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Radiotherapy for Throat Cancer

15 Oct 2018 17:21

Hello all,

I have posted my little story on introduce yourself and basically I have been diagnosed with Stage 1 Throat cancer.

The prognosis is hopeful and I remain cheerful and positive. Its taken a while for the actual treatment to start so glad to get on with it at last.

I started my first day of radiotherpy today and have 29 more treatments to go over 6 week period.
I have made a little computer programme that logs my side effects and summarises episodes of each heading and I plan on keeping a daily log of how things went/ how I feel ( good and bad ) and map out my journey. I find it therapuetic.

I will share periodically in the hope that even if it helps one person as well as myself  it will be worthwhile.

So day 1 was fine and I dont really feel any difference or notice anything.
One small point is that the mask made was slightly harder than when it was first made as it has set little harder over the weeks and was a little more moveable on the day made.
Took about 10 mins for actual radiotherpay treatment itself.
Drove home fine.

Meet with advanced practioner nurse every Thurs to discuss progress.
Aware might be a little different along the way but all good after day 1.


kind regards



Radiotherapy for Throat Cancer

15 Oct 2018 18:08 in response to Anchor1707

Hi Ian 

just dropped by to say good luck with your treatment. The blog is a great idea to get things off your chest and to help others coming behind you. My hubby had chemoradiation- 5 cycles of chemo and 30 fractions of VMAT radiotherapy Feb to March 2016 and has been in remission since July 2016. 

Hope things go smoothly for you.

all the best 


Radiotherapy for Throat Cancer

15 Oct 2018 20:55 in response to Newlymarried

Hi Emma,

Thank you for your kind words and good wishes and great news re hubby in remission.

kind regards


Radiotherapy for Throat Cancer

15 Oct 2018 21:01 in response to Anchor1707

Hi Ian

Just to say if you have any questions about what to expect - tips etc on how to get through the 6 weeks then ask away - Id be happy to help. My hubby had primary tonsil cancer with right sided  lymph node mets In his neck.

best wishes



Radiotherapy for Throat Cancer

15 Oct 2018 23:10 in response to Anchor1707

Hi Ian

i am 7 weeks post radiotherapy hang

In there it’s a tough road I did 35 radiotherapy sessions 2 chemotherapy.

i have also done a blog takes u from diagnosis to present day.newlymarried on here is good if u have any questions just shout out. Mine was HPV 16 + cancer of right  tonsil and lymph nodes 

hazel aka RadioactiveRaz 

good luck 

Radiotherapy for Throat Cancer

19 Oct 2018 16:37 in response to Anchor1707

Hi there,

Many thanks Emma & Hazel for positive comments.

Well my first week is over and touch wood - so far so good.

In a routine now and all my appoitments are 9.00am which I prefer.

I am literally around 8 mins from house to hospital and have a free daily car park ticket and park right outside dept.
Have been taken on time and Wed appt was taken at 8.58 and back in car 9.15!

Very slick operation and staff are brilliant.
Made a large batch of home made tablet for the staff Thursday which they appreciated and seen advanced nurse practioner who advised of potential side effects to come.
I'm sure they will but will deal with them as treatment goes on.


So week 1 has been absolutely fine with no real side effects and apart from little more tired, I just have a power napo and fine again.
Will update end week 2 and hope more of the same.

Best wishes to all

kind regards

Radiotherapy for Throat Cancer

26 Oct 2018 16:08 in response to Anchor1707

Hi there,

Well week 2 is now over and again so far so good.

Little more tired and would say started to notice more mucas but that apart I have not really felt any discomfort or noticable side effects.

Aware goinf into week 3 next and potentially when more sied effects will kick in but will have to deal with as and when they arise.
Will post another weekly update next week , good and bad and hope helps someone in similar circumstances.
Happy to answer any questions based on my own personal journey.

Staff in radiotherpay are wonderful and consider it a blessing we have the wonderful NHS.
Not always right but by and large wonderful system and people and when you consider the cost of treatments we do not have to worry about the cost or health insurance etc over and above the diagnosis.

Kind regards to all

Radiotherapy for Throat Cancer

26 Oct 2018 16:28 in response to Anchor1707

Hi...My hubby was also diagnosed with throat cancer in January this year he had stage was a very brutal time with 15 weeks of chemo and 6 weeks of week 4 he started having the neck burns which looked like a nappy rash (he did use the cream for his neck well before radiotherapy started and throughout treatment) the burns continued 2 weeks after treatment finished too which he found were very painful..on the 12th September he got the all clear and went back to work 2 weeks’s so nice to get back to normality after a very long painful year . I’m also here if you have any questions.

best wishes and good luck


Radiotherapy for Throat Cancer

2 Nov 2018 10:25 in response to TinaDL

Hi there,

Well end of week 3 now and the initial 2 week honeymoon period with treatment is over as side effects really started to kick in this week from around Wed onwards.
Tongue feels quite swollen and buring at back of mouth and gums sore where teeth removed.
Sore to swallow or even yawn. Can't open mouth fully now/
No redness or skin irritation as yet.

Taste buds have got to pot and its a weird sensation as you eat with your eyes as well.Most foods kinda disgusting and few things I can take that still has a bit of taste and easy to go down.

I take cornflakes when soggy and eating plenty ambrosia rice/home made rice with cream.
Funnily enough Drumsticks squashies swwets are nice and soft and easy to go down as well as still tasting ok. Having to eat as a function now and not really because I look forward to as it tastes weird and little hard to swallow sometimes.
I am drinking 2-3 lires water or ribena each day which I am told helps with the mucas etc.

