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Looking to talk with those of you who have put Radiation Therapy in the rear view mirror !

Zorba
Posts: 5
Joined: Dec 2011

Hello,

I'm new to the network, I am half way through my radiation treatments for Squamous Cell CA primary left tonsil bed with metastasis to a few lymph nodes same side neck (T1,N2,M0 IVa).
Operated on and removed on 10-31-11, got all I'm told.

I would very much like to chat with those like me who are out 3,4 or 5 years post radiation to see what chronic side effects they were left with. I'm having a terrible time with the acute side effects and want to know quite frankly if it's worth it.....

Thanks, and God Bless.

Zorba

tracylc31's picture
tracylc31
Posts: 9
Joined: Feb 2012

Zorba,
I have asked myself many times if all of the side effects are worth it. I get my answer every time my 2 year old granddaughter hugs me and tells me she loves me.

I was diagnosed with base of tongue cancer in 2006. There is no family history, I've never smoked, so I was VERY surprised at my diagnosis. From the moment I was told I had cancer, I never once thought of it as being deadly. I don't know if it was denial or what. To this day I don't think I realize how sick I actually was. About a year after I finally began to get better, my ENT said to me, "I can tell you this now but I didn't think you were going to make it. I would have never told you that before, but I can tell you that now."

I had 2 chemo treatments and 36 radiation treatments. The doctors told me that I would get pretty sick about 5 weeks into treatment. I was so sick from day 1 that I couldn't go back to work the next day and the whole following year. The side effects that I have to this day are: my tongue is still quite sore. I have a lot of scar tissue. I still get ulcers and thrush. It's difficult to eat and many days I still can't. I can not eat anything spicy or acidity. It's difficult to swallow my food because my throat muscle do not work right. My salivary glands were destroyed which aids in the difficulty with eating. I must take a drink of water with every bite of food in order to get it down. So because I am pretty malnourished, I usually feel pretty cruddy.

But I am here. And like I said there are many days I question whether it was worth it. Then I see my granddaughter and realize it was worth every second.

I wish I would have been a member sooner and seen your post. I do hope you finished your treatments and that you are doing well. Please let me know how you are doing. I would love to talk to you more. Most people don't understand why I would question if it was worth it and it would be nice to have someone to talk to about this.

jimmyfreaky
Posts: 1
Joined: May 2012

this is amazing i like it

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