• loiswood's Avatar

    loiswood shared an experience

    Loss (Lost loved one): My husband was diagnosed with esophageal cancer in 2013. He went through chemotherapy and radiation at which point the cancer was gone. We met with a thoracic surgeon who told us he could choose to not have surgery or have it. If not he would face the possibility of it recurring. The surgery was 12 hours and he was hospitalized for 4 and a half months with complications. Chest drains, enormous pain a feeding tube. After leaving the hospital he gradually got better, returned to playing golf and his normal activities. In June of 2015 his vocal chord became paralyzed for never diagnosed reasons. He lost weight and so needed a feeding tube again and a tracheostomy. From then until April 22 of this year he got weaker and weaker, could not eat or drink and was in horrible chronic pain from the massive surgery. The cancer had returned and nothing could be done. He passed away on April 22nd. I write all this to say that anyone who is considering this surgery should seek a second opinion and think very carefully about having it. It took a huge amount of time away from us and my husband's quality of life was destroyed. The surgery is not a cure and the cancer will come back. I feel now that he suffered horribly for nothing and would not make the same choice again. Cancer treatment is, at best, a crap shoot based on guess work. It's a monster that will steal your life and take away everything from you.

    6 Comments
    • judyinflorida's Avatar
      judyinflorida

      So sorry for your loss and for your terrible experience. I am presently a hospice patient, having decided not to pursue any more treatment that would be palliative, at best. This gives me time to get my ducks in a row, without suffering needlessly. But, everyone has to choose their own path. There is no one size fits all. You made the best decision you could at the time. It sounds like he did have some good time after the surgery, even though it was short. I don't understand why he was in so much pain when there are alternatives that might shorten his life, but make it pain free. Hold your memories close and remember the good times you shared until you meet again.

      over 3 years ago
    • Nanchie's Avatar
      Nanchie

      I am a few months post surgery and this post has really scared me .My surgeon is hopeful my cancer is cured but you say it is not a cure and that it comes back. My hope for the future has diminished as you have experienced it with your husband and know what happens. I am hoping that not all cases are the same about surgery not being a cure and that I have some future to hope for . I am sorry for your loss .

      over 3 years ago
    • BoiseB's Avatar
      BoiseB

      Nanchie. A famous statesman once said "The only thing we need to fear is fear itself" I believe that was FDR. Now I feared cancer from the time I was 10 years old. That didn't prevent me from getting two cancers and two very aggressive cancers. I have beat EC twice and also a very aggressive uterine cancer. Fear should make us vigilant not panicky. Life is a krap shoot. You need to live as healthy as you know how and you need to spend time and energy learning about healthy living. (You also have to look both ways when crossing the street :) Billy, a WhatNexter, is I believe a 15 year survivor of EC and I believe he just celebrated his 79th birthday. One thing is for certain if we give up then our worst fears will be realized.

      over 3 years ago
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    loiswood asked a questionEsophagus (Esophageal) Cancer

    Post Operative Keloid Scarring

    • TXHills' Avatar
      TXHills

      I had some unexpected scarring where my port was, after it was taken out. Have the docs suggested any gentle stretches he might do, to help break up the scar tissue? I did stretches a few times a day for months, and still do, even years later, when my surgical area feels tight. They reallly helped my discomfort and in keeping my range of montion. The nervew can take a few months to heal, also. My surgeon suggested I get Vitamin E capsules, and pierce one with a pin, then rub that oil on my port scar. It did seem to make it less red and noticeable. I hope this gets better for him!

      almost 5 years ago
    • loiswood's Avatar
      loiswood

      TXHills...thanks for your response. We will try that. We appreciate your help. Take care and be well.

      almost 5 years ago
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    loiswood asked a questionEsophagus (Esophageal) Cancer

    Pain management

    9 answers
    • Jenvivace's Avatar
      Jenvivace

      Sorry he has still ongoing pain. I can only imagine compared to how long I had pain from my drain sites for only having them in five days... It must be that much worse for him having had them so long! I had a feeding tube for 5 months prior to surgery and then six weeks after. I am glad eating is going better for him. Hopefully the complications are behind you and things will continue to get better. It was about six months til I felt 80_85% back to myself, but I still have things I have to work around energy wise and eating. It is a slow recovery even without complications.

      about 5 years ago
    • BoiseB's Avatar
      BoiseB

      I too am on gabapentin (800 mg). It is for tremors and spams not caused by cancer but nerve and damage to my back due to whole different aliment. But I have no side effects from it. I was given gabapentin for the same symptoms your husband says are side effects dizziness and muscle pain.

      about 5 years ago
    • loiswood's Avatar
      loiswood

      Thank you all for your responses. I appreciate it and wish everyone well.

      about 5 years ago
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    Question: Pain management

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