29 May 2020
Week 4 / round 4
Looking like Wozzer is slightly ahead on points after a month and here’s an update on how the fight is going…
I’m sure everyone will be pleased to hear that the er, bodily function saga is behind me, so to speak. No problems there. And I have a good supply of pencils – and lolly sticks, in case the need arises again.
The eating problems haven’t gone away though. The condition causing this has a name – Mucositis. For head and neck cancers that are undergoing treatment, either chemo or radiotherapy will damage healthy cells in the mucus membrane. This is the soft tissue that lines the inside of your mouth and oh boy, does it hurt. This is what the morphine is really helping with 😊
I’m solely on the nutrition liquids now – everything is fed to me via Ms Peggy the PEG and my weight is (unfortunately) holding steady. I say that because my team want me to keep my weight up and as they sign-off all the prescription drugs I need, it’s best I don’t upset them too much.
On top of this, my in-built saliva factory has started a new production line of extra-thick, gooey gunk. The closet I can think of is heavy-duty wallpaper paste and I can produce this by the bucketful (well, cupful), pretty much on demand.
Unfortunately, it’s when I don’t demand it and it comes up and then slithers down my chin, like some kind of old geezer - losing bodily function control, that I’m in danger of becoming.
And if that’s not enough, then the burning from radiation is now becoming apparent. My neck is turning a nice shade of reddy-brown and hair has been burned away from one smallish section of my head – at the back and above the neck (see photo).
I don’t mind that, it’s no worse than some ‘home haircuts’ I’ve seen during the lockdown! Seems 50/50 on whether it’ll grow back. I don’t mind that either – a small price to pay in the big scheme of things.
This does come with a bit of a burning smell – seems to linger on and around me all the time now. I don’t mind this either. But along with the gunk dribble, the weird haircut, croaky voice zonked out morphine look – I’ve no worries about social distancing. Seems everyone is giving me a wide berth these days!
I can’t quantify this, but having a poke around under my chin I don’t think Larry the Lump is anything like the size he was originally. So I do think confidently that while I’m getting a bit of a battering – the Lump is getting more.
Just have to keep focussed for the next few weeks 😊
Week 4 round-up:
Fluoride toothpaste 5000 PPM
Mouthwash – Caphosol
Pain: Paracetamol and Oramorph
Local anaesthetic: Gelclair oral rinse