I have been waiting to go back into hospital to have some of the "flap" removed. It's called a De-bulking. It just means reducing some of the artificial tongue to enable me to speak and eat better. I suppose it is difficult to get it just right at the original operation and better to give you too much rather than too little. I got my date to go into the RVI Newcastle on 15th November and was told that I would need an "awake fibreoptic intubation". Apparently this is because of scaring in my throat from the first op - it is a procedure that takes place before they put you "under" which entails putting a camera up your nose and down the back of your throat to enable the anaesthetist to see where he's going! It takes about 50 minutes and is not a very pleasant experience. I'm told I will need this procedure every time I need surgery in the future. A jolly prospect! The operation over and I was allowed home the following day. My tongue looked good and the flap bit was now pink for the first time.
It's now three week's on and the stitch line on my tongue has gone all lumpy (overgranulation) so can't honestly say I feel much benefit as yet. Saw my consultant last week and he assures me it will settle down. Also my neck feels very tight, as if I'm choking, which is not very pleasant. Hopefully that too will settle down. The positive side is that my own tongue has more room to move and I am better able to control food. I am managing to eat slightly more lumpy food. I am to have a CT scan soon so will report back when I know more.
As I mentioned previously, I have had some Christmas cards designed and as a final push to raise funds for the Mouth Cancer Foundation I, with a lot of help from my friends, had a stall in the reception area of North Tyneside General Hospital. We raised a further £60 and, hopefully, this week can send off a cheque for £1,300. It has been a really action packed week as my Mum celebrated her 80th birthday on Wednesday and I organised a party for 45 people in the house. We also went out for a meal as a family, which was the first time I had "eaten out". The restaurant kindly pureed my meal and I managed to get it down o.k. but by the end of the evening I was feeling a bit sickly and had to get out for some air. I think I was just tired.
Well its nearly Christmas and lots to do beforehand. Happy Christmas to anyone reading this and a peaceful and healthy new year.