #6
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Re: after treatment for neck and throat cancer what side effects will I have

Quote:
Originally Posted by nonnie8 View Post
my husband who is 71 had stage 4 neck and throat cancer, primary tumor was in back of his tongue. At this time he is cancer free after 33 radiation treatments and 8 chemo treatments. It has been 3 months since his last treatment. At this point he has absolutely no energy, even though he is taking vitimins. I still feed him thru a G tube, he says that he has a very hard time swallowing, feels like something is in his throat, plus he has a lot of mucas that he has a hard time getting up. He is very miserable. Even though the doctors state he is cancer free. Are these normal side effects?
I would like you to know I too finished base of tongue throat cancer treatments exactly 3 months ago (end of January 2012). I had radiation and "Erbitux" treatments. I go for my PET scan in a few weeks to dertermine if I am cancer free. Visually they say all looks good. Mine was stage III and I had one lymph node involved.

When I read you post all I coud do is yell "That's Me!!". I have swelling, I have so much mucus. Until just recently I had no energy and I was / am so frustrated. I am 48 years old by the way. I have always been healthy and I do not smoke or drink. My cancer was HPV related. I want you to know your husband will get better, just last week I took a sudden turn for the better. The mucus is not as bad and the pain is much less, but the swelling (and I gag a lot) is still there. I still have my tube and I drink 6 ensure a day and eat what and when I can. My mouth is dry and sticky most of the time (I sip water constantly just to keep my mouth moist) but I am fortunate that I can now taste my food. Tell your husband to hang in there. It is absolutely one of the hardest treatments / aftermath to go through. I have never been a sick person, never a broken bone or even a cavity! My prayers are that your husband will soon turn the same corner I did. Bless you. I'm thankful for your post (I hope that is okay to say) because I was getting so discouraged and feeling like this misery would never end. - Tim / Idaho

 
Old 08-29-2012, 10:26 PM   #7
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Re: after treatment for neck and throat cancer what side effects will I have

I, too have been experiencing what all of you have been saying in this particular line of postings. stage 4 Squamous cell carcinoma at the base of the throat, also HPV related...however, I am a recovering alchoholic (21 years sober) & 1 pack a day smoker (now still can't let go of the 5 or so I still smoke) & I smoke pot. It's CRAZY that I can't let go of the ciggs after all I've been through!!! I'm working on finding the right way to do it that works for me & smoking cessation programs/resources in my area. I had 36 radiations & 7 chemo treatments (Erbitux)...GOD IT WAS S-O-O BAD AT TIMES! I was having trouble with the pain, diarrhea & nauseousness & finding the right medications for any of it that didn't make any of the other side effects worse. It's now been 3 months after treatments & my 1st MRI looked good. PET Scan coming up next week & another endoscopy in Oct. I have experienced all of the above mentioned side effects with an addition of a swollen saliva gland that is bothering my ear. I do not have a G-tube...lost 20+ pounds during treatments & am still hovering right around 137-140 lbs. I force myself to eat & still can't taste much...also have 1 ot two Ensures a day. I was wishing they had a pamphlet, publication or something that had a line-up of what side effects to expect & when. I'm one of those kind of guys that will try to have it all planned & figured out...whatever it is. Right after treatments I had a HORRIBLE radiation burn come out on my neck, thoat, running part way down to almost my chest & the tips of my shoulders. The left side was the worst & developed cellulitis (severe infection)...I had to be put in the hospital for a couple days while the ran several IV antibiotics through me. I couldn't find any available/recommended creams or salves that didn't burn/sting or make it ooz even more. My wife finally got some raw, fresh Aloe Leaf from the produce dept. at the grocery store. She cut & peeled some pieces & would keep them in some filtered clean water with some pieces of gauze in a covered bowl. I would keep applying the gauze to the burns & when I could finally apply it without it burning too much, used the anibiotic cream I was given. It took awhile, but finally cleared up. I was getting pretty tired of having to be peeled off the pillow & sheets in the morning...I would stick to them. I've been full of questions the whole time. I have great doctors at Stanford Universities Cancer center in Palo Alto, CA (where I did my treatments) who try answer the best they can...but it doesn't seem to be enough. I finally started going to the available support group meetings, councellors & now this blog site. I have trouble fighting with depression, but the more I reach out & search for different answers & ways to share experiences, it seems to help. Thank you for this chance to do so.
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Old 09-21-2012, 04:53 AM   #8
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Re: after treatment for neck and throat cancer what side effects will I have

