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#147801 - 04/05/12 02:10 AM Finished 6 weeks of chemo and 33 radiation!!!!
terrib Offline
Senior Member (100+ posts)

Registered: 02/05/12
Posts: 151
Loc: MN
My husband just finished treatment today!! The nurse at radiation said we were both walking lighter and I think we were!! It felt good to pack up everything from the Hope Lodge where we have been staying during the week. I was shocked at how much stuff we had to haul home, the car was packed. Treatment went so much better than I feared after reading about all the possible side effects. He did not lose his hair, no chemo brain, (at least not more than he already had) and the nausea wasn't near as bad. Only 4 days where he lost his tube feedings. The rest of the nausea seems more related to the idea of eating so nothing really the past 2-3 weeks. Lost 20 pounds during treatment but not all bad. He always wanted to lose 20 so he is enjoying wearing clothes that were too tight. The worst has been the gunk in the throat that he has to cough/gag it up. His neck was pretty raw and red but is looking better in spots already since they changed the radiation area to limited spots. After 7 weeks of traveling 3 hours one way it feels nice to be home till next Tuesday when we go back for 3 appointments. Now for the healing to begin and get back to voice therapy and hopefully get the urge to eat again soon. Today his mouth tastes like salt water, was rusty nails. I am trying not to count the days till the first PET scan. I want to sit back and enjoy the spring weather and not wish for July to get here. Thanks for being here and all the support. I can't believe we have been on this journey for almost 6 months. Last October seems so far away.
Husband diagnosed Oct '11 Cancer of the vocal cord Nov '11 removed right vocal cord. Neck Dissection, cancer in one node, .2, very small & contained) Jan '12 Radiation and Cisplatin, 6 doses. June '12 & Dec '12 clear Pet scan. April '13 Celebrating 1 year cancer free since treatment ended.

#147803 - 04/05/12 03:02 AM Re: Finished 6 weeks of chemo and 33 radiation!!!! [Re: terrib]
Maria Offline
"Above & Beyond" Member (500+ posts)

Registered: 07/15/11
Posts: 945
Loc: Ohio
Congratulations to you both on finishing treatment! Be sure to find a nice sun hat with neck flap to shade your husband's neck from the spring sunshine - it's had enough radiation of all kinds for a while! He will have to build up strength again, but I really believe walks in the spring weather helped my husband emotionally and physically. We were where you are a little over a year ago!
CG to husband - SCC Tonsil T1N2M0 HPV+ Never Smoker
First symptoms 7/2010, DX 12/2010
TX 40 IRMT (1.8 gy) + 10 Cetuximab
PET Scans 6/2011 + 3/2012 clear, 5 year physical exam clear; chest CT's clear of cancer. On thyroid pills. Life is good.

#147804 - 04/05/12 03:29 AM Re: Finished 6 weeks of chemo and 33 radiation!!!! [Re: Maria]
ChristineB Offline
Administrator, Director of Patient Support Services
Patient Advocate (old timer, 2000 posts)

Registered: 06/23/07
Posts: 9400
Loc: PA
Thanks for posting your update. Gosh, it seems like you just joined OCF and were beginning everything. It went quickly, at least it seems like it did. I know how worried you were when you first found OCF. Your husband's rare cancer was a very big concern.

Im happy to read about your husband doing so well. You were well prepared to face the worst and it hasnt been as bad as anticipated. When members return after treatments and give good updates it helps to give others hope. So often the focus is on all the negatives but not everyone will struggle. Keep up the good nutrition and hydration while recovering. Add some high protein powder to help speed the recovery.

Im sure you were one heck of a good caregiver. Congrats to you both! Enjoy your time back at home.

Best wishes for continued good health!
SCC 6/15/07 L chk & by L molar both Stag I, age44
2x cispltn-35 IMRT end 9/27/07, no caregiver
Clear PET 1/08
4/4/08 recur L chk Stag I
surg 4/16/08 clr marg
215 HBO dives
3/09 teeth out, trismus
7/2/09 recur, Stg IV
8/24/09 trach, ND, mandiblctmy
3wks medicly inducd coma
2 mo extended hospital stay, ICU & burn unit
PICC line w/ IV antibiotics 8 mo
10/4/10, 2/14/11 reconst surg
OC 3 times in 3 years
very happy to be alive smile

#147809 - 04/05/12 12:39 PM Re: Finished 6 weeks of chemo and 33 radiation!!!! [Re: ChristineB]
Cheryld Offline
"OCF Canuck"
Patient Advocate (old timer, 2000 posts)

Registered: 12/22/10
Posts: 5260
Loc: Toronto canada
Awesome - it'll still be a rough few weeks but he 'll improve slowly!!! Tell him to b patient - home is the best plac to recoup! Hugs! for getting there!

Edited by Cheryld (04/05/12 12:40 PM)
Cheryl : Irritation - 2004 BX: 6/2008 : Inflam. BX: 12/10, DX: 12/10 : SCC - LS tongue well dif. T2N1M0. 2/11 hemigloss + recon. : PND - 40 nodes - 39 clear. 3/11 - 5/11 IMRT 33 + cis x2, PEG 3/28/11 - 5/19/11 3 head, 2 chest scans - clear(fingers crossed) HPV-, No smoke, drink, or drugs, Vegan

#147824 - 04/05/12 08:36 PM Re: Finished 6 weeks of chemo and 33 radiation!!!! [Re: Cheryld]
bbagby Offline
Contributing Member (25+ posts)

Registered: 07/04/11
Posts: 25
Loc: North Carolina
I'm reading so many horror stories on here I thought I'd post something more positive. I was diagnosed about a year ago (March 15th, 2011) with stage 4 back of the tongue with lymph gland involvement. I went through the 7 weeks of radiation and 7 weeks of chemo once per week. I was done at the end of May and my summer was totally horrible! Totally. Yet by September I had my feeding tube removed and finally started eating normally. I'm just under 2 months from it being a year since my last treatment (May 26th, 2011) and have been improving all along. I eat about 80% normal now and still have some dry mouth and tasting issues but swallowing isn't bad at all. Meats, fish and very dry foods are the hardest but I add water and hang in there.

I'm back to playing guitar and singing in my band and I play golf as much as I can. I am somewhat concerned about future bone problems from radiation as I still have occasional "reminder pain" in my left jaw but I'm also looking at life with more of focus on the present than the future. I KNOW something else could occur so I try to enjoy life while I can. I feel so bad for those who have endured multiple procedures and treatments but admire their statements that they're glad to be alive. I admit I'm not sure I'd be.

Edited by bbagby (04/05/12 09:39 PM)
Diagnosed in March 2011. Treatment ended May 28, 2011. Back of tongue cancer with one lymph node(stage 4). Feeding tube 5 - 2011, to 9 - 2011. Some saliva and taste. Eating most foods; meat, fish and dry foods not so well. Swallowing pretty normal otherwise. Doing well now. The future? Who knows.

#149259 - 05/08/12 04:37 AM Re: Finished 6 weeks of chemo and 33 radiation!!!! [Re: bbagby]
phrannie Offline
Contributing Member (25+ posts)

Registered: 05/07/12
Posts: 31
Loc: Montana
Congratulations.......I'll bet you WERE walking lighter when you left for home....

Posts like these keep me reminded that there is light at the end of the tunnel, that treatment is NOT forever, that this is a rough patch in the hiway of life.......and we'll get thru it.

Nasopharyngeal Carcinoma Stage III T1N2M0, diagnosed March, 2012...Treatments started April 24, 2012, finished 8/28/12.


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