Spread to lymph node in neck

Hello everyone,

I haven't posted for a while but just found out following a biopsy of a lymph node in my neck area the cancer is there too. I finished chemo carbo/taxol last April for OC 3c..intensive high dose radiotherapy has been advised everyday for 12 days. Then re scan in march.

I'm feeling rather shocked and less secure in myself about my strength and resilience. I know now what people mean about how pessimistic oncologists can be and I'm trying to separate myself from their anxieties, but its hard.

Has anyone had a spread to the lymph node in your collarbone area?

And I would really welcome advice on how to prepare for radiotherapy?

Many thanks,

Mitch

18 Replies

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  • Hi Mitch, sorry you have this spread. I don't have personal experience of radiotherapy but my mother in law did and some friends I have made at Pilates class and Art therapy have had it. They all seemed to cope very well with it. My mother in law said she got very tired after her treatment was completed, a feeling of exhaustion would come over her, she would lie down for an hour and then was fine again. She didn't report any side effects. Good luck and hope all goes well. Ann xo

  • Many thanks for you reply Ann! All the best for you. Mxo

  • Hello Mitch, did you have lumps come up which you could feel or did it hurt? I keep having neck funny aches at the moment and am getting worried about it. When were you diagnosed? Lovis xxx

  • No it was discovered after a CT scan, I didn't feel anything! I was diagnosed in November 2013. If you are worried its always good to get it checked out. All the best. Mxo

  • Hi Mitch, mine spread to liver lung and pelvic mass after 6 years! Now know cannot cure but try to manage. Had 6 months chemo March to August with mixed results stopped and have since had 2 lots of radiotherapy single high dose to shrink mass. As mass is in pelvic area have a lot of pain in buttocks but dont know side effects of neck radiotherapy. We have to go for it dont we? Good luck snd krep on hoping. Love Carole xx

  • Hi Carole,

    Thank you for your reply, I'm so sorry to hear it has returned, and you are right we have to do all we can to accept and not let it get the better of us! All the best. Mxo

  • Hi Mitch, I'm so sorry to hear that. I know that the lymph node in your groin turned out to be ok so this must be terrible news for you. I am now waiting for the results of my biopsy but fearing the worst as my CA125 has shot up to 125. I had Radiotherapy when I had breast cancer and had no problems at all, I hope you will find it the same.

    Love & hugs

    Sue xx

  • Dear Sue, thank you, yes it was a shock. My CA125 was only 23, hard to know really, its just important to listen to our bodies and raise any concerns. I do hope your results are what you want. Please let me know. All the best. Mxo

  • Hi Mitch- I had radiotherapy to my neck for thyroid cancer, so not the same thing but I think the side effects would be similar- radiotherapy Monday to Friday for 6 weeks but each session only lasted about 10 mins. Weird part is having a mask made so they can direct the beam exactly. Side effects started exactly on day 5 as they told me they would- painful to swallow so yoghurts and ice cream became my friend- lost ridiculous amount of weight, was thinking of writing a book ' how I lost 3 stone in 3 months' I was sure some people would buy it- unfortunately appetite returned and weight is back.

    4 weeks in throat was painful but easily controlled with dissolvable mst ( if you go down this route make sure you get laxatives). My skin was ok, they advise you just to use water and will prescribe a wash/ moisturiser. Voice was a bit Kate winslet at the end of titanic 'jack, jack' but has since returned, though slightly lower- my singing days are def over!

    Please contact me if I can help further- it was actually an ok treatment.

    Best wishes to you.

  • Hello Cooperkia,

    Many thanks for your humour, laughter is a the best medicine ☺.

    It helps to get tips as it lowers my anxieties! All the best M

  • Hi Mitch, trying to catch up so I've only just seen your message. Five years ago I found a lump in my neck, by my collar bone. Too near a major blood vessel to biopsy, despite two attempts, but no doubt that's what it was. It's given me no problems and has slightly calcified sincece.

