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#201598 11-07-2022 07:44 AM
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Hi: I was wondering if anyone has had head and neck radiation 3 times? In 2007 I had IMRT for early stage rt tonsil cancer and in 2016 I had brachytherapy for left base of tongue caner. After a clear Petscan in March 2021.....I found out 2 months ago that I have a 3cm tumor in same location as 2016 tumor.....right base of tongue. Thank you in advance. Best Rick


11/2007: Tonsil SCC (early) IMRT
06/2016: BOT SCC : Brachytherapy
12/2020: Supraglottic Small Tumor: TLM
09/2022: Recurrent BOT: Checking out 2nd Opinion
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Radiating tissues multiple times can have very negative consequences. Not the least of which is severe tissue necrosis and resulting healing issues. That said as you know from a second go around with a different radiation idea; very localized brachytherapy can sometimes be used, though it’s a very old idea and controlling the exact area impacted is not super controllable. You have one thing going in your favor. The IMRT map is still likely available. The amount of radiation this new area received is less knowable but may not have been heavily radiated.

It is likely that they might discourage you from doing this. What kills the cancer could also leave you with life long chronic issues. I do not know of any patients I’ve talked to over the last two decades that have had three goes at RT.

Please let us know how this pans out and what is decided. We can all learn from your experience. B


Brian, stage 4 oral cancer survivor. OCF Founder and Director. The first responsibility of a leader is to define reality. The last is to say thank you. In between, the leader is a servant.
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I have. But not really. 2 were full strength- 2004 and 2008. I ended up with my third major surgery Jan / 22 After that surgery a patoid gland became wildly overactive so the radiation oncologist gave the gland 5 little “love taps” to slow down the saliva.

I still have some saliva which is okay but I am not dripping on the floor every time I bend over!

So I can say I have had 3 masks; 32 scatter radiation in 2004; 30 IMRT other side 2008 and 5 little doses in 2023.

Last edited by Pandora99; 04-04-2023 09:03 PM. Reason: Typos

Donna,69, SCC L Tongue T2N1MO Stg IV 4/04 w/partial gloss;32 radtx; T2N2M0 Stg IV; R tongue-2nd partial gloss w/graft 10/07; 30 radtx/2 cispl 2/08. 3rd Oral Cancer surgery 1/22 - Stage 1. 2022 surgery eliminated swallowing and bottom left jaw. Now a “Tubie for Life”.no food envy - Thank God! Surviving isn't easy!!!! .Proudly Canadian - YES, UNIVERSAL HEALTH CARE IS WONDERFUL! (Not perfect but definitely WONDERFUL)
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Good luck. My two initial radiation applications were on opposite sides of my mouth.

Interested - long term side effect if my 2004 scatter radiation was that it might have been the cause of the 2022 cancer

In that surgery - I list my bottom left jaw and most of my teeth as well as the ability to swallow. So while the cancer was Stage 2 (as opposed to Stage 4 previously) that surgery had the greatest impact.

I have a permanent feeding tube for life - which I am dealing with okay ( no food envy) but my speech with my denture in is awful. I speak much better without teeth! I am also looking into so facial reconstruction so that I have a more neutral appearance and not a miserable”resting b*** face)! The facial deformity from the 3rd surgery scares children


Donna,69, SCC L Tongue T2N1MO Stg IV 4/04 w/partial gloss;32 radtx; T2N2M0 Stg IV; R tongue-2nd partial gloss w/graft 10/07; 30 radtx/2 cispl 2/08. 3rd Oral Cancer surgery 1/22 - Stage 1. 2022 surgery eliminated swallowing and bottom left jaw. Now a “Tubie for Life”.no food envy - Thank God! Surviving isn't easy!!!! .Proudly Canadian - YES, UNIVERSAL HEALTH CARE IS WONDERFUL! (Not perfect but definitely WONDERFUL)
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