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Just had Neck dissection , need a question answered

ricklevans
Posts: 14
Joined: Feb 2009

First of all I wanted to say thank you to soccerfreaks, SASH & Victor for easing my mind about the neck dissection. All went well, they did a right side neck dissection and removed a mass and from what I'm being told , close to 100 nodes. All nodes removed were clean and the mass was dead.

The question I have is how long before the swelling goes down, I had my surgery on March 19th, came home on the 21st with drain tubes and stitches, all were removed on March 27th. The only real problem I'm having is the swallon lump under my chin, will this go away?

SASH's picture
SASH
Posts: 276
Joined: Apr 2006

Lymph nodes are the bodies way of doing drainage. Since you had a bunch removed it will take the body a while to adjust and use different ones to do the drainage. It will eventually go down. After my surgery, I looked like Curious George because of all the swelling. I'm now back to normal, well as normal as I will ever be. It has only been a short time since your surgery so it will take some time for your body to heal. Don't rush it.

bogey4on17's picture
bogey4on17
Posts: 6
Joined: Apr 2003

The swelling isn't permanent, although at times it will seem as though it is. Don't know where you live or were treated but lymphatic massage definitely helps. It was available where I was treated at Huntsman Cancer Institute in Salt Lake City. Not only did they do a fantastic job, they taught my wife how to do it so we could continue treatment at home. You might want to call HCI for recommendations. The massage really works (takes down the swelling), and feels pretty darned good as well. After all the abuse you've had inflicted upon you by the "professionals," you deserve something that feels good!

I had radical resections (both necks) for my Stage IV H&N cancer and it took a while for the swelling to go down but, and here's the point, it did go back to normal. I have to wear a lymphedema compression garment around my face, head, and neck when I'm involved in strenuous athletics (I'm into endurance cycling), but it's a minor inconvenience. It beats the crap out of waking up dead!

Normal is right around the corner, so hang in there! We do get to take our lives back.

All my best,

Jeff

joolivermesplay
Posts: 21
Joined: Oct 2008

I don't know what that surgery is like , but I can tell you my husband had a muscle graft done , that was swollen at least 6 weeks and he still has soreness in his chest 6 months later ,where they took the muscle from ..Jo

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