Merry Christmas To Everyone
I would like to thank everyone for all the cards, calls, gifts, and prayers. They have meant a lot to me and brought back many good memories. The last 16 months have been rough, and hopefully they are behind us now. I still cannot swallow, and have a feeding tube for now. I can't wait for that 1st meal in a long time.
A lot of people are asking what happened and what is going on now, so I will try to make this as short as possible. Last year on August 10th was the 1st surgery, 12 hours I think to remove a tumor in my mouth/throat. It was a major neck dissection to remove the tumor, soft palate, 40 lymph nodes, ½ tonsil and part of my tongue. After 6 weeks of radiation followed by chemo I was told another surgery was needed, as the tumor had come back. This time I talked to other doctors for a 2nd opinion and found Dr. Larian (a referral from my neighbor who also is a patient) who I felt very comfortable with to do the surgery.
So on July 3rd, 2006 , five days after Tracy was laid off from her job, the 2nd surgery was performed, by Dr. Larian and a facial plastic surgeon, Dr. Azizzadeh. Another 12 hours to remove the tumor, replace lower jaw on left side with a carbon fiber plate, major portion of my tongue, more of the palate and the rest of my tonsil. Basically everything in my mouth. A skin graft from my left forearm and upper thigh was used to replace the tongue and rear palate.
In early November 2006 my 1st checkup was ordered and there was something in my left lung and sinus. Surgery was needed again, this time to remove a tumor in my sinus and remove what was in my lung. So on November 29th, it was another 12 hours. The upper jaw and cheekbone was removed and sinus cleaned out. Another skin graft and muscle graft from the right upper thigh. The lung was just a sore, thank God, but my ribs hurt for weeks. A retainer was made for my upper jaw and will be replaced with a permanent one in approximately 6 months, so it is hard to understand what I am saying, and hard to eat and swallow. Now it is therapy time and hopefully everything is behind us now.
Merry Christmas and thanks again.