Not so clear scan!

I haven’t posted since October and my clear scan, this was followed by a scan that showed a tumour in my trachea.

A number of extra scans later, MRI, CT & PET, I was told that this was a serious tumour and that operations on it were rare, very rare and survival chances were, err, less than optimal.

As without the operation survival chances were zero I didn’t see much of a choice!

I was due to be operated on in March but after a new set of scans showed it growing quickly I was admitted to LUMC on the 3rd of February and operated on on the 4th.
The surgeons admitted that they hadn’t done this operation before because it was so rare. I woke up to find my chin stitched to my chest.
This was to make sure that I didn’t move my head up which could/would cause the stitches in the trachea to part and in their words “you’ll drown in your own blood faster than we can get in there to fix it”

I think they were trying to convince me not to move my head back 🙂

I was fed through a nose tube because I couldn’t swallow.
After a week they removed the nose tube at which point we found out that I couldn’t swallow liquids.
Anything liquid went straight into my lungs. During tests I was told that I now knew what waterboarding felt like!
I could manage to swallow things like yoghurt and kwark and they became my main diet.

I was still unable to drink when after 2 weeks in hospital they sent me home.
I had dietary instructions and food supplements to keep me going until I could swallow.
4 weeks after the operation I managed to swallow some water for the first time. Nothing has ever tasted so good 🙂

I still have to be very careful drinking as it’s really easy to end up sending liquids into my lungs. This is because my trachea was shortened considerably and the balance between trachea and oesophagus is wrong.
I still can’t swallow pills.

The good news is that they believe that they have finally removed everything.
I feel great, better than I have in years.

My next scan is in June…

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