    In February last year I started Carbo/ Gem and Avastin ( which I'm still on)and I noticed the lump has really shrunk. Didn't have RT for it as, again, too near major blood vessel. Did have RT for a lump on my back that became painful in the Summer of 2013 which helped. Had two little dots tattooed on my back to show the exact spot to zap, beforehand. That sort of RT only needed one dose so prob very different from what you'll have.

    Good Luck, keep your chin up,

    Love Solange

  • Dear Solange,

    Thank you for sharing your experiences, much appreciated! Wish you all the best with your treatment. Yes, keeping our chins up is vital ☺

    Mox

  • I had radio as the third element of BC treatment. No side effects as such, but I did find it surprisingly tiring. Perhaps because the treatment had been going on by then for such a long time. Someone else has mentioned skin care. I had an aloe vera moisturiser which was nice.

    Good luck with it!

  • Dear Mac27,

    Many thanks for the tips.

    Wish u well. M☺

  • Hi I had 20 sessions of radiotherapy on my pelvic and stomach area after my chemo and although the tiredness increased the more I had I still could function ok, just rested more. I even had bracheatherapy (internal radiotherapy) after thst and was fine. Good luck with it, Marilyn

  • Dear Marilyn, thank you for sharing your experiences, it does help!

    Best wishes, M

  • Hello Mitch,

    Sorry to hear your news!

    I was diagnosed in October 2011, Stage 1C, clear cell, serous and well differentiated cells. Hysterectomy in September followed by Carboplatin/Taxol over 6 months. I had up until October 2014 been having regular scans over a year and under 'watch and wait' as my scans showed residual disease, and although my CA125 had been yo yo...ing backwards and forwards they did not want to start chemo because it was classified as slow growing and indolent.

    In September I noticed something peculiar happening to my neck (intuition I suppose) so I went to the doctors who deemed that she did not think it was anything to do with my cancer, but ordered a CT scan, at which they detected something, so in turn I had a fine aspirational needle which was not conclusive, and whilst visiting my specialist i noticed a lump appear along side my collar bone, which my consultant said that she was sure was my ovarian cancer, so I had a biopsy and this was confirmed as positive.

    I started chemo in November 2014 of Carbo/Gemzar and Avastin and am heading to my fourth session, and it appears to have reduced my lump.

    Hoping that things are moving along for you.

    Keep me posted and if you need to talk, please message me.

    Best Wishes,

    Janette xxx

  • Hello there,

    I also rarely post on here, but felt like I could maybe help here.

    I had a recurrent diagnosis in 2012 (original diagnosis 2005). I had metastasised OC in my neck and sternum. I had surgery to remove the larger piece in my sternum (a whole other story!) and then radical radiotherapy in the neck area. I did not need the mask.

    I went every day for 4 weeks. Initially the side effects were quite minimal then I developed a very bad throat and had difficulty swallowing - soft foods better but really still quite painful. I used soluble paracetomol with codine - they're very good as do not taste nasty. You can try to gargle with it and help numb your throat a little before eating. I used 'Simple' or 'Sanex Zero' products like shower gel and deodorant - which are nice and affordable - but do not have any chemicals. Also used aqueous cream to wash and moisturise the area.

    The radiated area on my neck did eventually get quite inflamed. The skin broke and it became quite uncomfortable. I saw the nurse and used a cream that is used for burns (can't remember the name), and kept it covered and clean. I went on holiday not long after the treatment and was worried about the sun/sea etc - but with care (sunblock/shade/swimming top) it seemed to clear up really quickly…....got a feeling the salt water was doing some good.

    In preparation….I think I would enjoy your food. Go for nice meals out, then plan a soft food diet - nice soups, mashed potato, slow cooked meats, fruit and veggie smoothies etc. Get a Netflix membership, watch a good 'box set', maybe think of things you could do on the treatment days before/after the radiotherapy (which will only take about 10 mins)…..get into a good book to help with journey to/from the hospital and treat yourself regularly!

    The lump in my neck stopped growing - so the radiotherapy I had worked.

    Sadly I am back in treatment again now, for disease in a different area - and I am no. 5 in to 6 rounds of chemo with Avastin…..again this is a whole other story!

    Good luck with it. In my experience radio is easier to take than chemo or surgery.

    Diane x

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