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Wed, Sep 6 9:38am · Esophageal cancer reoccurring in Head & Neck Cancer

Hi Karly,

I think what you have to do is listen to the doctors. Questions will come once you gather the facts from them. The questions may not be immediate but eventually they will pop into your mind and hopefully your doctor(s) are available to you to answer them.

My husband’s story is a bit different. He had a 12 cm tumor in his esophagus, the cancer had spread to 4 lymph nodes as well. He was considered stage 4. His doctor did not opt for surgery in my husband’s case because the recovery period was long and his doctor wanted to start chemo to try to eliminate the cancer not only in his esophagus but his nodes as well. It was a tough go because the chemo was so strong but my husband did well and was declared in complete remission. What we didn’t know however was the cancer had formed a tumor in the brain (cerebellum) which affected his balance. Apparently chemo does not make it to the brain easily and PET scans don’t show brain tumors well. We found this out about this brain tumor more than a year after his diagnosis. He’s fine because he’s a strong man and actually went to work today commuting 1.5 hours to NYC, but he did have brain surgery 10 days ago and will be undergoing gamma knife surgery (a radiation treatment) Friday to eliminate any microscopic cancer cells the surgeon may not have seen. The tumor “popped out like a cork” according to his surgeon so no “digging” was required to remove it. Through his most recent PET scan they saw a thickening in his stomach, 2 spots in his liver and another suspicious looking node. Because the brain tumor was a “mets” of the esophageal cancer, these new PET scan discoveries are also considered malignant. It has been suggested that he undergo immunotherapy rather than the conventional chemo treatment. He has yet to make up his mind which route he wants to take. He will be talking further with his doctors (as will I).

It’s not an easy road this esophageal cancer. I wish you and your husband much luck. Stay strong; I know you will make the right decision for you both. May God bless us all.

Angela

Tue, Aug 22 7:11am · Esophageal cancer....transitioning to food in Head & Neck Cancer

Hi ssimons,
He was on oxalyplatin and 5fu along with a targeted therapy called herceptin. He has continued with maintenance chemo since early this year – it’s a low dose of chemo and herceptin minus oxalyplatin.

Oxalyplatin is a tough chemo. Some tolerate it well, others don’t – my husband was somewhere in the middle and finished only 6 rounds rather than the intended 8.

I wish you and your husband all the luck in the world.

Fri, Jul 14 7:16am · Esophageal cancer....transitioning to food in Head & Neck Cancer

His oncologist is at Greenwich Hospital and is affiliated with Smilow cancer center at Yale and Weill Cornell and Columbia Presbyterian in NYC.

Wed, Jul 12 11:51am · Esophageal cancer....transitioning to food in Head & Neck Cancer

At present we don’t live in the area or we would attend. We are in Connecticut and looking for a spot in or around Ponte Vedre to retire. I will continue to follow these discussions and possibly post — once we get to Florida, we will attend.

Wed, Jul 12 11:36am · Esophageal cancer....transitioning to food in Head & Neck Cancer

My husband was stage 4 with a 12cm tumor in his esophagus and signs of malignancy in 4 surrounding lyph nodes. He didn’t have surgery only chemo — the tumor is now gone and he was declared in complete remission. He is eating almost everything in sight and gaining weight but it took approx. 9 months after diagnosis to get to this point. Everyone is different. It’s a struggle in the beginning but in the end my husband said it was worth it. Soft foods, protein, many small meals over the course of the day — ice cream?? (my husband’s favorite). I send best wishes for a speedy recovery.