Hi, I haven't been here in a long time. Too long. I remember the ropey gunk quite well, they even provided a portable suction machine when I was home. I now have enough saliva during the day to affect my speech (most of the time). My mouth gets dry at night, but not extremely so. It also gets dry when I sing with the choir. I did not lose the saliva production on the left side of my mouth, only the right.
I notice that the excess saliva is greater when I take liquified food in addition to my Jevity. I think my body / mouth is saying "Thank was a neat trick... give me more to eat"
I should explain that I can swallow most food if I chew it enough first, and I can take most liquids by mouth, if I am careful. However I have had aspiration pneumonia several times, and I am "twice scared four times careful". Too careful I guess. My SLP said I was on the cusp about 3 months after radiation: I could either eat all the time and do my exercises as though I were training for the Olympics, or I would slip into G-tube dependency. So I am dependent.
There's more I could share of my own story, but I have one suggestion (if you haven't heard it already). Try drinking or rinsing with carbonated beverages. It really makes my mouth a more friendly environment.
SCC, HPV-related P16 Stage III T1N1M0
(prim. site rt base of tongue, 1.5 cm, 1 lymph node, nearly 3 cm)
Rad neck dissection 5/19/17 no probs
TORS 5/26/17 remove rt tonsil and divot at rt base of tongue
Arterial bleed at surgical site 5/31/17, 5 days intubated and sedated
Asp. pneumonia, hosp acquired pneumonia, DVTs
Tot 13 days in ICU
31 days targeted rad, until 9/21/17
CAT/CT 2/1/18 No evidence of disease
Swollen tongue and throat, diff to swallow
Still G-tube dep
Very grateful to be alive