Jan 27, 2010 - 1:18 pm
Possible Side Effect Assistance
Head, Neck and Sinus
It's been 3 years since my radiation and chemo treatments ended and I was pronounced amazingly healed for the moment, as we all have learned to avoid the CURED word! Since then, like many of us have suffered with post treatment side effects. Mine are constant dry mouth, dry / clogged sinuses in the AM, eyes can't handle wind, chemo /radiation brain (-:, and fatigue. (Treatment for massive sinus tumor - full frontal and right maxillary - most all side effects due to 33 radiation treatments)
Over those years, I've been fortunate to come across some product or advice from fellow cancer survivors, which helps tremendously and I would like to share my discoveries. My doctors are quick to point out to me, NOT to play doctor, so let me say upfront I am simply a patient and NOT a doctor, nor do I play one on TV!
Dry Mouth - I've tried everything. The overwhelmingly best product I have found is a simple stick of Stride gum. Last for hours and keeps me from needing my sippie cup like my 2 year old grand daughter does as I'm 51. Before discovering Stride gum by total chance, I would panic if more than 5 feet from my water.
Fatigue - Your doctors will check or send you to a Endocrinologist to have your Thyroid levels checked. My levels were fine, but it took me hours to get up and get active most every morning. Then a fellow cancer survivor asked me about my Testosterone level. I had it checked and it was extremely low. My family doctor didn't know how I even got out of bed, it was so low. I tried Testosterone shots every 3 weeks, but my BCBS which pays 100% after deductible, would not pay for injections. I later switched to a rub in gel called AndroGel, which BCBS amazingly paid for. My levels are still low, but much higher than before and I can get up and function much better each morning.
Dry / Clogged Sinuses - A simple sinus flush bottle filled with distilled water, a squeeze of Johnson's Baby Shampoo and one packet of sinus rinse powder. One squirt up each nostril and allow to drain over sink. Then pinch off one side and blow like a gale force wind out of the other! Repeat for other side. It's not pretty, but it's wonderful to I breathe again!
Stride Gum, AndroGel and a Sinus Rinse!
Some of these may be common knowledge, but if not, I hope this brings some of you much needed relief. If any of you have other solutions I'd love to hear about them!