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Old 12-24-2003, 05:55 PM   #1
Hi_its_Joe
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Question Metallic taste (cancer symptom?)

When I type "metallic taste in mouth" into a search engine I come up with cancer as a possible cause but I'm not sure if this is a symptom of treatment for cancer or the cancer itself. Can anyone here tell me if this is a fairly common symptom?

Just wondering - Thanks

 
Old 12-24-2003, 09:55 PM   #2
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butterflytrans HB Userbutterflytrans HB User
Re: Metallic taste (cancer symptom?)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hi_its_Joe
When I type "metallic taste in mouth" into a search engine I come up with cancer as a possible cause but I'm not sure if this is a symptom of treatment for cancer or the cancer itself. Can anyone here tell me if this is a fairly common symptom?

Just wondering - Thanks
A metallic taste in the mouth is often a side-effect of certain drugs, but it's not particularly something that is associated with cancer.

 
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Old 12-25-2003, 11:14 PM   #3
Hi_its_Joe
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Re: Metallic taste (cancer symptom?)

Hi Butterfly

Thank you. That is very encouraging!. The U.S. government now has a cancer site where you can actually speak with a live official about such things and she said the same thing so I guess I can rule that out as a symptom (whew!). I think this particular symptom (as it relates to cancer) involves tumor gowth into certain nerves in the jaw which cause taste alterations and perhaps that was what I was reading a few days ago when this was on my mind.

You have been very helpful incidentally and I appreciate your many generous and knowledgeble replies to my various posts

- Joe

 
Old 12-26-2003, 08:55 AM   #4
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Re: Metallic taste (cancer symptom?)

Yeah...well, derangements in taste are normally to do with benign brain tumours involving cranial nerve seven....so it can be a symptom it's just a very rare one.

I have to stress that if you took cancer as a whole and listed all the possible symptoms out there, you'd find that there are TONS of symptoms that many of us have every day, but that doesn't mean we have cancer. The thing that is hard to understand about symptoms (which is why a doctor will never be replaced by a robot) is the fact that there are things called "sensitivities and specificities" that go along with symptoms. One symptom of ovarian cancer is abdominal pain, but if one has abdominal pain, that doesn't even come close to meaning she has ovarian cancer....in other words, abdominal pain is not specific to ovarian cancer. However, if someone has a sudden onset seizure with no history of epilepsy, the chances of having a brain tumour are much higher....why? Because seizures are much more specific to brain tumours than abdominal pain is to ovarian cancer.

The problem with the internet is that, sites will give lists of symptoms that are associated with certain conditions (like lung cancer for example), people who are worried about a certain type of sickness will go to the site, realize that s/he has some of these symptoms, and then convince him/herself that s/he is sick with the disease. Then, even when the doctor reassures the patient that s/he is not sick, the patient will think the doctor missed something (I've seen that a LOT on these boards).

The other point I wanted to make is....you are absolutely right, the leukoplakia that is associated with HIV/AIDS is the "hairy type", but that is the classical textbook definition. Someone with HIV/AIDS can have the "smooth" variant of leukoplakia as well, and if someone presents with those symptoms, it's very important to try to rule out BOTH precancerous lesions as well as other conditions that affect the immune system.

Does that all make sense?

 
Old 12-27-2003, 06:13 PM   #5
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Re: Metallic taste (cancer symptom?)

Yes, that makes perfect sense Butterflytrans. What is really shocking is that over the holiday, I just happened to talk to my own brother over the phone and he blurted out that he has dipped snuff for 14 years and has these white patches in his mouth and I was like whaaaaa!?!?!?!?.

He could not have known about my "white patches" because I had not told anyone else but I do remember him asking me for a "dip" back when we were a lot younger, however, I had NO idea that it had become a regular habit with him, that he had chewed all this time or especially that he had the same white patches that I have been freaking out over lately.

Well, I lectured him good and proper about it and he told me he really wanted to quit and was asking me how I managed to quit myself. It's been over a week now and I will neve chew that awful crap again. I have been using nicotine gum (4mg/$24.95 a box). It comes in mint or orange and lasts me about a week and YES it definately does pack a good nicotine wallop and reduce my cravings. I wrote my brother a long letter after we got off the phone with my whole story, the risks involved and steps he could take to stop chewing.

Anyway...

 
Old 12-30-2003, 07:29 PM   #6
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Re: Metallic taste (cancer symptom?)

[QUOTE=Hi_its_Joe] "metallic taste in mouth"

Joe, can you give more information? How long has this been the case? And what are you doing differently now than before?

2-butoxyethanol results in a sour taste that turns to a burning sensation - & even Loss of taste; but that isn't a metallic taste.

It does sound like some kind of chemical you might be being exposed to.
Hopefully you can read up on new products you are using at home and at work, and stop using whatever it is that 'causes a metallic taste' and spare yourself whatever the long term consequences of that product/chemical might be.

Very good that you are noticing how your body reacts. If you are persistent, you will track it down. Your employer has the MSDS sheets on all things that are used at work - posted somewhere in plain view. And if not, get another job.

Margaret

Last edited by hbguide1; 12-31-2003 at 06:39 AM.

 
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