Feb 10, 2011 - 1:49 pm
Last week I got my first post-treatment PET back and was clean. Yeah! So this week we did the long-anticipated cleanup of the battlefield. The surgeon went into the neck to clean out the lymph node which had been cancerous and which is now shriveled up and dead from the rads as well as its downstream neighbors. As such things go, it was pretty minor (they say) and he didn’t work on nerves or muscles or anything else.
That was Tues and I came home yesterday. Now I have these two very ugly drains sticking out of the side of my neck leading to these bags that are suspended from my shirt. I am trying not to think about them and have only looked once in the mirror. The teenage girl finds them a bit scary though the teenage boy thinks they are kinda cool, of course. I think they hurt physically and psychologically. As usual, it falls to my good wife to take care of them, emptying the bags, applying the antibiotic to the wound, etc. I am hoping to at least get rid of the drains tomorrow so that I only have to put up with the stitches and scars.
Meanwhile, the neck is stiff and sore and so is the jaw. I also have numbness of the ear but they say this will pass because they were very careful not to do anything to that nerve other than push it around a bit. It may, in fact, already be better than yesterday.
So, I guess my question is: is this normal? How long did you have your drains and how long did you have your stitches and active scars? Did you do PT afterward? How is it now?
BTW, I played hockey Saturday night...poorly and stiffly but I played. Now I’m set back again a week or so.