Viewer Comments: Esophageal Cancer - Symptoms and Signs

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The eMedicineHealth doctors ask about Esophageal Cancer:

Esophageal Cancer - Symptoms and Signs

What were the symptoms and signs you experienced with esophageal cancer?

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Comment from: Dottie, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: November 19

I was perfectly healthy not overweight had just gone to my doctor to get the results of my physical exam. He said everything was great! Then I mentioned in passing that the only small problem I was having was swallowing unless I drank a lot of fluids. He ordered some Protonix and a swallow study. I went to for an endoscopy and they took a biopsy of a tumor that was blocking the food. It was the dreaded cancer. I'm seeing an oncologist who wants to do chemo and radiation but says no surgery since It spread to my lymph nodes and am at stage 3. I am so scared and it's happening so fast. I don't have any pain but because of all treatment and thoughts of suffering through them with really no hope of long recovery, I'm at my wits end. I don't understand how this could happen so suddenly.

Comment from: Carol, 55-64 Male (Patient) Published: March 19

My husband was diagnosed with esophageal cancer last October. He is in hospice. He started vomiting blood the last time, he was home. No one knows the feeling of someone that you love is slowly dying.

Comment from: EMMY, 45-54 Male (Patient) Published: August 11

I have had acid reflux for years. I thought I had it under control, one day I was sitting at home eating some scallops and rice when all of a sudden I couldn't swallow. The food wouldn't go down and it wouldn't come back up. I ran to the sink as I was losing my air. Then all of a sudden the food comes up. I was at home by myself at the time so that scared the crap out of me. I told my wife and she made me go to my doctor where they did a test. I couldn't swallow the pill they gave me until I drank three glasses of water. We knew there was a problem so we set up and endoscope. I was put to sleep and my doctor told me he could widen my esophagus and that it was a common thing. I agreed. When I woke up in the recovery room my doctor came in to see me. He told me he could not widen my esophagus. He told me that my stomach was raw so he did do a biopsy and to me call him in a couple of days. I called a few days later. The doctor told me that the results were not good and that they wanted to do a double take. He told me that the results I received usually indicate cancer. They wanted to be very aggressive in the first 30 days. I have had 30 radiation treatments and two types chemotherapy on. I recently had an X-ray and my doctors were very happy with the results. I do have a surgery coming up later this month. I am scared, but coming on to this site makes me feel better. I told a good friend at work what is going on and he is going to get tested.

Comment from: missy 8883, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: December 14

I was diagnose with esophageal cancer in 2004. I only had symptoms for two and a half weeks when I went to the doctor. One day, I felt like I had food stuck in my esophagus. They did a scope and found a tumor. I had surgery and they removed my esophagus and did a stomach pull-up. The surgeon was amazed that I got into a doctor as soon as I did. I have been cancer free for more than five years. The cancer was caught soon enough and had perforated the esophageal wall, so I did not have to get any chemotherapy or radiation. My cancer was caught in stage 1. The survival rate of such a cancer is very low, I'm told. I have CT scans for more than five years before my cancer was diagnosed and everything was always fine. Listen to your body. It can save your life.

Comment from: Mick, 45-54 Male (Patient) Published: August 11

I began having problems keeping food down especially meat and bread, eventually anything. Over a period of 3 months whilst I was working away my weight loss was in the region of 25kg,I knew something drastically wrong, upon my return home to South Africa I collapsed on the 1st day and was rushed to hospital dehydrated and admitted, the following day a scope was carried out, the resulting prognosis was not good. T3 N1 and I was informed the tumor was too large to operate on. The course of treatment was decided upon by a dedicated team of doctors, they gave me intensive chemo for 3weeks followed by chemo and radiation for another 3 weeks in the hope of shrinking the tumor to enable them to operate, it worked and I was scheduled for surgery 6 weeks later. My Esophagus was taken out with stomach substitution I believe it's known as pull through. I was given follow up chemo 3 months later for; 1 week/3months, I used to call it my take away. This all took place 5 years and 9 months ago, my oncologist has told me he no longer needs to see me, and that I am cancer free, for which I am eternally grateful. The whole experience has humbled me and I can only say never give up miracles do happen.

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Patient Comments & Reviews

The eMedicineHealth doctors ask about Esophageal Cancer:

Esophageal Cancer - Diagnosis

How was your esophageal cancer diagnosed?

Esophageal Cancer - Treatment

What treatment has been effective for your esophageal cancer?

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