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has anyones cancer spread to mesentery nodes?

Posts: 167
Joined: Sep 2011

Hello everyone.

I do not post a lot however I do read everyday. My mom has a histroy of tonsil/tongue cancer since 2010, she had total of 3 surgeries including 2 neck dissections, 1 on each side. On the last PET scan which was in January she was all clear on the head and neck part (last surgey on 3/1/2012) so it's now been more then 1 year and she seems to be NED, thank God. However on her last PET there was a node slighlty enlarged just to be over 1cm and it had an uptake of 6.5, it is located in the mesentery by the abdomen.  Her ENT did not mentioned anything about this so we left it alone thinking it's nothing major specially that we were so happy about her head and neck cancer being still gone. recenlty she went to her primary doctor and showed the PET scan results, she gave her a refferal to Hemotologis/Oncologist becasue the report stated that it may be beggining of lymphoma. So we went to this doctor, she did special blood test which came back normal however now on Monday we are going for 3 CT scans, Chect, abdomen and pelvis and of course neck. I am so puzzled thinking that this may be another cancer or... and here is my question: can head and neck cancer spread to lymp nodes in the mesentry? the hematologist said that this type of cancer does not spread there however how would she know? cancer can do whatever it wants to do right? anyway I would like to find out from people on herre that had enlarged nodes in other parts of the body other then neck and that actually turned our to be an innflamation, infection or some other desise. I am really upset with her ENT, I guess he only looked at his part of the test and ignored the rest of the body so now here we are 6 months later trying to figure out if this is cancer or not.

Thank you all for your answers in advance. I always think of you all and keep you in my prayers.

Posts: 765
Joined: Apr 2012

While I don't know the name of the cancer your mother had in the head and neck, I do know that cancer can spread to any part of the body.  My husband was diagnosed with laryngeal cancer (squamous (?) cell cancer).  It had not spread to any lymph nodes and after a year of NED we thought good.  Not true he was then found to have a second primary at the cervical of his esophagus, same squamous cell cancer.  Then after treatment and 4 months NED it spread to his right lung and reoccurred at the cervical of his esophagus.  

We were seeing a H&N specialist who was very good in his field.  My husband opted for no more treatment and all of our doctors agreed with him.  Apparently, thank goodness, his cancer in the lung and at the cervical of his esophagus is slow growing because after 6 months he is about the same.  Before he was diagnosed with laryngeal cancer, he was diagnosed about 7 years before that with a rare blood cancer and had been on chemo pills and still is.  He also had had squamous cell cancer cut off his ear and face but we were told by that doctor that it couldn't spread.  But who knows maybe it did get in his blood system and that was the cause of the cancer he now has.

Wishing you the best and we say it ain't cancer until they say so.  


longtermsurvivor's picture
Posts: 1845
Joined: Mar 2010

Spread of a throat cancer to mesenteric nodes would be very very rare.  Not impossible, but highly unusual.  A single mesenteric node can light up for may other reasons, including virus infection or other bowel problems.  It is true that these nodes can enlarge when someone has a blood product cancer, like leukemia, however generally speaking, mutiple nodes are involved.  unfortunately, there is no way to be certain of the situation without further workup, and, if that is negative, more follow up.  We all know how diffficult this is.  I would be concerned, but not paniced over this situation.  Time alone will answer the questions.  Wish I had better answers for you.




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