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Dr. David
Dr. David, Board Certified MD
Category: Medical
Satisfied Customers: 47238
Experience:  Board Certified Physician
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My Mum has had thyroid cancer she has lost most of her voice

Customer Question

Hi my Mum has had thyroid cancer she has lost most of her voice because of this also eating and breathing properly is quite tough for her. About 3 months ago she had part of her Thyroid cartridge removed and replaced with some kind of plastic this was to help eat better but unfortunately her senses have been damaged through this process she is sick alot because of smells and the food not going down properly I just don't know what to do to help. Need some advice really
Submitted: 20 days ago.
Category: Medical
Expert:  DR. EHTISHAM replied 20 days ago.

Hello Clair! My name is***** to JustAnswer. I'm reviewing your question now, and will post back with your reply momentarily.

Customer: replied 20 days ago.
Thank you looking forward to hearing from you.
Customer: replied 20 days ago.
No thank you I will wait for your reply. I haven't got a lot of money sorry
Expert:  DR. EHTISHAM replied 20 days ago.

I am very sorry to hear about your mother

If she can not take anything orally then she should have a PEG(percutaneous endoscopic gastrectomy) tube.

With the help of this tube she can be fed and that will keep her nutritional status in a good state.

The other management will depend upon the extent of tumor to see if the tumor can be surgically removed or not but her feedin problems can be addressed through a PEG tube

I am available to assist you any further till you are satisfied that you have received a 5-star response

Good luck and Regards

Customer: replied 20 days ago.
Hi she had the tumour removed a year ago. She can eat but her taste and smell has been damaged by the last operation. I want to know what can be done to help her? Will her senses come back ? Will it settle down? I'm sorry but I don't feel I have any proper advice? Thanks
Expert:  DR. EHTISHAM replied 20 days ago.

It seems as if her nerve has been damaged during the surgery and I am afraid if the damage is a complete one it might not come back to normal. I am sorry as this might not be the answer you want to hear but this is the most realistic answer at this point

I am available to assist you any further till you are satisfied that you have received a 5-star response

Good luck and Regards

Customer: replied 20 days ago.
Surely there is something that can be done? I hope I don't have to pay for this as feel it's not been very helpful for me
Expert:  DR. EHTISHAM replied 20 days ago.

Ok I will leave this for other expert to answer and help you better

Regards

Customer: replied 20 days ago.
Ok thanks I will wait to hear back.
Expert:  Dr. David replied 20 days ago.

This is Dr. David

I am sorry about your mother .

surgery in the thyroid area can damage nerves which innervate the vocal cords and cause vocal cord paralysis.

she should be getting speech and swallow therapy to help improve her swallowing.

she may have to thic***** *****quids and avoid think liquids to avoid aspiration of liquids into her airway.

she may need an infection into her vocal cord to make it stiff and rigid to help her voice and help prevent liquids from going into her airway.

she may benefit from electrical stimulation of her neck muscles to help her swallowing

http://www.djoglobal.com/vitalstim

this Vitalstim can help electrically stimulate muscles which are needed in swallowing

you should talk to her doctors about this therapy option.

let me know if you have questions.

Customer: replied 20 days ago.
Hi she has already had the injection but it didn't work so the next step was to have part of her Thyroid cartridge removed and replaced with a plastic clip but I have been trying to look up the name of the procedure online but I can't find the name. It's just her senses have gone haywire she eats food then it get won't go down. Or she can smell something that makes her sick she is very down about it she is suffering. She is having vocal therapy but only had one appointment upto now. I hate seeing her like this. I was hoping that it might settle down but it's getting worse. I'm not sure who to speak too about it at the hospital.
Expert:  Dr. David replied 20 days ago.

you should speak to her GP doctor

and get her referred as soon as possible to ENT specialist doctors (eat nose throat) doctors

her ENT doctors should refer her for speech and swallow therapy.

the VitalStim therapy could help her as well.

Customer: replied 20 days ago.
Ok but the GPs are rubbish they don't seem to care that much
Expert:  Dr. David replied 20 days ago.

you may have to see other doctors at larger university medical centers in London possibly.

or private doctors in London.