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Just Diagnosed Squamous Cell Carcinoma of Neck with unknown primary

cureitall66's picture
cureitall66
Posts: 868
Joined: Aug 2012

A loved one was just diagnosed with Squamous Cell Carcinoma of the Neck with unknown primary. The path report states loose fragments of poorly differentiated malignant epithelial cells with enlarged hyperchromatic irregular nuclei and apoptosis are seen in a hemorragic background that includes few scattered atypical keratinized squamous cells. Few scattered macrophages are also noted. The ENT mentioned he saw a spot on the tonsillar (base of tongue) and this could be the primary. Going in this Monday for surgery for Laryngoscopy (further biopsies). Could anyone tell me if they know what stage this could be at? His first and only sympton was a swollen area of the neck. Doctor treated with antibiotics initially and no difference. This has been going on about 45-60 days from initial notice of neck. Any advice out there that I could give him. He is scared, anxious, and emotional. Wondering what we couldn't expect for a prognosis? Any shared experiences would be helpful.

phrannie51's picture
phrannie51
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Joined: Mar 2012

Of course he is scraed, anxious and emotional....it goes with the territory, and there is not one person here who wouldn't relate. It sounds to me like he got diagnosed in the same way many of us here were...lump on the neck sends us to an ENT, who biopsies it and tells us we have Squamous Cell. That's precisely how it happened with me...treated with anti-biotics first, then referred to the specialist.

At this juncture, it's the hurry up and wait game....the hardest part...I know I wanted the cancer out of me NOW, and had to get a PET scan, more appointments with radiation doc, Oncologist, etc...getting everything set up took 5 weeks...I was a wreck waiting for treatment to get started.

I'm not a Dr. of course, but it seems when a swollen lymph node in the neck is the first signal, it usually staged at a III or a IV. You'll see, tho....there are many MANY people here who are survivors so tell him not to panic at the stage.

p

Billie67's picture
Billie67
Posts: 834
Joined: Jul 2012

I am sorry for your friend and the stress he is going thru. While my cancer came about in a different way than your friends did it seemed to take a while to finally get the treatment started, it's hard being a patient patient. I will tell you that my cancer was stage IV BUT both of my oncologists told me that staging in the head and neck is much different than staging in other areas of the body. It's not the same as stage IV somewhere else so I hope that will give you both some comfort. Now that you know that you should know that Phrannie is right, there are SO many success stories on this site. H&N cancer treatments have come a long way and have been very successful. That doesn't mean that we don't get scared and nervous because we all do. Thankfully there are many here who pick us up and help us get on the right track.
Come back here with any more questions or concerns and the wonderful people on here will help you out...I know they've helped me many times.
Billie

CivilMatt's picture
CivilMatt
Posts: 3022
Joined: May 2012

Hi cureitall66,

For me, Stage IVa SCC, HPV+, lower tongue and one lymph node left side of neck (click on CIVILMATT for details).

I felt a lump will shaving, went immediately to the doctor, got past around like a hot potato and was offered surgery, radiation and chemo. I chose all three and I am glad I did. When I saw the ENT, he discovered a spot on my tongue and my neck was obvious. After a fine needle biopsy and lateral neck dissection of the Jugular Vein, the cat was out of the bag. The doctor kept a pretty tight secrete until he was positive (there was a chance it was a cyst). Now at 22 weeks post I am doing well. I sleep very good, I am on no pain medication, I have little saliva, I tire easily and have a (temporary) lack of taste buds. Matter-of-fact, I took out a can of Crisco Shortening today, held it up in front of my parents and brother and told them “this is what many foods taste like to me”. Joe blow and his friends just don’t understand “no taste buds”, but my friends here do.

Anyway, I ramble on, but thanks to treatments I can still ramble on.

Best,

Matt

cureitall66's picture
cureitall66
Posts: 868
Joined: Aug 2012

Civilmatt,

Wondering when you were diagnosed? I see you are not going through treatment and 22 weeks post, so you were diagnosed approx 22 weeks ago then? Are you considered cancer free at this point?

