Gray's Journey with Laryngeal and Hypopharyngeal Cancer

Spouse/Partner: Head & Neck/Throat Cancer > Laryngeal and Hypopharyngeal Cancer

Patient Info: Finished active treatment less than 5 years ago, Diagnosed: over 4 years ago, Male, Age: 55, Stage IV

  1. 1
    • Gray
    • Experience with Laryngeal and Hypopharyng...
    over 3 years ago
    Gray's Avatar


    Procedure or Surgery

    My husband is a larngectome (neck breather) for the rest of his life. Cancer of the larynx, had to have voice box removed, however he has had a voice prosthesis put in so now he can talk by putting his thumb to his neck. Has to have the voice prosthesis changed usually every 3 months because they go bad, which he will always have to deal with but hey he can talk yeah:). He had to have a trach for his first surgery and a feeding tube put in when the surgeon did his biopsy and diagnosed stage four cancer of the larynx (voice box). A couple weeks later was the second surgery where the surgeon was able to remove all of the cancer which was in his voice box now he is a larngectome. However great news that it was not found in his lymph nodes and had not spread. Thank you God! Then 30 rounds of radiation for a spot close to the surface of his neck, burned him pretty bad even had a burn spot all the way through to the back of his neck. He had to learn to swallow and eat again after his first surgery and then again after the second surgery and again after the radiation treatments. After the radiation it took quite a while for him to recover again, but slowly started to recover again. He had to prove to the oncologist that he could drink and eat and keep his weight up to get his feeding tube removed, what a great day that was. He has been able to keep his weight up since then. Still has trouble eating sometimes, but clears his throat and then the food goes right down, he can still enjoy all the food that he liked before the surgery, especially his chicken wings lol. After the second surgery and radiation has trouble hearing, stiff neck which he makes sure to move around so it doesn't stiffen up completely, kind of like sleeping wrong but cannot cater to it or it could really give him trouble also has bad arthritis in his shoulder and back. Still has not regained all of his strength back but hopefully over time that will get better. I'm not used to him laying around so much, he has always worked his whole life and been a man on the go, so he is having trouble with not being as active has he once was. Always provided worked and never passed on overtime usually 50 sometimes as much has 60 hours a week to provide for me and our daughter so I could work part time to be home for our daughter and run the household. It's like he doesn't know what to do with himself now but I pray he will get used to it in time. Been cancer free since April 19, 2012! Goes for his 6 month CAT scan May 7 praying all is great with that. Do these tests ever get any easier over time, I feel they will always be nerve wreaking, I know they cause me a lot of anxiety. We have a 13 year old daughter who has been through a lot and seen a lot for her age but am very proud of her and she is doing great. She is never embarrassed to be seen out with her dad...she told me when people look at her dad funny as sometimes people do, she is so proud of him because he is a cancer survivor and not afraid to let everyone know it to! I look forward to sharing our great news after the CAT scan!

    Went as Expected: Agree
    Minimal Recovery: Disagree
    Minimal Side Effects: Disagree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Disagree