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Swallowing

RonJ552002
Posts: 12
Joined: Dec 2010

I finished my last radiology treatment April 12th (squanamous cell base of tongue, surgery removing cancerous lesion, both tonsils, and 4 lymph nodes,then 35 rad and 7 chemo). Since then I've gone thru 2 sessions (15 treatments each) of Vital Stem Therapy and still having trouble swallowing anything with any texture other than pudding. All nutrition goes in the feeding tube. Is there anything else that I can do or am I just being impatient?

nick770's picture
nick770
Posts: 195
Joined: May 2012

If you can try to grt anappointmrnt with a speech therapist they will have some excersises you can do to help with swallowing ther two that I do are the effortful swallow all you do is swallow as hardasyou can like trying to swallow a golf ball The second is called the masako maneuver place the tip of your tongue between your front teeth of gums. Hold gently and swallow,keeping your tongue inplace It may feel awkward but this will strengthen your muscles in your throat. I do theese 5 times in a row 5 times daily.

RonJ552002
Posts: 12
Joined: Dec 2010

nick770 Thank You for the reply. I'll add those to the daily routine.

hwt's picture
hwt
Posts: 1904
Joined: Jun 2012

Sorry to hear of the issues you are facing. I haven't had that problem but will say that exercises from the therapists have helped me with other issues. What I can offer is prayers, they are coming your way.

Grandmax4's picture
Grandmax4
Posts: 583
Joined: Dec 2011

without an epiglottis to protect my windpipe is a challenge every day, in addition to the exercises please try this , take tiny bite, hold breath, swallow,cough hard, swallow again...gradually take larger bites til you know your limit...I find mashed potatoes with lots of gravy, yogurt, applesauce, icecream, all plain soups, tomato, broth, sweet potato, etc easy to swallow...best wishes..I'm 10 months out from di vinci robotic surgery, so give yourself time

Tim6003's picture
Tim6003
Posts: 1490
Joined: Nov 2011

Looks like I missed your post ..sorry did not respond sooner :)

I too had stage III base of tongue ....I did not have the treatment you describe ...all I can relay to you is I started using the feeding tube (it was put in before my treatments began) at about 4 weeks into treatment and I did not eat anything via mouth for 3 months after that ...my tube came out first of June 2012 (my last rad was January 2012) ....and by then I was still, in my opinion, very limieted as to what I could eat ...and certainly had a time swallowing but I think mine was mostly due to pain and swelling ....

Now at 8 mo past my last rad..I can pretty much eat most foods, but very small bites and I have to chew it to puree before swallowing it seems ...and I still chase most food bites with milk ...

Not sure all that helps ... :)

Best,

Tim

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