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frankbc (@frankbc)

HPV P16 positive cancer

Head & Neck Cancer | Last Active: Mar 26, 2023 | Replies (107)

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@chamst

I just got diagnosed with this type of cancer. Am yet to start treatment but am told it will be Cisplastin (Chemo) and targeted radiation for 7 weeks. My mum had a very similar cancer treated the same way a couple of years ago. She has had significant damage done by the radiation and now cannot keep her weight up, even two years later. I would like to suggest a lower dose of radiation since this P16+ responds so well to radiation anyway. I'm hoping the radiology oncologist will agree...

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Replies to "I just got diagnosed with this type of cancer. Am yet to start treatment but am..."

Hi @chamst and welcome to Mayo Clinic Connect. I can imagine that you are nervous about radiation and treatment after seeing what you mum went through and what she continues to struggle with even now. Was your mum's cancer also HPV-positive? Was your HPV-positive cancer found in the cervix area or oropharynx (oral cavity) area?

Sorry, I can’t be of help. My husbands cancer was stage 4 and they didn’t consider radiation an option.

I was diagnosed with HPV16 tongue cancer in November 2021. I've just started treatments and feel better already. I'm told that it does get worse before it's better but that will remain to be seen. I've had 2 chemo treatments and 5 radiation treatments. I dislike the radiation treatments enormously because of my claustrophobia. The mask was made and it bolts my head and shoulders down on the rad. table. Then of course you get prompts about swallowing or not swallowing. Of course my body reacts in the opposite so swallow when I'm not supposed to. I've sort of tamed the fear of being bolted down but not completely. I usually have 2 days out of the week that I feel bad from the chemo treatment. It's a little frightening reading here about others experiences with radiation and the lingering effects. Are there ever any good outcomes?