I am over this shit! For the past eight weeks I have been fighting what we think is an infection on my chin. It started out the size of a dime and now measures 3 inches long. More shrapnel from surgery has worked it's way out of my neck just before this began. I now have a cap full of staples, wires, and tips from where they inserted a Doppler wire when they removed the cancerous tongue!
To the right of this is where infection began. Small at first, I went to the doctor. I tried a penicillin based antibiotic, Cephalexin. Ten days latter some relief, but not enough to solve the problem. So another ten days of the same drug. Twenty days later the wound had drained but was still not looking good. It was about five days later when I saw the doctor again and he put me on Dicloxacillian for another two weeks.
At the end of the two weeks the drug did absolutely nothing. In fact the infection site became bigger, harder, and SO much more painful. The pain is different than I'm used to. Yes, I said used to because I have several problems with pain in my jaw area, neck, and lower back. But even with medication this pain is different. It's like a hundred tiny needles stab me in the face and then it's gone. It's quick and comes out of nowhere. I'm assuming nerve pain? Bottom line is, my pain meds do nothing for it.
Finally I called the doctor when Dicloxacillian was finished and told him it didn't work at all. Now back to the one sulfur based drug that has worked in the past, but upsets my stomach, Extra Strength Bactrim. When I take this I just want to lay in bed and not move. The more I move the more it seems to upset my stomach. At this point my cheek is so swollen I bite it when I try to eat anything.
Dinner has always taken me a long time to eat since I came off the feeding tube. Now it can take over an hour! I'm at a deficit with the new tongue fashioned from my forearm. The mobility is restricted and because it's smaller than what a normal tongue is, it's just harder to manipulate food. The swelling is making it even more difficult. I'm cutting up my food tiny pieces and only chewing half my normal amount while puffing up my mouth with air to chew so I avoid biting my cheek.
Since I began eating solid foods, I have always had to think when I eat. Where is the food at? What can I do to move it where I want it? A swig of water? A tilt of the head? Or maybe putting the fork back in my mouth the reposition the bolus of food. Sometimes I can't even hold a conversation at dinner because I'm concentrating on chewing. Over the years I've become more proficient allowing me to eat with friends without appearing like a total crazy person. The hard part is when I get something caught between my gum and cheek and it won't move. On a rare occasion I have to use my finger, which I try to avoid.
I've only been on the Bactrim for a few days now so the jury is out on whether it works or not. I see my doctor again in a few days and we'll go from there. I'm a little concerned if the Bactrim doesn't help because that could mean it's not an infection after all. I think the next step is a biopsy and/or hospitalization. I'm either becoming immune to antibiotics or my cancer is back. A few areas of my neck appear to have slightly swollen nymph node activity. When they did my neck dissection during my cancer surgery they found cancer in the lymph nodes and that's what prompted the need for radiation and chemotherapy. I would NEVER suggest radiation to the face unless it was your last option. I'm not sure I have the energy to go through all that again.
I don't want to leave the house. I look hideous. I can't do anything outdoors for fear of sweating and making the infection worse. I can't take anymore of this shit! Just shoot me! I'm FK'N MISERABLE! And maybe a little bitchy too...more than usual!
No Peace this time...B