ToBeGolden's picture
ToBeGolden
Posts: 697
Joined: Aug 2010

I welcome your loved one to the club nobody wants to be a member. Your health care team will pull your loved one through. My only hint: food/liquids were less painful when they were at body temperature (like preparing a bottle for a baby.) Actually my wife had to teach/remind me about checking the temperature on my arm. Everyone is different, but for me anything either cold or hot was more painful. Of course your loved one will get pain medications and maybe the magic mouth wash depending upon his/her particular condition.

fisrpotpe's picture
fisrpotpe
Posts: 1341
Joined: Aug 2010

I also had SCC with unknown, that was 16 plus years ago. i was taught then and still believe now that it's not about stage's or about percentages of survivorship. it's about one or the other... survive or not and if you believe you will survive you will. Positive Mental Attitude is huge with winning the war against any cancer.

from what i have seen with self and others close being scared, anxious and emotional is very much the norm.

prayers going out for wisdom for you, your loved one and the doctor's.

john

cureitall66's picture
cureitall66
Posts: 868
Joined: Aug 2012

Thank you all for your comments and suggestions. I will share this with him. This coming week will give us more of an idea where we will be at in terms of where the cancer is. I will keep you posted. I sure hope they find that the tongue(where the saw the other spot) is the primary and it has not gotten anywhere else. I have faith that this will turn out well. Does anyone know if the ENT will automatically test for the HPV? I've obviously read so much on the internet and found it in almost every article. He is not a smoker and a light drinker, so those do not seem to fit the risk here.

D Lewis's picture
D Lewis
Posts: 1540
Joined: Jan 2010

Hi Curitall,

Not all ENTs will automatically test for HPV. I had to ask mine to do so. Tonsillar/Base of Tongue malignancies are the ones most likely to be related to HPV - as these areas in the body are very active in the immune system. Please do ask to have the test done.

I was diagnosed with Stage 4 HPV+ Base of Tongue SCC with mets to multiple lymph nodes on both sides of the neck. I am now 2 years 3 months post treatment and doing great so far. No recurrances, no more mets. Hoping for the best for your loved one and you.

Deb

cureitall66's picture
cureitall66
Posts: 868
Joined: Aug 2012

Hi Deb,

The Tonsillar/Base of Tongue is the suspicious area as thought to be the primary. I can't believe that ENT's wouldn't know to check this automatically as it seems to be in everything I read regarding the neck (with lymph node involved) and then the base of tongue looking suspicious. But we will be sure to ask. My understanding is that if it is HPV related, there is a greater response. Were you told this?

Cureitall66

D Lewis's picture
D Lewis
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Joined: Jan 2010

I took my case to Stanford Cancer Center for a second opinion, and the first question they asked was if I'd been tested for HPV. I said yes, and it was positive. They said "congratulations". HPV+ SCC responds more completely to chemo/radiation, and is less likely to recur, according to recent studies. Stanford is doing a study to compare whether a reduced/less intense treatment will bring about as complete a cure. This is in the hopes that they can minimize the long-term side effects and deficits that result from the full course of treatment. Even now, knowing what effects I have, I would NOT opt for a reduced treatment. I don't want this thing to recur.

Deb

boardwalkgirl
Posts: 263
Joined: Jun 2012

I was diagnosed with Stage IV HPV+ squamous cell carcinoma after surgery to remove what they thought was a branchial cleft cyst. I had already had an ultrasound, cat scan and needle biopsy before surgery which they said was benign. Two ENTs had agreed so imagine my shock. They have since done a MRI of the head and neck and PET Scan which were both clear. SO I have unknown primary, they tell me there are a lot of times they never find the primary. I had my surgery April 20th and did not start chemo and radiation until June 11th. I completed treatment August 3rd and now in the recovery stage. I believe in the positive attitude gets you thru it better. They tell me at the Oncology and Radiation Center they have never had any one come thru this treatment as well as I did. I read everything I could find before hand so I was prepared for the worse so think I was happy when it wasn't that bad. It is tough but come here often for answers and support and your friend will make it thru. Prayers being sent your way.

RushFan's picture
RushFan
Posts: 218
Joined: Aug 2010

Sounds very familiar. Your friend should do very well...the waiting is the worst.
I too was diagnosed with an unknown primary in January 2010. BTW; I'm a white male, 49 yrs old at time of diagnosis. Do not smoke or drink at all.

I had a swollen lymph node that was a concern after not responding to two rounds of antibiotics.
My ENT then ordered fine needle biopsies etc. The pathologist knew it was cancerous, but was not able to determine type, so my ENT surgically removed the lymph node and sent off slides to Mayo Clinic. Mayo identified it as SCC. I was then refered to M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston. (fortunately, I live 30 miles north of Houston).

