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KARLY
@karly

Posts: 11
Joined: Aug 12, 2017

Trach after esophageal cancer

Posted by @karly, Mon, Oct 15 9:44pm

My husband was diagnosed with esophageal cancer August 2016. He had strong chemo and then surgery where his stomach was stretched to form a new esophagus. His throat kept closing up and stents were not helping. We then found out that there was more cancer and in the course of removing a stent his vocal cords were both paralyzed. So it has been over a year since he has had any thing to swallow. He is on tube feeding and he has a trach. Has there ever been a time when a trach has been removed? Has anyone experienced this before. There is talk that once he is cancer free they could possibly do another surgery to make it so that he could swallow but would lose his voice and still have to have a trach. Has anyone had any experience with this? Latest PET scan shows some small spots of cancer, in throat and near the spine? They just changed his chemo cocktail to something different so now he gets sicker.
I am not sure if we should maybe get a second opinion. Any suggestions?

REPLY

Hello @karly

I appreciate your post and I'm sorry to hear of your husband's struggle with cancer. You posted a question about getting a second opinion.

I have one paralyzed vocal cord, the cause is not known for sure, so I understand just a bit about how difficult this can be. I had a procedure several years ago at Cleveland Clinic where they put an implant in the cord to help it close up with the other working cord. Now I follow up with an otolaryngologist nearer my home.

Please know that it is always your right to get a second opinion. In your husband's case, it would probably be best to get that second opinion at a well known cancer research facility or at a multidisciplinary team research facility like Mayo or a university teaching hospital.

You will want to choose an oncologist who is experienced in treating your husband's type of cancer. Will you continue to post and let me know how he is doing?

Hi @karly, You'll notice that I moved your message to the Head & Neck Cancer group. You will likely get more responses here from members who have and have had a trach after head and neck cancer, like @alpaca @jeffk @adriennef @kimf @jano and @deborahe.

I agree with @hopeful33250 that you can always get a second opinion, providing your husband is willing. What type of chemo is he taking now and how long will he be on it?

I strongly recommend a second opinion, even though you might have to travel to get to a facility that is tops in this type of cancer. Local oncologists only have so much to offer. Odds are always improved at a research/referral facility. I ended up at Mayo Rochester….a 10 hour drive…..after local and University of Michigan ENT consults. Take charge of his medical care and do some research into options. Mayo is amazing.

I strongly recommend a second opinion and I would suggest you visit Dr. Eric Moore. I had a very rare form of cancer called Laryngeal Chondrosarcoma which paralyzed one of my vocal cords and blocked 90% of my esophagus. I had a trach in during numerous surgeries and was finally able to have it removed. My voice is different, I can swallow and breathe st 50%. Dr. Moore was a blessing along with his entire team at Mayo! Jeff

Hi
This is my first attempt at this so please bear with me.
This is extremely difficult to explain but basically I had an operation to remove a tumour from my oesophogus, this involved stretching my stomach up to create a new link between my throat & my stomach. Whilst the operation was initially successful after 5 day I became very ill. Following investigations it was apparent that the join had not taken & had started to die unfortunately causing most of my stomach to be burnt back & other complications to my lung due to necrotic fluid.
I had an immediate emergency operation to save me which involved tying off what was left of my stomach & inserting a jejunostomy peg feed for liquid food & drink. My remaining oesophogus was pulled out externally to a stoma to drain my nose & saliva. I ended up being in ICU for 11 days & spent 2 months in hospital. I only realised afterwards how ill I was although this was more obvious physically as I also lost 3st in weight. I released was told to get as fit as I could in readiness for another major operation, called Colonic interposition, basically involving a 14" piece of my large intestine transplanted to provide a new oesophogus.
Nine months later I was deemed fit enough to have the operation. It again went well however

@nowayback

Hi
This is my first attempt at this so please bear with me.
This is extremely difficult to explain but basically I had an operation to remove a tumour from my oesophogus, this involved stretching my stomach up to create a new link between my throat & my stomach. Whilst the operation was initially successful after 5 day I became very ill. Following investigations it was apparent that the join had not taken & had started to die unfortunately causing most of my stomach to be burnt back & other complications to my lung due to necrotic fluid.
I had an immediate emergency operation to save me which involved tying off what was left of my stomach & inserting a jejunostomy peg feed for liquid food & drink. My remaining oesophogus was pulled out externally to a stoma to drain my nose & saliva. I ended up being in ICU for 11 days & spent 2 months in hospital. I only realised afterwards how ill I was although this was more obvious physically as I also lost 3st in weight. I released was told to get as fit as I could in readiness for another major operation, called Colonic interposition, basically involving a 14" piece of my large intestine transplanted to provide a new oesophogus.
Nine months later I was deemed fit enough to have the operation. It again went well however

Jump to this post

Hi @nowayback, welcome to Connect. You'll notice that I moved your message to a discussion in the Head & Neck Cancer group (https://connect.mayoclinic.org/group/head-neck-cancer/). I did this so you could meet other members who have had esophageal cancer and may have experiences similar to yours. Simply click VIEW & REPLY in the email notification to read the past messages from @karly @jeffk @hopeful33250 and @sepdvm

NoWayBack, it appears your message was cut off. You were saying that you had a colonic interposition nine months ago and that at first things seemed to be going well. Has something happened? How are you doing?

Hi Colleen
Thank you for your email & your concern Iiugggg is appreciated.
Sorry yes you are correct in that my message got lost half way through for some inexplicable reason & I couldn't get back in to finish it, so I just thought I had lost it & gave up. I will have another go & see how it goes.
Thanks again

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