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Sdurnell's Recent CancerCompass Activity

  • Sdurnell has replied to a post on the message board

    Catlover, I hope the third time is a charm for you.  You have gone to great lengths to find some kind of irregularity and have been told three times that there is none.  If you still have trouble believing it, you might consider getting some kind of counseling to see why you remain so concerned about it. Best of luck to you. Susan

    7 hours ago view post
    • Sdurnell has replied to a post on the message board

      Carolin, Was your cancer considered head and neck SCC?  If so I had a similar radiation for a cancerous lymph node (no primary detected). My fatigue took about a year to clear.  The sore throat didn't last very long, but the "burns" to the neck took longer.  And it was two years before most foods tasted right again. Hang in there.  In my experience, 6+ years ago, the treatment is brutal, and th...

      October 12 at 7:40 PM view post
      • Sdurnell has replied to a post on the message board

        John, My GI, whom I love, says that 15 mm is good enough to function "almost" normally, and that's good enough for me.  I hope yours stays open!  But if it doesn't repeat dilations are really not that big a deal. All the best, Susan

        October 09 at 2:33 AM view post
        • Sdurnell has replied to a post on the message board

          John, My problem is a stricture, tight but not very deep, kind of as if there were a rubber band around my throat.  It's also quite high up--just south of ENT territory into the domain of GI. I'm sure the procedure itself is a short thing.  It's the prep and then the coming out from the sedation that takes longer.  My doctor uses a series of 3 balloons--12, 13.5, and 15 mm these days.  He's neve...

          October 07 at 4:12 AM view post
          • Sdurnell has replied to a post on the message board

            What Bugsy said, and what others said as well. It will be slow.  My taste was fine at the 3-year mark.  I also have decent, but not "normal," saliva after 6 years, still improving. Be patient with yourself.  Get a bit of exercise, if only a short walk, and try to go outside for a little each day. New normal is wonderful.  One day it may seem an effort to remember how terrible it all was.  ...

            October 07 at 4:04 AM view post
            • Sdurnell has replied to a post on the message board

              Interesting work.  See also the new staging criteria: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.3322/caac.21389/full I was unable to definitively stage my cancer according to what I understood of the criteria, but that's likely because it was found to be unrelated to HPV.  I have no other causal factors, though, so my ENT feels that the testing was faulty. Susan

              October 07 at 3:55 AM view post
              • Sdurnell has replied to a post on the message board

                Your anxiety is really unfounded, but the sooner you get the colonoscopty the better, no matter the outcome.  This reminds me of the "scanxiety" that many with my cancer, head and neck squamous cell carcinoma, and I bet many other kinds, have before a scan to check on the status of their tumors. But really, the results of this scope will be good news no matter what they are.  Either you have a clear scan, ...

                October 06 at 6:23 AM view post
                • Sdurnell has replied to a post on the message board

                  Clint, Thanks for the update on your brother, but I'm so sorry to hear that he's had this recurrence and not able to treat it. The immunotherapy drugs that have been approved for folks who have recurrences after platinum-based chemo, Opdivo and Keytruda, are truly miracle drugs for some people (like Jimmy Carter, whose brain mets completely melted away) but certainly do not work for everyone.  I'm glad the mar...

                  October 02 at 4:51 AM view post
                  • Sdurnell has replied to a post on the message board

                    John, Actually, it's cervical cancer that's caused by HPV--that's why initially only girls were encouraged to get the vaccine.  But now with the big increase in men (and women) getting HPV-related head and neck cancer it's recommended for boys too. Almost everyone who is sexually active has been exposed to one or more HPV viruses in his/her lifetime.  Some of us just don't kick it, and it can remain dorma...

                    October 02 at 4:39 AM view post
                    • Sdurnell has replied to a post on the message board

                      From your reports it sounds as if you have some kind of infection,  not cancer, and I sincerely hope that's what you find at your appointment. All the best, Susan

                      September 29 at 2:01 AM view post
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                      About Sdurnell

                      Patient
                      Head and Neck Cancer, Squamous Cell Cancer, Throat Cancer
                      Cancer Nutrition, Radiation

                      I have squamous cell cancer. A neck dissection showed one node positive (<3 cm.) and encapsulated. No primary has been found. I have no risk factors for this condition. Day after tomorrow I go in to have all my teeth pulled (my teeth are OK, but gums not so great). I will need five weeks of radiation, starting as soon as my mouth heals, and have been told not to lose any weight, even though I'm about 15 # overweight. Everyone is hoping I can avoid a feeding tube, but I'm not confident I can eat enough, especially without any teeth. I'd really like advice and support for this.

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