Updates on

Update posted by Phyllis Walden On Aug 28, 2016

1998 - diagnosed with stage 4 Hodgkin's Disease
- Began chemo in September

1999 - January scans showed 50% reduction of cancer
- May scans (upon completion of chemo) showed cancer had returned to initial levels
- Began stem cell/bone marrow transplant in July
- Cancer was in remission after completion of transplant

2004 - Scans and biopsy showed cancer had mutated to include Non-Hodgkin's cells
- Began Rituxan treatments of one per week for four weeks every six months
- Cancer was controlled

2010 - Rituxan treatments in January failed to control the cancer
- Began new round of chemo with different drug regiment in March
- Received second stem cell/bone marrow transplant in September

2012 - Blood Platelets (the things that cause blood to clot) dropped to less than 1000
(normal is around 250,000)
- Began to lose vision
- Vision returned while being treated with Rituxam to correct the low blood Platelets

2013 - Experienced a sore throat that would not go away did not look into it due to a family illness

2014 - Started to investigate sore throat in July
- Diagnosed with Stage 4 Throat Cancer in August
- Received chemo and radiation treatments September - December
- Had feeding tube inserted to assist in nutrition

2015 - Feeding tube removed in February; began experiencing breathing difficulties shortly thereafter
- Made several trips to the emergency room during the next few months
- Follow up scans showed spots in my lungs and swelling in my throat
- Ear, Nose and Throat doctor ordered a swallow test; failed badly
- Feeding tube reinstalled
- Tests showed that trachea was not functioning properly; started Oxygen Chamber Treatments
- Tracheotomy preformed instead after two trips to the emergency room.

2016 - Trach tube removed but still unable to breath normally
- Given choice: keep trach and feeding tube for life or completely remove larynx and be able to swallow food
- Laryngectomy performed May 31
- Began eating food in August

Upcoming - Surgery to reinstall the esophageal puncture tube which is necessary for the installation of a more permanent speech device that will make it easier for me to speak and for others to hear and understand me
- Reopen stoma (the hole through which I breath) to the proper size

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