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  • Writer's pictureTiel

Soup is coming out my ears

We always knew that 90 minutes wouldn’t be enough time to spend with Peter Mac’s dieticians Kirsty and Isabel.  The impacts of eating, both during and well beyond treatment, are something all head and neck cancer patients and their carers know about all too well.  It was fantastic to be able to relate to the challenges Isabel and Kirsty spoke about, and it was even better to be able to share our own experiences and tips for dealing with the challenges caused by treatment.


Whether it is the fear of a feeding tube, eating scrambled egg and soup until it is coming out your ears, or never being able to drink another drop of ‘resource’ drink, we all have our own story along a fairly familiar path. During treatment it is all about getting the nutrition in – keeping strong and keeping our weight on.  After treatment though things can be tough – at least for a while – while we grapple with changed tastes, dry mouth, and difficulty chewing and swallowing. Eating and drinking is such an important part of our lives and its one we probably took for granted before treatment The good news is that for many of us things do get better, we just have to patient and give ourselves times.  And we adapt – we change our habits, we read menus before we head out, we take our own food, and we manage expectations.


We also spent time talking about these challenges from a carer’s perspective.  Supporting someone through treatment is incredibly tough. It can also be challenging for the carer too after treatment when the experimenting begins on the road to recovery.  Two steps forward, one step back can be equally frustrating for the carer, particularly around big family gatherings like birthday’s and seasonal get togethers.


The 20 members at the meeting wrapped up the meeting hearing about Randall’s ocean swims.  A particularly chilling hobby at this time of year!  Everyone one was quite impressed although I didn’t see anyone pulling on a pair of bathers! 


We look forward to seeing you all at our June meeting where we will be joined by Nadia Rosin, CEO of Head and Neck Cancer Australia.  You can register here of by emailing

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