Patient Comments: Larynx Cancer - Describe Your Experience

Question:Please describe your experience with larynx cancer.

Comment from: kate, 65-74 Male (Caregiver) Published: July 06

My husband had been a heavy smoker for many years and developed a hoarse voice, had it for almost a year and thought it was just the smoking. He then noticed a very small lump on the side of his neck. Our GP sent him to an ENT specialist who performed a visual and saw a growth on the larynx. A biopsy was performed and he was diagnosed with stage IV cancer of the larynx and it had spread into cells in the neck. This was in September 2009. The oncologists in our small town decided against surgery (thereby saving his voice box) and opted for chemo and radiation. He had chemo , followed by 7 weeks of daily radiation. A feeding tube was put in his stomach and I fed him through a tube for a year. When he could eat He totally lost all taste, he said everything tasted like cardboard. Now just over 2 years after treatment ended, his voice is normal and some of his taste has returned. Strangely he now doesn't like some foods he used to love and loves some he hated before. Today he went to the hospital for his follow up (scans, X-rays and blood tests) if everything is Ok he does not have to see the cancer doctor for a year.

Comment from: linda, 45-54 Male (Caregiver) Published: January 10

My husband had larynx cancer and had his voice box removed in July of 2008. In August of 2009, the cancer spread from his spine to his ribs and to his liver. He passed away six weeks later. The doctor was treating him for muscle spasms and never checked him for cancer because he was supposed to be clear of it when they eventually found it again in 2009. They said there was no cure; he was only 50 years old.

Comment from: 55-64 Male (Patient) Published: May 11

I was diagnosed with cancer of the larynx in September. I had surgery to remove the tumor and to remove a small piece under my tongue in October. I started radiation in November thru January. The doctors told me up to July that the cancer was gone. Suddenly, in July the doctor said that the cancer was back. I then had a biopsy and a PET scan to be certain. The cancer was back, I had endoscopic surgery to remove the cancer in November. Well, in February the doctor said that the cancer was back and that they wanted to remove the entire voice box. Well, I don't know what to do because the doctors keep saying that this will take care of the cancer and that will take care of the cancer. I just keep praying that God will tell me what to do next. In the meantime, I am trying to eat foods that slow the growth of cancer, i.e. cabbage, spinach, berries, carrots, sweet potatoes, etc.

Comment from: Zahoor, 55-64 Male (Patient) Published: March 05

I have been diagnosed with neoplasm pyriform sinus from a CT Scan. Two biopsies did not confirm it. But from my FODL and history the doctors are convinced it is a malignancy. I am waiting for the tumor to grow and show positive on biopsy as only then the treatment plan will work. But by the time it grows enough to be reported pathologically, I am afraid it will go in a higher stage and the prognosis will decline. What is the answer to that/ can anybody tell? I am a doctor by profession by the way.

Comment from: rafefour, 65-74 Male (Caregiver) Published: October 05

I have just learned of my dear friend's death 12 years after he died from stage four laryngeal cancer. I do not know all the details of his struggle but the shock of learning of his death so long after the fact has left me with so much guilt of having assumed he would always be there. He was an Art Director in New York and settled upon early retirement in Martinez, California. His influence on me as a young man was profound and has inspired me for all this time. Your journey with this disease and your struggle to survive has taught me a great deal about the value of every life and the bravery of each individual. I appreciate your lives and your stories of strength and humanity.

Comment from: 55-64 Male (Caregiver) Published: June 17

My husband is a Vietnam Veteran who has been fighting throat cancer for three years, He has had his voice box removed, most of his tongue, lymph nodes in his neck, and upper and lower jaws. He was exposed to Agent Orange and being on aircraft carriers, believes he was exposed to asbestos.

Comment from: IRISHGIRL, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: February 22

Hi I was diagnosed 8 months ago I always had sore throats went to the doctor every month. Finally he said to go to ENT Dr. It immediately he said it was larynx cancer he would have to do a biopsy. The results were cancer so I went through radiation for 3 months my head with a mask on it locked to a table also I was receiving chemo I could only do 3 of those I could not handle the chemo it made me too sick. A miracle I was feeling great for three weeks it was totally shrunk now I was losing weight my throat too sore to eat all I did was sleep. After more antibiotics and steroids for 3 more months I had to go to a specialist. Everything went fast tests and cat scans and tests 3 more months surgery full larynx and lymph nodes 2 months later I am walking in to get my prosthesis put in I am amazed to eat again I no longer smoke. I will let you know how it goes. I lost 68 lbs in 9 months I am 5ft 11 I went down to 115 lbs I am told all the cancer is gone. Not talking for 2 months is the most humbling experience. I wish anyone who has to go through this all the best keep positive there will be highs and lows just remember this is one of the few cancers that you can beat.

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