Home Again - TORS surgery complete

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momall25ofu
momall25ofu Member Posts: 81 Member

I'm so glad to be home, friends!  I thought I'd get on here while we were at the hospital ... but of course that was not of importance at the time.  He had the TORS surgery, took out part of his tongue, a muscle that controls tongue movement, and part of his paryngeal wall.  Then the regular surgery to take out the affected lymph nodes.  It HAD invaded his carotid artery's, but doctors said they were able to peel it off.  I haven't received the pathology yet.  Danny was bound and determined to go surgery first.  He felt get the monster out.  It took two days to get his pain under control since he couldn't swallow, but he's doing so much better now.  My sister is a nurse and gave him a pep talk and told me about the throat spray.  He wouldn't take the liquid hydrocodone because he said it was like drinking jalapeno juice.   My sister explained he had to have by mouth medication or the pain would never get under control.  No one had explained that.  She's the one that told me, "Crush the pills and put in applesauce."  THAT IS SO IMPORTANT.  Why the nurses didn't suggest that is beyond me.  Then the doctor told him, "Use it or lose it".   That's all Danny needed.  He pushed through the pain and he's swallowing pretty good now.  Once he started swallowing the pain meds, he got better quick.  Very little swallowing the first day after good meds, but every day has been better.  Yesterday he was able to eat cream of wheat and drink Premium Protein.  He thinks it tastes better than Boost and there's a lot of flavors.  We came home last night and I'm getting ready to COOK some good tasting stuff.  Beans are on the menu tonight.  I'll take the beans out and use the Vitamix, then add back to the broth.  My beans are killer good, so he'll get some good nutrition.  I'm so encouraged by everything I've studied and read on here.   It's such a blessing to have this thread from those who have already gone through it.  

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  • Dean54
    Dean54 Member Posts: 160 Member
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    Glad things are improving

    And, sounds like he had a very rough road. I was so lucky as I didn't have near the agony of a lot of you and wish you the best getting better each day.

  • momall25ofu
    momall25ofu Member Posts: 81 Member
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    Dean54 said:

    Glad things are improving

    And, sounds like he had a very rough road. I was so lucky as I didn't have near the agony of a lot of you and wish you the best getting better each day.

    Thank you Dean.  

    Thank you Dean.  

  • katlou
    katlou Member Posts: 82 Member
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    glad your husband is doing better

    First I want to say that I have been following your story and I am so glad that your husband is doing better and that he was able to get the TORS surgery and I am sorry to hear that he was in so much pain for the first couple of days.  I am someone who would go for the surgery as well.  I was wondering about what your sister said about him needing to take the pain meds by mouth for the pain to get under control.  Would taking the pain meds through an IV when in the hospital have helped with the pain?  It just seems like with this type of cancer that trying to take anything orally after having this type of surgery would be very difficult.  It is pretty scary to think that you would have to take the pain meds orally to get the pain under control if you can't.

    My tongue cancer wasn't as advanced as most on this discussion board but I did have surgery (a wide re-excision 6 months ago and I didn't need radiation or chemo, am in wait and observe mode right now) and I drank Boost for a while afterward due to difficulty with food.  As a suggestion I liked the dark chocolate Boost, the other flavors didn't taste good to me.  Your husband is in my prayers.

  • tommyodavey
    tommyodavey Member Posts: 727 Member
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    Pain Control

    Great news to hear it's so far so good.  There are pain patches to avoid swallowing.  Not quite as good as the traditional method but effective.  Maybe ask the doctor what they have.

  • wbcgaruss
    wbcgaruss Member Posts: 2,342 Member
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    Glad you are

    through surgery and are home and have pain under control.

    It sounds like you are seeing improvement quickly.

    Being home helpsI think also much more comfortable.

    Prayers for quick recovery.

  • momall25ofu
    momall25ofu Member Posts: 81 Member
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    IV Meds

    Thank you wbc and tommy for the kind words.    Katlou, what the issue was is that the IV pain meds act quickly but also go away quickly.   They last 20 to 30 minutes max, then you've got to wait another hour and half for more IV meds.  At least at our hospital, that's the way it worked; i don't know  if it's that way everywhere or not.  They had put him on IV Fentanyl  every two hours and ordered liquid hydrocodone, again, which he didn't want to take because it burned so bad the first time.  After the throat spray and crushing the pills, he was able to swallow the hydrocodone as well as adding oxycontin.  It was immediate relief.   I pray you don't have any recurrences.  

     

  • katlou
    katlou Member Posts: 82 Member
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    IV Meds

    Thank you wbc and tommy for the kind words.    Katlou, what the issue was is that the IV pain meds act quickly but also go away quickly.   They last 20 to 30 minutes max, then you've got to wait another hour and half for more IV meds.  At least at our hospital, that's the way it worked; i don't know  if it's that way everywhere or not.  They had put him on IV Fentanyl  every two hours and ordered liquid hydrocodone, again, which he didn't want to take because it burned so bad the first time.  After the throat spray and crushing the pills, he was able to swallow the hydrocodone as well as adding oxycontin.  It was immediate relief.   I pray you don't have any recurrences.  

     

    Thank you

    Thank you for the explanation.  It just sounds like a horrible couple of days for your husband until he could get the pain under control.  I am so glad that a solution was found for him.  I hope he is feeling better every day.  I know he still has to deal with further treatment and I am praying he gets through that well.

  • momall25ofu
    momall25ofu Member Posts: 81 Member
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    By the way, my husband says

    By the way, my husband says Premier Protein drinks are much better in flavor and texture than Boost and Ensure.  AND, the doctor ok'd them.  More proteins and less sugars.