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Hello, I'm a carer for my partner, he has undergone a partial neckectomy and tonsillectomy for squamous cell cancer to lymph nodes and tonsil, has just completed his 5th session of 3 weekly chemo's and 20 sessions of IMRT, he has 10 to go, he has mucositis and very painful mouth and throat but the worst thing that is bothering him now ( other than having to peg feed his intake as he is unable to tolerate swallowing food) is that he says there is something hanging at the back of his throat which makes him gag and sometimes sick when coughing up that terrible thick mucous, can anyone help please?This is the first time I have written anything on this site but I do read it all the time, thank you to everyone who update these sites as it makes you feel so good knowing that other people have been through it and came out the other side, Kind regards Chris
Hello Chris. I am sorry that your partner is going through all this, the treatments certainly can cause some distressing side-effects. Afraid that I can only guess on what the bothersome problem may be and I would suggest that it is this horribly thick mucus that the radiation causes ...... I went through much the same at the end of my RT. However, I would mention this to the doctor when he goes for his radiotherapy treatment ...... they usually ask how the patient is coping every time or at the weekly reaction clinic.
It's a tough road but with help we get there, my best wishes to you both.
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I had very similar problems, and my consultant suggested trying a nebuliser can i suggest you try one, it certainly helped me.
so sorry to hear the two of you are going through this, we experienced a very similar situation. D had 6 weeks of RT every day and chemo once a week for tongue and neck cancer. He started with the "gunk" around about week 5 which escalated after the treatment finished. He described it as feeling as if he were drowning. He was tube fed NG and admitted twice due to vomiting and dehydration. The good news is that it does eventually pass although it doesnt feel like it will ever end, I can still remember the awful smell and felt guilty as I used to put vic inside my nose for the trips to and from hospital. We tried a few tips which good people on this site suggested, like gargling with flat coke, he found the caphasol helpful. His treatment finished about 10 weeks ago and he also had problems with ulcers but the hospital gave him gel which seemed to do the trick in about 5 days. Like you we focused on getting through the treatment on a daily basis and were very naeve about how radical it was and the effects it causes. I became the queen of platitudes......... the favourite being "its a means to an end"
I wish you both lots of good luck and a speedy passage through this awful recovery. It does pass really, D is preparing to go back to work tomorrow on a phased return, which frankly I wasnt sure would happen some days but it is!
Its my experience you will find great support here, and dont forget your Mac nurse I couldnt have managed without ours
Hello Joycee, Thank you very much for your response and we will mention it when we go back to the hopsital for more of his daliy RT's, the mucus is dreadful, I feel so sorry when I hear him trying to clear it, especially when his throat is already so painful with the burns,Its good to know people do get through this as it seems to go on forever but its so reassuring to read other comments.Thank you, glad you are a ot better now
Thank you so much Karen, even when the radiation treatment has finished, its never over, in fact it continues like you said, as if they don't go through enough, thank you for the tips and advice though, everything is worth trying to enable a better solution to each problem, talk about taking each day as it comes, can't wait for the day when he can eat again and that when he does, that he can taste it, hope your husband is well on the road to recovery now.
Hello Edie, Thank you for responding with some really helpful advice, it is so hard as a carer going through this with De especially as he was so fit and healthy all through his life and had a healthy lifestyle, we were getting married in October but we postponed it until March next year, just hope that he recovers sufficiently to enjoy the day, this year we have written off as being the worse year ever, but we still think positive and things can only get better, so pleased about your husband returning to work, its normal life again.Best wishes Chris
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