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Mouth Cancer Questions

Fargo
Posts: 2
Joined: Sep 2005

I am new to the group and have lots of questions about recovery after radiation. It's only been 3 weeks since my radiation has ended and I had hoped to feel a lot better then this by now. Maybe I'm in for a big surprise. Anyone else out there that has had 7 weeks of radiation to the face and neck that could answer some of my questions?

umass
Posts: 2
Joined: Jul 2005

Hi, I also went through about 7 weeks of radiation w/ chemo. the lower half of my face and all of the neck were affected and I know how tough it is, especially right after the treatments end. i kind of expected the recovery to be a lot quicker than it actually was. it will get better for you, probably in a few more weeks. my last treatment was in january and I am doing terrific now. I have the dry mouth that I'm sure you have heard all about but I am able to eat and swallow very well. I actually eat almost everything that I used to eat but I stay away from thick breads and other dry foods, I hope you like pasta its my new best friend. I had my feeding tube removed about 3 months ago, once that was gone I really got motivated to start trying different foods. Like I said, it will definitely get better for you but it will probably take some time, people that don't know me say they would have never guessed that I went through all of that treatment now. I did have trouble with my tongue right after treatment and I went through hyperbaric oxygen therapy that seemed to work miracles for my recovery but the tongue problem I had was a unique one (grey, dead looking tissue). If you any specific questions I would be happy to give you any info that I have. its a long tough process and very frustrating but it sounds like you've already been through the worst and it should only get better from here.

Goegs
Posts: 6
Joined: Oct 2005

Hi, I also finished my treatment at the end of January.(35 IMRT radiation treatments, 3 rounds of Cisplatin) The hardest period for me was the month after treatment. I lost 40 lbs total after it was all said and done. (went from 160 to 120) I never had a feeding tube. I am now eating most anything that I want to and I agree with umass about the bread. It takes alot of time and patience, I still do not have my taste back in it's pre cancer state. I can taste food when it first goes in my mouth but then it disappears. I used to love to eat, but now I eat to survive. I have gained back ten pounds at theis writing but I have lost 40 yards off my driver, and 15 yards off my irons in golf and 20 pins off my average in bowling. The good news is I'm still participating in both. Hang in there, IT WILL GET BETTER.

msnorberg
Posts: 10
Joined: Feb 2001

I went through a similar series of radiation treatments, but probably every case is unique. I remember that during and shortly after treatments the only thing I could eat without rather severe pain was cooked cereal. Eventually I was able to eat anything. I started carrying a water bottle at all times. A water bottle holster was given to me. That was one of the most useful items I have ever owned. I still carry a bottle with a holster. Make sure you take meticulus care of your teeth with brushing, flossing, and fluoride; and cool it with the sugar. It is indeed a slow recovery process. Hang in there and probably listen to what your body tells you it wants.

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