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#195592 - 01/12/18 07:03 PM I keep biting my tongue in same place while eating  
Joined: Aug 2017
Posts: 5
hikerdeb Offline
hikerdeb  Offline

Joined: Aug 2017
Posts: 5
On Aug. 30, I had a partial glossectomy for stage 1 SCC. Then on Sept. 20, I had a modified radical neck dissection to remove some lymph nodes (which were clear). Though I still have some residual numbness in my left cheek, jaw, and ear, I had mostly healed up from the surgeries and was doing well. However, around New Year's Day I noticed I was having some speech issues (slurring; difficulty with certain consonants). Then one night while I was chewing food, I accidentally bit into my tongue really hard, causing intense pain and profuse bleeding. Since then, I've bitten myself several times in the same spot. This is something that never happened before I had cancer. Here's the weird thing: The raised lump and deep bite wounds are not on the left side of my tongue, where my teeth are. No -- the injury is almost at the center line of the tongue. This means that I'm biting myself because the tongue is deviating to the left side while I'm eating, and it's getting in the way of the teeth. You'd think that I would be LESS likely to bite myself on that side, since part of it was removed in the glossectomy and it takes up less space in my mouth.
My question is, why is this happening now? Is it related to the cancer (which, as far as I know, is still in remission)? Is there anything I can do (other than quit eating) to prevent the biting? How do I heal the wound when it keeps getting injured? Should I call my surgeon about this? (My next check-up is scheduled for Feb. 8.)

"Try not. Do, or do not. There is no try."
#195593 - 01/12/18 09:17 PM Re: I keep biting my tongue in same place while eating [Re: hikerdeb]  
Joined: Jun 2007
Posts: 10,155
ChristineB Offline
Administrator, Director of Patient Support Services
ChristineB  Offline
Administrator, Director of Patient Support Services
Patient Advocate (old timer, 2000 posts)

Joined: Jun 2007
Posts: 10,155
I would definitely talk it over with your surgeon at your upcoming appointment. If you keep injuring yourself again where you have alot of bleeding then you probably should have your doc check you out sooner.

I would check into seeing a speech therapist or SLP who may have some ideas about whats happening with your new issues. I know they can work wonders with speech! I had a friend who I thought sounded very close to normal but after a couple visits with a speech pathologist I could see a major improvement is her speech. They should also be able to help you with tips about eating. You will want to see someone who has years of experience, hopefully someone who has worked with OC patients before.

I would guess the numbness may be playing a part in why your biting yourself. Im sorry but I havent been thru this myself but have seen many others post similar issues after glossectomies.

Best wishes for your continued recovery.

SCC 6/15/07 L chk & by L molar both Stag I, age44
2x cispltn-35 IMRT end 9/27/07
-65 lbs in 2 mo, no caregvr
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 xtended hospital stay, ICU & burn unit
PICC line IV antibx 8 mo
10/4/10, 2/14/11 reconst surg
OC 3x in 3 years
very happy to be alive smile

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