Cordotomy versus Tracheotomy

Posted by thomason @thomason, Jun 5 11:44pm

I am faced with a dilemma. My vocal cords are paralyzed bilaterally from radiation treatment that ended approximately one year ago. Because of this, I have difficulty breathing, although I can eat, talk and drink fluids fine. The ENT wants to put a Trach-tube in, and then do a cordotomy. A Cordotomy is where a laser removes a portion of one or both vocal cords, to make the opening larger for easier breathing. There are risks, such as loss of voice, and aspiration problems. However, I am willing to take those risks, if that means no Tracheotomy. At age 62, I do not think placing a trach-tube first is wise. It will create more scar-tissue, and more swelling. The doctor feels that because of the swelling I already have, the trach-tube is a safety measure. I have spoken with other people that were in the same position as I am in, and their doctor did not do a Tracheotomy first. They did the Cordotomy, and told patient that IF NEEDED during the surgery or after, if swelling became a problem, a temporary Trach-tube would be placed. This is the route I desire, yet doctor is unwilling. I will be getting a second opinion–or basically try to find a doctor willing to forgo the trach-tube first. Has anyone else had any experience with this? Thank-you. By the way, the one person that related about their surgery, is very satisfied.

oh sorry you have to the research and decide what is best for you…. but it seems to be the way these days…. and I just hope that things work out for you after what you have been through… if its not too difficult to get a second opinion without ticking off your surgeon, I would go for it…. best of luck to you. J.

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@thomason, I think you are asking good questions of your surgeon. It's important to understand why he is recommending a trach placement to perform the cordotomy. That would be good information to have when you go for a second opinion.

I'm also tagging @marydwyer51 on this discussion. She had a cordotomy a while back and may have useful experience to share with you. Thomson, when do you have your second opinion? Are you able to talk to the ENT and ask your questions?

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@lacy2

oh sorry you have to the research and decide what is best for you…. but it seems to be the way these days…. and I just hope that things work out for you after what you have been through… if its not too difficult to get a second opinion without ticking off your surgeon, I would go for it…. best of luck to you. J.

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@lacy– I feel compelled to reply to this response. NEVER have the mind set that it is too difficult to get a second opinion or of “ticking off” a surgeon for doing so. Surgeons are humans, just like you and I, they are not god either. It is YOUR body. Surgeons make $$$$$ off surgeries or get to practice and add another one to their resume with each one they perform and schedule. They have pressures of filling an OR with cases. If any surgeon ever seems “ticked off” for you wanting to seek 2, 3 or even 4 opinions, run the other direction.

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@colleenyoung

@thomason, I think you are asking good questions of your surgeon. It's important to understand why he is recommending a trach placement to perform the cordotomy. That would be good information to have when you go for a second opinion.

I'm also tagging @marydwyer51 on this discussion. She had a cordotomy a while back and may have useful experience to share with you. Thomson, when do you have your second opinion? Are you able to talk to the ENT and ask your questions?

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Dear @colleenyoung, I just went for a second opinion and will know more soon. Thanks for asking!

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@thomason

Dear @colleenyoung, I just went for a second opinion and will know more soon. Thanks for asking!

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I look forward to hearing what you learned from the second opinion.

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Alguien de ustedes ha tenido Cirugia dé Tiroides cómo enfrentar la enfermedad

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@popeye6931

Alguien de ustedes ha tenido Cirugia dé Tiroides cómo enfrentar la enfermedad

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,,,I had surgery to remove right side of my thyroid as it had a growth on it called a goitre,,, they had to check to make sure this lump/goitre was not cancerous, it wasn't. Two nights in hospital after the operation and stitches removed a week later so there is a scar. I still have the left side of my thyroid, and they do an ultrasound every year to keep an eye on it as there are some small Nodules in it. Right after surgery I had to start taking a medication named Synthroid for life and the doctor checks my body's thyroid level every year by a blood test to see if the medication is doing its job. Have you had thyroid surgery? J.

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@lacy2

,,,I had surgery to remove right side of my thyroid as it had a growth on it called a goitre,,, they had to check to make sure this lump/goitre was not cancerous, it wasn't. Two nights in hospital after the operation and stitches removed a week later so there is a scar. I still have the left side of my thyroid, and they do an ultrasound every year to keep an eye on it as there are some small Nodules in it. Right after surgery I had to start taking a medication named Synthroid for life and the doctor checks my body's thyroid level every year by a blood test to see if the medication is doing its job. Have you had thyroid surgery? J.

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No, I have not. Thank-you, and glad to hear you check out!

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