After Right & Left tonsil biopsies and base of tongue biopsies under anesthesia-no primary was found, M.D. Anderson staged me HPV+ T0 N2b M0.

I was given the option of adding chemo to the standard protocol radiation treatments as the lymph node had extracapsular growth. I opted for chemo...to throw "the kitchen sink" at the cancer and destroy it!

Since there was an unknown primary, I was radiated across the pharyngeal axis.
Treatments were: Radiation Mon-Fri for seven weeks (35 treatments) and Cisplatin-seven infusions... every Monday for seven weeks.

I did not have a feeding tube, but it was tough toward the end. I started at 210 lbs, finished at 175 lbs. Pain is rough...stay ahead of it with meds. Keep up as best you can with calorie consumption. I survived on Ensure and Boost for several weeks...it can be done!

I Completed treatments 4/30/2010, I was back at work part-time in June, full time in July.

My doctors gave me a great deal of possitive feedback and a very good prognosis.
I was very positive through this tough experience, my wife was unbelievable...so were neighbors, friends, co-workers and church members.

I have come through this extremely well and feel very lucky / blessed to have done so.

Today...I'm at 200 lbs. Working out a few times a week. Energy is super. Salivary function is at about 70% of "normal".

All the best to your friend!

cureitall66's picture
cureitall66
Posts: 868
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Thanks for sharing your story. It means a lot to hear such positive information come out of this ugly thing called cancer.

cureitall66's picture
cureitall66
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RushFan,

Were you given a stage (ie. I, II, etc.) other than HPV+TO N2b MO ?

cureitall66's picture
cureitall66
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ENT found only one suspicious area to biopsy....the base of the tongue, as he thought could be primary. Results hopefully Wednesday. He said he looked everywhere within the area and saw nothing else to biopsy. Hope this is even more good news. I'm wondering if this path report will indicate the possible cause/strain (if HPV)? I'm hearing some say to ask the ENT and some say the path found it.

D Lewis's picture
D Lewis
Posts: 1540
Joined: Jan 2010

It is a separate test to determine HPV status. In my case, they tested for HPV genetic materials within the tumor cells, so my samples had to be sent off to a special lab. I'm not sure if there are other tests to determine HPV status. There is a result for "P-16" that is supposed to strongly correlate with HPV Status, i.e. if P-16 is positive, you are very likely to also be HPV-16/18 positive. These are the two strains of HPV most likely to cause cancer.

Deb

josh r.
Posts: 200
Joined: Oct 2010

I hope you feel better after having all the wonderful in-put from this wonderful site. I was also treated for scc, stage iv, in July-November of 1991. Just imagine what the medical world knows nearly 21 years later! I pray for and wish you and your friend the best of all possible results. Josh r.

josh r.
Posts: 200
Joined: Oct 2010

I hope you feel better after having all the wonderful in-put from this wonderful site. I was also treated for scc, stage iv, in July-November of 1991. Just imagine what the medical world knows nearly 21 years later! I pray for and wish you and your friend the best of all possible results. Josh r.

cureitall66's picture
cureitall66
Posts: 868
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Everyone's stories here are such a great inspiration to those of us just finding out our loved ones are just being diagnosed. The waiting is incredibly emotional. Knowing there are successful endings is so gratifying. God Bless you for sharing and your recovery..

cureitall66's picture
cureitall66
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Tomorrow we will get the Path report after the tongue biopsy. I don't know if this will tell us the primary site for certain as the ENT has thought or what. Having faith that it is all within the neck and base of tongue and nowhere else. I was thinking they would do a PET scan, but ENT said probably not. Wondering why this is? Wouldn't we want to know if the cancer has traveled? Or will this last biopsy tell us this? The ENT felt it was all caught early so we're hoping it is a low stage. Is this cancer known to spread anywhere else quickly?

Thank you all for your kind words of encouragement. I've been sharing this with him. He can't even get himself to really want to write or read about any of it at this point.....so I'm just trying to pass things along the best I can.

