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Thread: Husband has Neck Cancer

  1. #21
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    IndyLou - thank you for your additional insight! He already said he can live with these effects since he still has mobility and everything that's not microscopic and we know about is gone. His Dr said it was surprisingly clean in there with no extra growths beyond the lymph node or salivary glad that was removed. We both know he's not out of the woods, but there is relief that the more invasive procedure is done now. And yes, we are prepared for it to be unknown primary, but one last chance to find it. I lost enough sleep when this process started that I'm just ready now to see him through the next step.

  2. #22
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    UPDATE: The primary was in his salivary gland. An extremely rare location and type of cancer. Radiation was recommended, but he declined based on the fact that his cancer was non aggressive, slow growing, and extremely unlikely to metasticize to distant organs. We are awaiting the results of his first post surgery PET scan. He is starting to get feeling back in his ear, but neck, chin, and cheek remain numb. He is still having taste issues, due to the combination of a nasty tongue laceration from the clamp used in surgery and there are some ancillary taste buds on the tongue base. He can't taste a lot sweet things and other flavors are muted. His ENT said nerve recovery is typically a 6-12 month window for most people.

    Hope everyone out there is doing well!

  3. #23
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    Sharing that his scan was clean!!! NED

  4. #24
    Moderator Senior User IndyLou's Avatar
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    Wonderful news, Lydia!

    How is your husband recovering from his previous surgery? Things getting slowly back to normal? Is he able to eat and speak well?
    Age 52 Male
    early Feb, 2013 - Noticed almond-sized lump in shaving area, right side of neck. No other "classic" cancer symptoms
    late Feb, 2013 - Visited PCP for check-up, PCP advised as lymphoma. Did blood work, orders for CT-scan, referred to ENT
    3/7/13 - CT-scan inconclusive, endoscopy negative
    3/9/13 - FNA of neck mass
    3/14/13 - Received dx of squamous-cell carcinoma, unknown primary
    3/25/13 - CT-PET scan reveals no other active tumors
    3/26/13 - work/up for IMRT
    4/1/13 - W1, D1 of weekly cetuximab
    4/8/13 - W1, D1 of IMRT
    5/20/13 - complete 8 week regimen of weekly cetuximab
    5/24/13 - Complete 35-day regimen of daily IMRT
    mid-July 2013 - CT-PET scan reveals no active tumors, but shows necrotic tissue at site of original tumor
    early Sept 2013 - partial neck dissection to remove necrotic tissue. Assay shows no cancer present.
    Spring 2014 - No signs of cancer
    Spring 2015 - NED
    Spring 2016 - NED
    Spring 2017 - NED
    Spring 2018 - NED

  5. #25
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    He is talking normally and no issues with eating or swallowing. It was tough right after, took 6-8 weeks before that got back to normal. The taste issue is pretty frustrating for him but he's grateful he can still taste savory foods well. He is down a salivary gland so dry mouth is ongoing as expected

    Congrats to you on several years of NED! How are you doing withe taste, saliva, and swallowing now that the IMRT is a few years behind you?

 

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