Hi, my husband was diagnosed with Stage III throat cancer with lymph node involvement, 2 large left, 1 small right.... in April, he had 35 rads/2 chemos..he couldn't take the 3rd his counts were too low.... he was alway somewhat able to eat, strangely... but did lose 25 lbs, from 155 to 130ish...he had the rash, gave us some cream, but that seemed to make it worse, so they suggested a salt solution with a warm cloth that seemed to work pretty well, it dired it up over time.... other issues were pain in the jaw really bad, some nausea, and sore throat... he had no strength, slept for the first two months of treatments, then finally got through it and began to recover. We got a Vitamix, and that worked a bit, but he really didn't like the smoothies too much, so we settled on Carnation Instant Breakfast, with a scoop of protein powder, and into the Vitamix, at least once a day along with his other meals. He still can't eat anything that is breadlike...so his weight isn't really coming back too well, the docs did say they didn't expect him to gain much weight for the first 3 months after treatment, and he had gained 7, now losing three since his throat is not feeling as good as before...his Pet Scan is scheduled for Oct 10, so we're hoping for good news...
...the side effects that are hard.... one, saliva, it seems to be thick, if there is any, collects in his throat, and a week ago he got a yeast infection in his throat, so was on antibiotics for a week, so we'll see how that goes, if it gets better..so no saliva, or very, very little, and it seems to get drier and drier..that's a concern as it affects eating and hence, loses weights... he's tried Biotene, and it's OK, but doesn't work that well... then there is the lack of enegy... that's tough but getting better.... and that fluid pouch under his neck... was huge... checked with the doc...he said that the fluid is from the body and since the lymph nodes have been radiated, the fluids don't know where to go, so you have to massage it away now... because once the collagen forms in the area it will trap the fluid and it will never go away...so the massage, and it's working! is to take you finger, lay it flat on your neck, and move it from the chin down to your sternum, all the way around... so it's like stoking with neck with the flat of your finger, or hand, as if you're squeezing the water down.... he starts on the left and goes around to the right and begins again...so he's been doing that for about three weeks, and it's almost gone. He must do it 4-5 times a day, but it's working!
We're concerned for the saliva, we hope it returns...so he can gain weight. He's back at work half days or so... he's still very tired a lot of the time... he has gone back to the gym, doing some workouts but not streneous...so we're hopeful that things will eventually get back to normal.
I make a lot of things with gravies, it's hard to eat meat so I concentrate on mostly vegetables.... except for chicken marsala, on cappallini... it's got mushrooms, lots of butter, and it's slippery and really easy to get down....so try that if you want, it's delicious!
Thank you everyone for your info, I wish everyone well, and I hope these cancers will all just go away someday!

 
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Old 09-23-2012, 09:52 PM   #9
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Re: after treatment for neck and throat cancer what side effects will I have

I took my PET Scan & the Dr. couldn't tell if the lit up parts he saw were lymphnodes or mucsles. My case goes before what Standford University's Cancer Center calls "The Tumor Board" for discussion & then they will call me with the results & decision they reach as far as what to reccommend...could be surgery to remove the lymphnodes. I'll know sometime next week.
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Old 09-24-2012, 06:18 AM   #10
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Re: after treatment for neck and throat cancer what side effects will I have

I'm rooting for you, that's hard to wait for a definitive answer... is there ever one when you've had cancer.... my husband says it's like once it's there, somehow he thinks that it's invaded and simply over time will show up somewhere else. Maybe true, who knows... the chemo doc said that with head and neck cancers if a cancer shows up again, then it's likly going to be mid-chest or above, usually doesn't go elsewhere in the body, maybe others have heard that, maybe not.... I know that PET scans show the hot spots in cells where the sugar is as cancer likes sugar... so whether it's cancer or not, that' where your group diagnosis come in... interesting....I hope it's good news, and that no surgery is required, and that you're on the mend....!!

 
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