VivianLee5689's picture
VivianLee5689
Posts: 546
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Well it seems like we are about the same place in the process. My husband just received his pathology report on the biopsies they did last week. They found a mass on the base of his tongue, but we have a while longer to find out if he is hpv positive. I look forward to getting to know you.

cureitall66's picture
cureitall66
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VivianLee5689,

You are certainly not alone. As caregivers, we are just as anxious for answers as our loved ones. I look forward to sharing our experiences together...as it sounds like they are so similar. Hang in there...

cureitall66's picture
cureitall66
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As we thought, the biopsy shows the base of the tongue to also be cancer. The ENT is assuming this is the primary site, but could not say for certain. He also mentioned the possibility of HPV. Wondering how long and at what point they will test this. Seems like it is an important factor to consider before starting treatment. According to what I've read on line, that if it is HPV involved, that the response to treatment seems to be better. Anyone told that? Next step is to go to U of M and get another opinion and probably stick with them for treatment. We are hoping they can get him in within a week. The ENT has already started the process. So now we're just waiting again. This is getting difficult in keeping him at ease and to decrease the anxiety. He (loved one) is worried it has or will travel somewhere else if it's not addressed quickly. He's also concerned if the tongue is the primary...

VivianLee5689's picture
VivianLee5689
Posts: 546
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We were told being hpv positive was a good thing. They starte testing the biopsied mass for the presence of hpv last Tuesday. As of yesterday the results were still not in. I am anxiously awaiting our results as well. We were told that based on having cancer at the base of the tongue and the lymph nodes involved that they believed they had found the primary.

cureitall66's picture
cureitall66
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The waiting is so hard during this process. That is interesting that you got the same opinion of the tongue being primary. Everything I read,(and I try not to necessarily hold everything I read on line to be accurate),but I found that if the neck was the noticed spot, it is usually secondary with the tongue being the primary. I hope this is all holds true and it is all within that area. Wondering if there has ever been a "different" primary with this kind of situation. So many questions.....so few answers. Frustrating, isn't it?!

phrannie51's picture
phrannie51
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I remember well....the cancer doesn't travel as fast as our imaginations tell us...thank god, and I remember every one here telling me to just hang on, that treatment will begin soon enough. Once begun it's whirlwind of never ending appointments....

p

cureitall66's picture
cureitall66
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I actually had to use your line here about "the cancer doesn't travel as fast as our imaginations tell us" yesterday. He was having a bad day and said all he could think about while waiting for his first Onocologist appt is how fast it may be growing while he waits. Thank you for sharing that statement with me. It really helped a lot!

cureitall66's picture
cureitall66
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I actually had to use your line here about "the cancer doesn't travel as fast as our imaginations tell us" yesterday. He was having a bad day and said all he could think about while waiting for his first Oncologist appt is how fast it may be growing while he waits. Thank you for sharing that statement with me. It really helped a lot!

VivianLee5689's picture
VivianLee5689
Posts: 546
Joined: Aug 2012

We were told being hpv positive was a good thing. They starte testing the biopsied mass for the presence of hpv last Tuesday. As of yesterday the results were still not in. I am anxiously awaiting our results as well. We were told that based on having cancer at the base of the tongue and the lymph nodes involved that they believed they had found the primary.

Skiffin16's picture
Skiffin16
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OK...

As far as I know and have read, etc....

HPV can only be determined through biopsy (cell tissue)... My ENT diagnosed me and treated me (removed the tonsils)... SCC was suspected that first exam, and more than likely HPV derived as I was never a tobacco user.

I saw him on a Friday, tonsils came out on Monday...STGIII SCC from a quick biopsy that day. He sent the tissue out and two weeks later let me know that it was HPV+.

As for responding to treatment, yes, I have heard similar... But keep in mind, cancer is cancer. As for now I don't know of any lesser approved treatments if you have HPV derived cancer.

I know I certainly wouldn't want to take a lesser treatment at this time.

Anyways, those are my understandings....

I'm not trying to be negative or a positive mood buster... But any way you cut it, it's still cancer, the treatment is the same an it's rough, but doable.

BTW, my primary was the tonsils with a secondary lymphnode on the same side.

JG

Viilik70's picture
Viilik70
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I had the same thing when I was 25 and I had an enlarged lymph node in the neck which was removed and checked, It was the same squamous cell. I believe mine was stage II since it went from an unknown primary to a lymph node. Needless to say I survived with radiation treatment and it was tough but made it though with flying colors. I'm now 42 and had to go through it again because it showed up in my nasopharynx, so I had proton radiation this time and I am three years out from treatment. I've made it through twice so this cancer is highly treatable so please just put your faith in God because He has taken me through all of this and have been very blessed in the process! :)

cureitall66's picture
cureitall66
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Does anyone know if the HPV SCC is contagious at any point?

