Welcome to Carroll's CaringBridge website. We are using it to keep family and friends updated in one place. We appreciate your support and words of hope and encouragement.
On January 18, 2017 Carroll went to the ENT because he had been having a persistent sore throat for months that wasn't getting any better. Upon doing a scope, the P.A. thought it was swollen due to GERD, but would show the video to the ENT specialist when he came the next day. He called the next morning and wanted Carroll to come down so he could scope him himself and confirmed that there was a tumor on the right side of Carroll's throat. A CT scan showed that it had moved to a couple lymph nodes in his neck, but the doctors said that 99% of the time, it will because they are so close. A PET scan revealed that the cancer was no where else in his body, which was a relief and that means they are treating it for a cure.
The tumor is too large, however to remove right away without taking his voice box as well so they will be starting chemo and radiation to try to shrink it before doing robotic surgery. Carroll did have some dental work that needed to be done that he had been putting off and the doctors said that if he waited until after the treatment, it would never heal. They decided to just take all of his teeth so that he wouldn't have to worry about them again and since the radiation would most likely wreck them afterwards anyway. On January 31, he went to meet the oral surgeon and they decided to pull all of his teeth that day. He was a champ and had 22 teeth removed with only Novocain! After treatment, they'll fit him for dentures and he'll never have to go to the dentist again! A bonus for him, even though he's probably not feeling that way at the moment.
Carroll will start Chemo February 7th and radiation the following week to give his mouth time to heal. He'll be doing chemo once a week to help the 7 weeks of daily radiation work better. Since he's diabetic and has neuropathy, they thought he might have the chemo pill, but they chose to do a lighter chemo drip that isn't quite as strong as the regular chemo drip. Chemo is also the secondary treatment in this case and the radiation is the main form to shrink the tumor right now. He'll be going to Mayo M-F for 7 weeks for treatment starting on February 13th. We appreciate all of your thoughts, prayers and well wishes as he undergoes this journey to recovery. We will try to keep you updated as much as possible.