dgarciaj's Journey:

Patient: Head & Neck/Throat Cancer > Salivary Gland Cancer > Adenoid Cystic Carcinoma

Patient Info: Currently in active treatment (initial surgery, receiving chemo rounds/radiation), Diagnosed: about 4 years ago, Male, Age: 68, Stage III

  1. 1
    • dgarciaj
    • Experience with Adenoid Cystic Carcin...
    almost 4 years ago
    dgarciaj's Avatar

    Health insurance issue

    Oh No

    This took me and my family by surprise. I have suffering for long more than two years with pain and blisters in my upper left gums. A feeling like burning and very sensitive to heat and cold drinks. I went to dentist in Connecticut but they just check the teeth and molars. I goat two root canal procedures on the way. One dentist in CT referred me to an ENT who check me but he said that may come and go with time and could be just acidity. He did not ask for CT scan which could very well showed the tumor on time to avoid surgery. I retired from Bristol Myers Squibb at USA and moved back to PR. BMS medical plan was not awarded to me because my new location. I had to buy a direct payment medical insurance for me alone, since my wife obtained Medicare because she is older than me. FirstMedical the plan cover part of the studies and with a very high copay, this is one CT Scan out of 3 and one MRI out of 3. All others I had to pay with my SS and retiree money. However God did, provide me to keep up my finances.

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  2. 2
    • dgarciaj
    • Experience with Adenoid Cystic Carcin...
    almost 4 years ago
    dgarciaj's Avatar

    Surgery

    Procedure or Surgery

    The tumor (adenoid cystic carcinoma) was located in my upper left maxillary. So the surgery took off all my upper left maxilla and a bone portion of left eye orbit. I have a temporary prosthesis which helps me to communicate since have of my palate is gone. The surgery was on February 19, 2013. I have lost 30 pounds, already, because difficulties with the eating process. Everyday is a challenge but my prayers and my church prayers have sustain my hope that I will be back on track again on God's time.

    Went as Expected: Agree
    Minimal Recovery: Disagree
    Minimal Side Effects: Strongly Disagree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Strongly Disagree
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  3. 3
    • dgarciaj
    • Experience with Adenoid Cystic Carcin...
    almost 4 years ago
    dgarciaj's Avatar

    Chemotherapy

    Drug or Chemo Therapy

    I am receiving carboplatin and Erbitux once a week. The Erbitux is killing me with the rash in the face, neck, chest and back. The crèmes prescribe by the doctor, hydrocortisone and clendamycine do not work a whole lot. I have my face all XXX up because in addition to the rash the radiotherapy (every day) is worsening the condition.

    Easy to Do: Strongly Disagree
    Minimal Side Effects: Strongly Disagree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Strongly Disagree
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  4. 4
    • dgarciaj
    • Experience with Adenoid Cystic Carcin...
    almost 4 years ago
    dgarciaj's Avatar

    External radiation

    Radiation

    I am in the 4th week of radiotherapy out of 6 weeks for a total of 30 sessions. The sessions are short in time, less than 10 minutes. This is mostly concentrate in the paranassal area (left chick, nose and right chick). After the 16th session is beginning to burn me big time. This is complicated with the once a week chemotherapy, since the Erbitux product used in, has produced a rash on my face, back and chest. My face is swollen, and red burn. My nose is bleeding inside. My leaps have aftas. The radiotherapy doctor prescribe Regenecare for the burns. It refreshes your face only. Only my faith in my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ has been sustaining me all along this difficult test. In specific I made mine the promise in Psalm 91.3 "Fore he will deliver you from the snare of the fowler and from the deadly pestilence." I am hopeful in the Lord mercies that I will be fine again to preach as I was used to, even with an obturator in my palate.

    Painless Experience: Disagree
    Minimal Side Effects: Strongly Disagree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Strongly Disagree
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