Skiffin16's picture
Skiffin16
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Studies show that around 80% of the general population have been exposed to HPV. There is no cure, but usually your body rids it within a few years, or at least to uneasurable levels....

As far as I understand, they haven't exactly pin pointed the mode of absolute transmission... It could be as simple as kissing.

Also, it appears that it might lie dormant within for years and or never manifest, or through stress, a weakened immune system, etc...become active and eventually cancer.

I haven't really heard of any concerns from my MD's on me passing it on to my wife... In fact most feel that it has cleared itself through treatment for the cancer..not sure.

There isn't any specific test for men that I'm aware, other than tissue biopsy of a suspect problem. Women can on some do have HPV checked as part of their annual pap smear exams (from my understanding).

As for passing on SCC, I don't think so....

HPV and SCC are two different diseases.... You can have HPV and never get cancer, and you can have SCC and not have HPV, and you can have HPV derived SCC.

JG

cureitall66's picture
cureitall66
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Yes, I figured the cancer would not be contagious, but wondering since the HPV that they have related is HPV 16+ is in fact contagious to others? I guess that may be a question to the Onocologist or MD?

Joel4's picture
Joel4
Posts: 209
Joined: May 2010

I was diagnosed SCC unknown primary two years and 4 months ago after finding a lump in my neck while shaving.
The lump was a swollen lymph node so I had a left neck dissection and tonsillectomy.
39 nodes were removed and only the was positive for cancer.
Pathology results were as good as can be expected and I had no rads or chemo. Two years and 4 months later I am doing great and feel better than I have since my twenties (I'm 41 now).
Tell your friend to stay positive and hope for the best. I have a very strong faith in God that I feel was the key for me but fear is a beast the we all must contend with. My mind raced with worst case scenarios at times but it is important to stay positive and believe that all will be well.
As far as the HPV thing goes, yes it is contagious but almost all of us are exposed to it at some point in our lives and only a very small few end up with cancer. For most folks it just runs its course and goes away and in my opinion is not worth worrying about.
I'll be praying for your friend!

Joel

cureitall66's picture
cureitall66
Posts: 868
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Joel,

Your experience is very encouraging. Thank you for sharing it. It means a lot to hear such positive things. What a process some of us must go through in life. I think it will make us stronger and better individuals in the long run. God Bless you and thank you.

Skiffin16's picture
Skiffin16
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See what they have to tell you...

JG

blackswampboy's picture
blackswampboy
Posts: 341
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well yeah...HPV is a sexually-transmitted contagious virus.
that's why Gardasil vaccinations are important not just for girls, but boys too--every vaccinated person helps reduce the spread. my 20-year-old son signed up for vaccinations, bless him.

cureitall66's picture
cureitall66
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Joined: Aug 2012

It's obvious that's how it came about(by being contagious). My question is it has possibly lied dormant for so long and something triggered it to become cancer at some point....so obviously anyone in close contact (sexually) would be exposed in someway...but what about a child just giving their dad a kiss... I guess I should have made myself more clear...my brain has just been rattled and I sometimes think everyone is thinking the same thing I am.

blackswampboy's picture
blackswampboy
Posts: 341
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pardon, no intent to suggest the question was dumb.
just shamelessly wanted to drop a plug for vaccinations.

can't be sure...but reckon I most likely picked up the virus sometime between 1997 and 2001. dormant for over 10 years, yikes! scary, thinking about whether we may have unknowingly passed it on to others.

cureitall66's picture
cureitall66
Posts: 868
Joined: Aug 2012

Although we do not know exactly that it is HPV16+ derived at this time, the ENT is only speculating it is a good possibility as he is not a smoker or heavy drinker. We are thinking if it is, it stems from a very long time ago and just lied dormant. Since there is so much uncertainty from doctors relating to HPV16+, seems all we can do is guess a bit. But, I think to myself, does it really matter where it came from? I just want to focus on how to cure the cancer that has possibly stem from it. I understand that if it is HPV related that the response is good.....what a way to wish/hope it's HPV derived.

If you don't mind me asking, has your spouse or significant other been tested prior or after the diagnosis? If you choose not to answer, that's fine or you can private message me. I'm just curious for our own situation.

