Melissa Paoloni Johns

First post: Mar 1, 2011 Latest post: Nov 6, 2022
I was diagnosed with stage 4 tongue cancer in February 2011.  I endured a surgery that was nearly 16 hours long on March 3rd. They removed 120 lymph nodes from my neck and the majority of  my tongue. My mouth was reconstructed using connective tissue from my left forearm. A tracheotomy was inserted to help me breathe.   I endured 2 months of radiation and chemotherapy.

After a long remission, I am fighting cancer once again. I was diagnosed in October 2019 with a second primary oral cancer. Just as in my prior diagnosis, I do not smoke, drink, and I am not HPV positive.

In April 2021, I went through another “glossectomy” surgery at MD Anderson in Texas. They removed my reconstructed mouth and rebuilt it using my thigh. Muscle and skin were also used to rebuild my neck.

I want my life and my fight to live to be a testimony to Gods faithfulness. I am grateful for every prayer for complete healing. Please pray for me on this journey. Please also pray for my family. Our youngest daughter was only 9 months old when I was diagnosed in 2019 and this journey can be so very hard.

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