Recurrence in node in neck

Evening all, 

My partner (36) was diagnosed with T3 N3 M0 in March 2018. He had chemo and radiotherapy followed by ivor lewis operation in July. 

After a tricky recovery with many hurdles a CT scan in Novemeber showed recurrence in one node in his neck. 

His oncologist is saying there is a possibility of neck dissection but this will be decided in MDT meeting this week but if they refuse it will be chemo only. 

Has anybody had a similar experience with neck dissection/recurrence in one node? 

Thank you in advance. 

  • Hi there. My dad had op for oc in January 2015. Recurrence in lymph node in neck November 2017. Chemo radiation began February 2018. Treatment has cured cancer again, but has left lots of damage. He’s now under pain management specialist. He’s a lot older than your partner (73) and has found the treatment much much harder this time. Your partner though has age on his side. Not sure if you want to hear all the nitty gritty, but treatment can cure it.

    good luck


  • Hi Sarah, 

    Thank you for your reply and I'm sorry to hear your father has suffered so much its such a cruel disease. 

    They are talking about neck dissection followed by radiotherapy but there is a chance they may say no (I am not sure why). 

    The more I can know about what we are facing the better - we've been through so much in the last year. He's still not fully recovered from the operation. 

    As for the nitty gritty I'm better knowing than not knowing I guess that I like to be as prepared as I can be. 

    Each day is getting harder but I'm pleased that there is still a glimmer of hope this is keeping me going. 


  • Hello again.

    well the nitty gritty is that the after effects of the radium have left him wondering if the treatment was worth it. He has had no quality of life since September. During the radium treatment he started suffering from

    pains in the neck and head. This we put down to the rough handling of getting the mask on and getting him in position on the table. Things have gradually become worse though. He now has excruciating pain radiating from his neck up into his head and from his neck down through the shoulder, down the arm to his fingertips. They think it’s nerve damage. He can’t even hold his head up. It’s as if his head is too heavy for his neck to hold. Because he has sensitivity to pain meds ( confusion, hallucinations, etc) he is only able to take paracetamol.

    He has spent 7-8 weeks in hospital from September. The pain meds they gave him, he reacted badly to. Hallucinations and delirium with pain and lack of sleep. He had a nasal feeding tube put in and twice he pulled it out through the night. The nurses couldn’t believe how he had done it as it was anchored to a pipe which loops around the top of his nose, down through the stomach into his intestine. It was all the drugs that made him do it. He was so confused.

    anyway, to cut a long story short he is now under a pain consultant. They are going to try steroid injections and local anaesthetic into the neck on Friday. Fingers crossed it offers some relief.

    i believe though, this is your worst case scenario. Your partner is younger and I’m sure a lot fitter than a 73 year old man ( who has aged 15 years in the last year). The radium is strong stuff. It does it’s job killing cancer cells, but unfortunately damages healthy cells in the area.

    good luck

    sarah xx