God Bless you for taking the time to share your thoughts and experiences with me and others.

blackswampboy's picture
blackswampboy
Posts: 341
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yes, curing the cancer is our priority now. heartfelt wishes for your loved one's speedy recovery.
my chemo onc was pretty certain of HPV-16 at my first meeting with him, and testing confirmed. it matters only because prognosis is pretty good for HPV-associated throat cancer. small blessings. ;-)

also, I do not want my son (or anybody for that matter) to have to go through what I've gone through. not to mention, my son's dear 21-year-old GF! she is the reason for his vaccination.
knowing what we already know, many HPV-associated cancers should be largely preventable.

I'm single (divorced), which makes tracking more complicated. even worse, my younger days were spent overseas, and tracking down former significant others is nigh impossible.
have you discussed getting tested for HPV with a doctor? (edit: never mind, I see your response below about HPV-16 detection with routine PAP smears. thank god for that.)

cureitall66's picture
cureitall66
Posts: 868
Joined: Aug 2012

I was wondering if anyone knew of any other test for HPV 16+ detection was available other than the standard finding it through a woman's routine PAP. Seems to me if your partner has the HPV16 + virus which led to the cancer, then the current partner is obviously exposed to that virus.

cureitall66's picture
cureitall66
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I too, have made sure my 20+ yr olds have been vaccinated and discussed in depth how important it is...

Skiffin16's picture
Skiffin16
Posts: 8097
Joined: Sep 2009

Please don't ever think any question is dumb or not worth asking.....

Now you might get some ribbing or teasing, but it's all in fun....and we all know your're gonna have thick skin if you go through radiaiton like a lot of us, LOL....

As for your question....on lying dormant.

Mine would be a prime example..

If I got it sexually transmitted, it had to be over 20+ years ago (my marriage time frame) before I was Dx STGIII SCC HPV+.

Since (and prior) to Dx, my wife has been checked every year, and has never had HPV show up.

JG

cureitall66's picture
cureitall66
Posts: 868
Joined: Aug 2012

How is the HPV tested among the rest of us that do not have the cancer as you state your wife has been checked every year? My understanding is that the lower HPV's are usually hard to detect unless you get genital warts, the the higher HPV's (16 +) are found in our routine Pap's as they are the HPV Cancer virus's....but maybe I'm wrong.

Skiffin16's picture
Skiffin16
Posts: 8097
Joined: Sep 2009

That's what I was referring as for my wife being tested....

Other than tissue from a biopsy of a suspect area, which would be more a biopsy for cancer, not HPV, I only have heard of one test which is supposed to detect HPV..., but I haven't researched that claim.

It's some oral swab performed at the dentist.

JG

cureitall66's picture
cureitall66
Posts: 868
Joined: Aug 2012

I did read that some dentists have some type of "blue light" that they can use to detect oral warts, etc....but not sure if that was for detecting the HPV in itself.

blackswampboy's picture
blackswampboy
Posts: 341
Joined: Jul 2012

my understanding is that without a biopsy, there is still no 'easy' HPV test for men.
but for men or women, you can run an HPV DNA test from biopsy tissue. I'm certain that I had testing following biopsy for HPV-16.

so when the mayo clinic site says:

"The HPV test is available only to women; no HPV test yet exists to detect the virus in men."

I believe that's misleading. it must mean there is no routine test for 'healthy' men that is as easy as a Pap test.

Terry Stephens's picture
Terry Stephens
Posts: 6
Joined: Sep 2012

Pardon my typing skills but wanted to say I was a stage 4 oral cancer patient diagnosis when I was 45 I am now going on 52. I had all my treatment done at the UofM in Michigan. It started at the rear base of my tongue and spread to right lymph node. Underwent 3 months of radiation,after surgery, and did Chemo through a pick line and chemo pump for 7 days every 4 week of radiation. I went from 220lbs to 148lbs by the end of treatment. I cant even describe the anxiety and the waiting for treatment which took almost 3 months to get ready for before it actually began. I had a 4yr son who will soon be 10 that I was determined no matter what I was going to be around to love and raise. It took me almost 3 years to feel like myself again and a rare form of arthritis in my spine made the radiation treatments almost unbearable for me every day being locked in a mask on a cold hard table, but I made it!! I refused to give up even when there were times I when I wanted too. My great family and friends were my support that help pull me through. I had to learn not to google my chances everyday or read to much into the dark side of this cancer. Instead I accepted my treatment and trusted my doctors and so far they have given almost 6 great years at one time I didnt think I had. Please feel free to ask me any questions I just joined the sight thinking perhaps I could help like so many helped me through my battle.

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