Radiotherapy side effects.

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Hi everybody,

Its nearly a month now since i finished radiotherapy for throat cancer there isnt a sign of improvement whatsoever with the side effects witch is quite dissapointing. The thick mucus that keeps building up in my mouth is driving me mad. Has anybody got a rough idea when this starts to improve? Many thanks .

  • As a general rule most people are beginning to feel a little better by six weeks and turn a real corner by  twelve.

    I was still on morphine at 12 but eating soft foods well. 
    The mucous hung around for a while but I just kept spitting it out. At its worst I used to steam over hot water. Other folk used a nebuliser. Drinking lots of water dilutes it and I found I could refresh my mouth with fizzy water or diet ginger ale. 
    The tongue ulcers took months to resolve but weren’t too painful by 12 weeks. 
    6 months and I was much more my old self but RT fatigue still hit me now and then. 
    We are all different though and heal at our own pace. Push yourself lightly by all means but don’t get discouraged by steps backwards 


    Base of tongue cancer. T2N0M0 6 weeks Radiotherapy finished January 2019

    I wrote a blog about my cancer. just click on the link below 

    Macmillan Support Line - 0808 808 00 00, 7 days a week between 8am-8pm

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  • Hi - I am coming up to 4 months post treatment.  The memory fades quickly, at least of the bad bits, but I think it was really around 8 - 12 weeks when I saw the big improvement.  I did post the other day about my progress, but in summary I am eating relatively normally now, but still supplementing with fortisips and aside from fatigue (which I manage badly due to pushing myself) and a dry mouth I feel relatively back to normal.

    For mucus, which was no too much of an issue for me aside from a couple of times for a week or so, I found a nebuliser helped enormously.

    Give it time and you will see the improvement.  

    See my profile for more details of my convoluted journey
    • Thanks for your advice  cheersThumbsup
  • Hi You’re on track I took the mantra it’s a marathon nit a sprint. Treatments brutal recovery can be long but you’ll get there in the end. Lots of us have 2 steps forwards and one step back. I was similar to Dani on  timescales, I was still using a nebuliser up to around week7 -8 then still pulled the mucus out, I was also prescribed carbusistine to help thin the mucus You need to be aim g for 2-3 litres of water every day and around 2500 calories by any means you can. 

    Remember food is fuel enjoyment  if eating will return it just takes time. 


    Hazel aka RadioactiveRaz 

    My blog is  HPV 16+ tonsil cancer Now 5 years  post treatment. 35 radiotherapy 2 chemo T2N2NM.Happily getting on with living always happy to help  

  • Hi , Mu hubby also has this and says it feels like he's drowning but he's a year on from surgery and it's slowly getting better and like Hazel has said drinking plenty of water helps. Wishing you all the best xx