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Sister with Stage IV base tongue cancer

Posted by @pjthompsonattnet in Cancer, Oct 31, 2011

She was diagnosed 2 mos ago and is undergoing 7 weeks of radiation with 3 chemo treatment. Can anyone tell me what to expect after the treatment is finished? How can they tell if it is gone?

Tags: Cancer, Head and Neck Cancer


Posted by @beau1150, Nov 3, 2011

I had base of tongue cancer almost eight years ago. Laser surgery at Mayo with Dr. Hinni. Wonderful doctor. Radiation followed. The radiation was brutal to say the least. I was fortunate in that Dr. Hinni was able to remove the entire tumor. Life has been pretty much normal since except for recent thyroid problems due to the radiation. Tell your sister to hang in there. There is light at the end of the tunnel.
Feel free to contact me if you like.

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Posted by @pjthompsonattnet, Dec 6, 2011

Thank you for your reply and sorry it has taken so long but there are just so many appts. Her problem is that they could not do any type of surgery prior to treatment due to the size and where it is. So radiation/chemo is all they can do right now and it is just horrible. She has 2 left and almost quit toda and Dr. Ko told her how urgent it is to finish. I guess I just needed some kind of hope that someone can survive stage iv.

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Posted by @beau1150, Dec 6, 2011

I can only tell your sister that there is life after radiation. The pain is almost too much I know. I does go away fairly quickly after the last treatment. As I recall a couple of weeks or so. I survived on Ensure and boiled eggs.The eggs seemed to slide down with tolerable pain. I actually made it through without the feeding tube. Unusual they tell me. The pain was something else. Tell her to keep her spirits up. Life will be good again and I know how hard it is right now to know that. I have never known pain like that. She will make it through. They are the best at Mayo. Please feel free to contact me with any questions.

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Posted by @scaredsister, Jan 25, 2012

I would like to know if you had to have speech therapy afterwards and how is your speech now? My brother has refused to allow them to cut his tongue but was told he could have radiation and they have had sucess without surgery although they dont suggest it. He has a beautiful voice and writes songs and plays guitar and is terrified of never being able to do what he loves so much..Is there anything that I can do to help ease his fears or make the pain more comfortable. I dont know the correct way to even ask advice i am just so scared for my baby brother and it has taken a toll on his emotional state...he has not yet started any treatments they start in 3 weeks and we just really dont know what to really expect. any advice would be so grateful, signed scared sister


Posted by @beau1150, Jan 25, 2012

I was fortunate in that the surgery did not affect my speech at all. Very far down at base of my tongue. I can only tell your brother to do with Mayo suggestions. While I can understand his love of music he is so young that life will bring many other joys that he cannot imagine now. I certainly would go with the best option for cure and deal with the speech issues later. As far as the pain I can only tell him he will live through it. I am sure they have given him some pain meds that help some. Please encourage him to listen to the doctors.


Posted by @poppop, Jan 10, 2012

These treatments will probably snd it in remission if it does not heal it. One of our boys that lives in Fl. has a partner in business with him who had same kind. It was crazy how he found it. H had problems with his throat and could hardly swallow. 3 DRs could not find it. They said sore throat bad tonsils etc. He knew better so ordered a smll flexible scope from Chicago tool and used it to find it. 2 1/2 years later he is doing good but he did lose some weight from treatments.

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