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Dealing with treatment side effects? Learn about evidence-based therapies to alleviate your symptoms.
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I’m not a head & neck cancer survivor. But I did have local radiation therapy to my neck. So when I read the articles below about the side effect called trismus, I lumped it in along with two of the radiation-induced side effects that I do struggle with, xerostomia and dysphagia.
Living with cancer since early 1994 has taught me that managing cancer is just as important as managing short, long-term and late stage side effects. Both go hand in hand when it comes to your cancer diagnosis.
To give an example of what I mean, consider trismus, xerostomia or dysphagia. When you are considering your cancer diagnosis and possible treatment plan, it makes sense to consider any/all possible side effects at the same time.
When you are thinking about local radiation to your jaw/neck area to zap, in my case, a myeloma lesion but in the case of a H&N survivor, radiation to zap a tumor in your mouth, neck, etc. it makes sense for you to know that you will
all by planning hyperbaric oxygen therapy as soon as your course of radiation therapy concludes. BTW, you will need to get your oncologist to order the HBOT so that your medical insurance will cover the treatment.
I focused on HBOT above however, I could have focused on other evidence-based, non-toxic therapies shown to enhance the efficacy of radiation while you reduce your risk of radiation damage.
Like I said, cancer treatment goes hand in hand with managing the side effects of that cancer treatment.
Are you considering cancer treatments? Have you already had chemo or radiation and you are struggling with side effects of that treatment? Scroll down the page, post a question or comment.
I will reply to you ASAP.
Hang in there,
Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy is a remarkably effective therapy- read more
“Chemoradiotherapy (CRT) for head and neck cancer (HNC) induces side-effects, including trismus, which impairs quality of life by causing difficulty to eat, speak, and maintain good oral hygiene, and by altering social life…
Head and neck cancers (HNC) include cancers of the oral cavity, pharynx, larynx, paranasal sinuses, nasal cavity, and the salivary glands…
Conclusion: Trismus occurrence differed according to radiation dose and cancer location. These findings highlight the necessity of early preventive physiotherapy programs to reduce trismus occurrence…
Trismus is more commonly temporary than permanent. But the earlier you start treatment, the better the chance for a greater recovery. Some treatment options include:
Together with medical intervention, there are things you can do at home to help relieve trismus and prevent it from worsening. You can try these two or three times during the day.
“Patients with ORN with indication for surgical treatment were randomised to either group 1: surgical removal of necrotic mandibular bone supplemented by 30 pre- and 10 postoperative HBO exposures at 243 kPa for 90 min each, or group 2: surgical removal of necrotic bone only.
Primary outcome was healing of ORN one year after surgery evaluated by a clinically adjusted version of the Common Toxicity Criteria of Adverse Events (CTCAE) v 3.0.
Secondary outcomes included xerostomia, unstimulated and stimulated whole salivation rates, trismus, dysphagia, pain,..