12 months on

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I just wanted to post an update 12 months on from my husband's diagnosis. He had a lump in his neck for a couple of months before and was eventually diagnosed with tonsil cancer that had spread to neck lymph nodes but nowhere else thankfully. Almost exactly a year ago he had a tonsillectomy then embarked on a lengthy process of chemo and radiotherapy. Our lives were turned upside down. We were terrified and angry in equal measure at the sheer unfairness of it all, and I guess part of the grieving process for the life you had mapped out.

Hubby lost 3 stone in weight, struggled to eat, lost his sense of taste. The radiotherapy was gruelling and many times he wanted to stop.Thank goodness for the naso gastric tube that kept him alive for several months until he was able to start eating again. Fatigue was a huge problem, along with tinnitus and finding it difficult to concentrate. He tried to return to work 4 months after treatment finished, but it was too much too soon. 

A full 12 months on he is about to start work again, much stronger and fitter than his first attempt. Lasting effects are lymphoedema and tinnitus,but he is still here which 12 months ago we really didn't have faith that he would be.

It's a long hard road with ups and downs, but keep going is all I can say. Wishing anyone reading this well. There is hope.

  • Great to hear he's getting back to something like his old self; it's a horrible, lengthy process, but the more stories of recovery we read the better. Many thanks for taking the time to report back, wish you all the best.

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    Metastatic SCC diagnosed 8th October 2013. Modified radical neck dissection November, thirty-five radiotherapy fractions with 2xCisplatin chemo Jan/Feb 2014. Recurrence on larynx diagnosed July 2020 so salvage laryngectomy in September 2020.

    http://mike-o.blogspot.co.uk/

  • Hi Birdwoman

    T2N1M0 HPV16+ tonsil cancer...diagnosed Feb 2023 ....finished Chemoradio June 2023

    I fully understand where you are coming from and the very trying times you and your  hubby have been through...I spent 12 days in hospital due to rapid weight loss  (circa 3 stone)..PEG tube feeding kept me alive....there were days, quite a few days, when I honestly thought I'd had enough but the alternative was unthinkable.

    I still have some lasting issues due to CRT...most patients do....but things are improving every day....

    Take care and best of luck

    Peter

  • Thanks Peter. Yes, still improving a bit every day. Amazing how the body recovers. Patience required which is not always easy! Take care of yourself x

  • Hi Great update gives hope to others just starting out or in treatment/ recovery. Life does go on.

    Hazel xx

    Hazel aka RadioactiveRaz 

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

  • Thanks Hazel. Indeed it does. I read a lot of posts last year when we were in the worst place, just to see that it' is possible to come through this x

  • Hi 6 years  next month since my diagnosis and heard the word cancer happiky  living my life We are over  Spain today cycled 60 km had tapas for lunch life’s great. 
    Hazel xx

    Hazel aka RadioactiveRaz 

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

  • Thanks so much for posting... I am 6 months post treatment and I can't tell you how heartening it is to read updates like this :-)

  • Good luck Liesle. It does get better, it just takes a lot of time x 

  • Lovely to read this. My husband has gone into week 5 of radiotherapy and his second dose of chemotherapy today. I gain so much strength and hope from reading posts like this. Right now everything seems so bleak. So glad to read your update.