Also now on oral morphine from yesterday and its particularily sore during night.
Take 2 soluable paracetamol 4 times a day and also have Difflam oral rinse which I find helps as well.

Still trying to stay positive and was told it is a tough treatment but I am getting all the support and help from the wonderful staff.
Just take each day as it comes and can still work from home, so far, during day for a few hours and nap in afternoon.

Although tough, has to be done and I guess no pain no gain applies here and working towards the light at the end of the tunnel.

I did say I would log good and bad but with the appropriate treatment/medication and support, edge on in my journey.
I wish you all well and will post end next week in the hope that it helps at least one person on a similar journey.

Kind regards




Radiotherapy for Throat Cancer

2 Nov 2018 20:21 in response to Anchor1707

Hi Ian good luck sorry not replied earlier didn’t see comments ,goodness’s luck and please keep in touch any questi9ns just shout and either me or Emma will help. It’s a long and winding road we are all different

Hazel Blog

Radiotherapy for Throat Cancer

2 Nov 2018 20:25 in response to Anchor1707

Hi Ian hang in in there I luckily never lost taste buds but works both ways as lots of things I just can’t eat now 9 weeks into recovery and 16 lab lighter just had a piece if hubby 60th birthday cake first in months. 

I am on iramorph still plus 4 times a day co codomol and ibuprofen the pain isn’t pleasant when it comes and nap twice a day do u have a humidifier for bedroom worth it’s weight jn gold be careful with rubena as last thung u want us your remaining teeth to rot my oncologist recxominsds plain irvsoda water but keep brushing teeth n should be fine xx

Radiotherapy for Throat Cancer

2 Nov 2018 21:09 in response to RadioactiveRaz

Hi Hazel

thank you for your response and advice. I was wondering about the ribena myself and will proably stick with water from now on.

For years I have slept with a fan at bedside table and like to have cool in my face and also have fan on during day in my den at home or office. Might be making throat a little drier? but I dont want to give up unless absolutely necessary.
Have already been on co codomol for few years and probably why was given morphine so early in treatment as tolerance level probably taken into account.
I find drinking and difflam mouthwash helps the dryness and was told to keep up with.

I find the pain worse middle of night past 2/3 nights when I waken for loo and prob because meds worn off. Been told today I can up meds a little if needed and will have review on how I get on over the weekend with nurse on Monday. All ,my appointments are 9.00am and first one in so I'm grateful for that as well.

That said, Im still positive and working at home just now, utube,ipad,reading and happy enough with my gadgets.
Just something have to go through but remain focussed on longer term benefits.

I'll post again next week after I see another week into journey. Not sure how much longer I'll be able to work from home but will play it by ear.

Again thank you for your messages.

Have a great weekend

Kind regards

Radiotherapy for Throat Cancer

2 Nov 2018 22:21 in response to Anchor1707

Hi Ian

yes the fan could be drying you out ,I got a humidfrom Amazon abiutb£25:money well spent as a possibility later in us sry mouth setting in and then that wakes u still does for me so it’s up and rinse with warm water ps I can onky use mineral water tap water is now like chalk oh themjoy of tonsi cancer ! In the warm as u can stand ut water use table salt but unhabe to be gentle with it don’t gulomhenrky sip rinse spit nit pleasant but necessary.

i was told at one point if pain was too bad upmthe ora 10 mil every 2 hours !!!! Luckily I onky needed that for a day or so now 7.4 mil every 6 hours. We are in Spain at the min we rent an apartment oncologist gave me permission to come for 3 weeks it’s not been easy as food wise I am in energy shakes ,limited food by mouth .but everyone’s is different I had 3 Ed degrees radiation burn in neck de said it was inevitable for me along with I still have a radiation burn one side if tongue again the margins thatbse has ro be done in my case to eradicateall the the cancer. I always has 9 am appointment but took us 90 mins to get there due to traffic so lucky u being near.

keep in touch shout if need anythjng


Radiotherapy for Throat Cancer

7 Nov 2018 16:52 in response to RadioactiveRaz

Hi Hazel,

Just quick thanks as I seen your advice to someone else re toothbrush and I got a pack of 3 CURAPROX ultra soft bristle for teeth. Was so sensitive when brushing and using these plus sensodine toothpaste makes it a little more easier and comforting to use.
Also bought 2 humdifiers from Amazon and one for my den and another larger one for bedroom.

Makes a cool mist and also put in essential oils as well  - i have eucalptus/tea tree for den and lavender for bedroom during night

anything to help is great and little tips can sometimes go a long way to help discomfort so many thanks


Radiotherapy for Throat Cancer

7 Nov 2018 20:21 in response to Anchor1707

Hi Ian you are welcome I find the toothbrushes and humidifier are bith gif  sends they make such a difference,

i also find a magnifying mirror attached to bathroom mirror invaluable as well along with the finest interdental brushes as time goesonnyiur tongue won’t be able to clear   if food out if your mouth but gently use those and at least we can hopemtomkeep,our teeth !.

Keep lots  if tissues around and u may find drinking difficult for a while I was green tea water plain is still such a big no no it’s oike chalk. I am a expert in soda water m tesco oiver schweeps as their  bubbles are too harsh .! Sad I know . It’s a hard journey bt every little helps if u need anything just shout . Am 10 weeks post radiotherapy and still in my ibuprofen co codomol n started to reduce the ira morph 

where un U.K. are you ? I was treated in Leeds 

if u want to send a friend request you can private chat