Jun 06, 2009 - 12:39 pm
I'm a five year survivor (so far) of squamous cell carcinoma in the base of the tongue. Everything was going well until the summer of 2007. That's when I started having difficulty swallowing due to the radiation treatments back in 2004. My neck tissue was hard as a rock. I've been having esophogeal dilitations monthly since June of 2007.
In February, I started taking oxygen chamber treatments with the hope that it would improve salivation and swallowing. I can feel the difference in the softening of the neck tissue. My gastroenterologist confirms this by saying it is now easier to fully dilate me.
Unfortunately, I've been having more trouble swallowing recently. The throat muscles don't seem to do anything. I have to literally wash the food down with milk. Also, the saliva production doesn't seem to have improved.
I've been through 77 treatments so far and I think the doctor wants to go up to 120. I'm wondering whether it is worth continuing. Has anyone out there shown improvement in these areas after treatment?