Tonsil & Lymph gland Cancer post treatment

I’m now 4 weeks post radiology. The treatment is tough but so it seems is recovering from it.  I’m still so sore in my throat that I still can’t eat solid food. I’m on supplements and soup daily at the moment.  It’s made harder by not having any taste still and the saliva/ phlegm issue adds to those difficulties, everything just foams up.  Is this lengthy period normal?  Surely by now it should be easier? My whole mouth just burns constantly and dry as sandpaper despite water.  So so tired still, I have to work hard not to sleep during the day but there are some days it’s all I can do, which again a month down the line should be easing off by now.  Is anyone feeling this, and extra hints and tips.  Stay well everyone xxx Nix. Lossiemouth xxx

  • Hi it’s early days for you. Please listen to your body it’s a hard treatment and your body’s telling you it needs may be suffering from radiation fatigue i dud and gentle walk snd rest each day walk a little further. Bilig below might help plus read this  article
    tenember recovery is a marathon not a sprint ut takes time.  I’m 5 years post now 

    Hazel x

    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  

  •  Is this lengthy period normal?  

    I’m  afraid it is

    Radiotherapy has a disastrous effect on normal tissue and recovery is really slow. I wasn’t happy with being anywhere near well for six months and most folk would agree with me. 
    12 weeks is a significant turning point but it’s always two steps forward and one back. 
    I pondered for a long time why the doctors would tell you that you would feel better two weeks after treatment. What they should say is that you might START to feel better but that it would be a long slog but I suppose they have to give you hope. 
    My consultant was was perfectly honest with me and told me my cancer would take a year out of my life. He was spot on. 
    Be kind to yourself and take your time getting well. You will. 


    Base of tongue cancer. Out of radiotherapy January 2019

    Blog about my cancer. 

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

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  • Hi Nix, I’m 9 weeks post now. Things have improved a lot but still have a constant dry mouth and soreness on tongue and gum. I found that there was no improvement before four weeks so try not to worry and stick with it. Loads of good advice on here, usually Hazel and Dani leading the way.

  • Hey, how you healing? Are you consuming food supplements? I was given Ensure and told to have 3 a day whilst I’m struggling to eat real food.  However I’m reading that Ensure is not good long term. I still can’t eat proper food so quite reliant on the shakes, I’m 5 weeks post treatment. What / how are you coping Mark?  

  • Hi Nix

    In relation to the Ensures not being good for you long term. I have not heard this before. I can see that when you are able to return to eating properly that the Ensure would not be necessary and just add extra calories that are not needed. However there are many of us on this forum that rely on drink supplements such as Ensure long term to help us maintain our calories because of issues with being able to eat properly. I am on Fortisip 3 times a day along with what I am able to eat and will be long term. There are some who are only able to have drink supplements as they are unable to swallow at all. Be guided by your dietician and speech pathologist. You will know when you can stop drinking the Ensures as you will automatically stop taking them when you are able to return to normal eating. Don't add an extra worry about drink supplements prevent you from getting the calories you need.

    Recovery from radio/chemo can take some time so give yourself the best possible opportunity. Consuming enough calories is part of the process along with some very gentle exercise like a short walk daily.

    You'll get there you just can't rush things.

    Best wishes



  • Hi Nix. I have porridge every morning, soups most days for lunch, evening meals such as fish pie, or sausage and mash. Roast dinnner so long as there’s lots of gravy. Anything soft and saucy really. I’m avoided spicy for now. Ice creams are good.

    I was on Fortisips previously and more than one dietician said that many people are on them long term and that they give you all you need. I’m guessing the same would apply to Ensures.

    Best of luck with everything