May 12, 2021 Latest post:
Jun 17, 2021
As some of you many know, I was diagnosed with Cancer of the Tongue in March. I had been having occasional trouble swallowing some foods, and when I got my 1st COVID vaccination in late February, the lymph nodes on the right side of neck swelled up. When the swelling didn't go down, I went to the doctor and was referred to an Ear, Nose and Throat specialist. At that appointment, the doctor scoped my sinuses and throat and found a 2.5-3 cm mass at the base of my tongue. An initial biopsy of the lymph nodes confirmed that the lump was cancerous and had spread to my lymph nodes.
We met with multiple doctors, and imaging confirmed that the Cancer was isolated to the tongue and lymph nodes in the neck. After that he treatment plan was developed: Chemotherapy combined with focused Radiation treatments. The Chemo that is being used is specialized to help boost the radiation's effect on the tumors, but isn't the heavy-duty chemo that with result in a suppressed immune system.
Treatment started on April 21, with an all day session of Chemotherapy, followed by Radiation. There will be a total of three Chemo sessions, and radiation is every weekday for 7 weeks. So far, I'm feeling pretty good, but there will be a time where the radiations' effect may not allow me to eat or swallow without pain. To resolve this, I had a feeding tube implanted on April 14th, and that may be how I get to eat for a while.
All in all, the doctors are very optimistic of a positive outcome for this - they are seeing a dramatic increase in these types of cancers in the last 10-15 years, and as a result have a lot of experience treating them.