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soreness in my neck...need some insight please

benjamin2121's picture
Posts: 24
Joined: Oct 2013

A cpl of questions that someone may be able to help me out on...first it is 5 weeks since my radiation and chemo treatment has been done for my larnyx cancer...and I have started to feel  a little mucsle ache or soreness on the side of my neck area that I had my treatment....and I am sure like most of us I am paranoid of each and everything that feels different...I was wondering if this is normal or if I should be concerned...I have 4 weeks till I get my pet scan to see if the treatment worked...I have or ...pray that I "had" stage 4 cancer ....but when the Doctor did the last outbrief scope which was only 3 weeks after treatment....the mass had shrunk down to almost normal and the doctor said it was as good as we could expect and it looked like we were on the way to getting it...but in the last cpl days I have had the achiness and a bad taste in my mouth....and the bad taste is similar to the same one I had before I had treatment....it kind of tastes like how rotten meat smells...(sorry if that is too graffic) and i have a little mucasitis which is a lot less then during treatment...but had a little pink in it for the first time a little while ago since before the treatment...also I am a little more hoarse the last cpl days....granted I have been talking a bit more...Just like all of us I really want to beat this....so looking for anyone with some insight to some of these new symptoms....could the tumor have returned that fast? Because everyday up until the pet scan is crazy....the waiting is hard


Thanks for any help in advance,


debbiejeanne's picture
Posts: 3095
Joined: Jan 2010

benjamin, i also had larynx cancer.  i didn't have the problems u r having but 1.5 yrs after tx, i had a constant cough like i did when first dx.  the cancer had returned.  i don't think your tumor would be back that quick but u never know for sure w/cancer.  i'd be like you and be parinoid too.  for peace of mind, call your doc.  its probably nothing but better safe than sorry.  plus it will ease ur mind.  be sure 2 let us know what doc says.  i will b praying 4 u.

God bless,


Skiffin16's picture
Posts: 8286
Joined: Sep 2009

Well, LOL...more than likely, that's what you are tasting..., only it's your throat that is the meat...

First, I'll say that nine weeks is pretty aggressive for the initial PET scan, hopefully you'll be clean and clear, but don't be surprised if you have some residual damage still going on and healing.

On the lighter side....

All of those things you mention as for fears, are actually pretty common in many folks not so far out from being blasted with radiation for several weeks. I know it's easy for me to say, being nearly five years post Tx from STGIII.

But of the many on this board that I've observed, I can probably count on 1-2 survivors that have had something going on this early post Tx...

If it bother's you or concerns you enough, go see your ENT before your exam... If he's like mine, he'd much rather you be pro-active and come in versus re-active... and as I would always tell him, it'll add a few bucks toward his next Mercedes payment...

But, it will at minimum give you a little sanity check to get you through until you get your PET results...

Hang in there, observe the things going on..., and if the concern you enough, have him do a scope.



phrannie51's picture
Posts: 4667
Joined: Mar 2012

and he thought the same as my first thought....that what you're coughing up and tasting, is skin sloughing off on the inside of your throat from the rads.  I've heard of a couple people on here actually coughing up chunks of necrotic flesh after treatment....you're just 5 weeks out, and there is a whole lot of healing going on....My fears were like yours...any little thing that was different, and I got nervous.....my ENT told me I was going to feel many new sensations along the road to recovery.  We've been through a battering....a war....it takes time. 

Once thing you might want to do while you're healing is stretch your neck muscles....lay your head on one shoulder, hold, lay it on the other shoulder, hold.....tip your head forward hold, then tip your head back and hold.  Then circle your shoulders with your head in both directions.  Rads can cause fibrosis in the neck muscles, and stretching those muscles keep them limber and moving.  This might very well end the soreness in your neck. 


CivilMatt's picture
Posts: 4271
Joined: May 2012


Yes, being paranoid is normal.  No taste is normal, no spit is normal, no energy is normal, talking about what is normal is normal.

I started saying “I was” stage IVa, I would like to take a positive (H&N tack) and say it is gone.  Like yours, it is gone.

Tastes like rotten meat smells, I will have to side with John and Phrannie on that one.

If you are worried, I would not hesitate contacting my ENT, they are still your team and they want you to win, like we do!

I am hoping you are just hitting a rough spot and this will pass.  Good luck.


Skiffin16's picture
Posts: 8286
Joined: Sep 2009

I'm Abi-Normal....


robswife87's picture
Posts: 208
Joined: Mar 2013

small bits and chuncks of burnt flesh. Rob did that for a couple of weeks. 

Robs neck muscles were sore and tight. Skin was fried and taught and he could hardly turn his head becuase it was tight. 

That is all gone now and is normal except for no saliva and very little taste.

He gets jealous of the cat when she bathes herself. He says she is wasting good spit. LOL


yensid683's picture
Posts: 318
Joined: Apr 2012

I too experienced soreness in my neck after rads.  About a week or so after the last treatment the right side of my neck was sore, much like a stiff neck or over used muscle.  It was about 6 weeks later when I finally found out why, I had developed a blood clot in my right jugular from the infusion port's catheter.

My wife had told my RO early on that she thought it was the port and he dismissed it, thinking it was simply a reaction to the rads.  She put her foot down at week 6 and that triggered the untra-sound that found the clot.

Research on the port-caused clot showed that it occurrs less than 4% of the time, but in terms of jugular vein clots, it is one of the major causes.

If you have a port, is the soreness on the same side?  If so, speak to your doctor and ask if the soreness could be from the port.

Hoping your feeling better and better every day, hang in there - it will improve

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