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Update February 2015

3 Feb

All has been pretty quiet on the operation front since my cancelled operation in December. But I have had 2 appointments with 2 of my consultants last week.

The first last Wednesday was with Dr Mary Lei my oncologist consultant, and she was very happy with my progress and said I have made remarkable recovery and now doesn’t want to see me for another 12 months. This was great news to hear.

Then last Friday I met with Mr Richard Oakley who is the neck and neck cancer consultant, after having to wait for 2 hours I caught up with him. He first of all he commented that I was looking remarkably well considering all I have been through in the last year and he said no many people who had had one of their carotid artery removed and he was very happy with my progress to date and he doesn’t want to see me for another 6 months, especially as I’m still under another consultant Mr Rubert Obholzer who is the base of skull surgeon, who is going to sort out my next operations.

So I finished last week feeling pretty good. I’ve now come into this week with work being pretty quiet and then yesterday evening I had a call fro Guy hospital, say that they had had cancellation this Thursday and was I available to come in and have the operations I was due in December to help improve my voice and to add a screw anchor in my skull to attached a bone anchored hear aid. Both of which I really need to help me communicate and hear better. I would be able to get the Baha hearing aid fitted for 4-6 weeks and we have to wait for the anchor to heal and for the skin to grow ago the screw, but hopefully the vocal operation should make a different fair quick after the operation.

I did say yes I’m happy to go ahead and this actually fits in very well, as I am quiet work wise and they have confirmed this this morning and they said this should hopefully be a day case and so I should be out the same day. So watch this space for an update later in the week.

Thanks again for all your prayers and support and hopefully this will me another big step forward. I do find the weak and quiet voice a real frustration, so please prayer that this op especially is successfully.

Thanks Neil


Operation Update

18 Dec

Dan my son travelled up with me this morning to Guys for 7am for my 2 small operations. The first operation was to attach a titanium screw to my skull behind my left ear, so that a bone anchored hearing aid can be attached and the second operation was to help improve the strength of my voice.

Unfortunately over the last couple of days I had started to develop a cough and this morning I had a bit of a temperture was starting to feel a bit rough. Sue and Sophy had both been unwell last week and it seems most of kids in Sue’s school have as well. So I was going to be the first one in the theatre and I got changed ready and then when they took my temperature this morning my temperature had increased. The doctors then decided as they would be doing things on my throat it wouldn’t be advisable to go ahead with the operation as it would increase the possibility of further complications. So the operation was postponed and we then was back at home by 9am.

So after being disappointed that I wouldn’t be getting a stronger voice for Christmas, I also realised I wasn’t up to the operation today and have just come home a slept since. The operation should be rescheduled for sometime in January.

Thanks again for all your prayers and support.

One year Aniversary

27 Nov

2014-11-26 10.31.57

Last Friday, the 21st November was a years aniversary since I had my first major operation on my neck and although its been a very tough year I can look back a year on and be thankful to God and the great medical team that I’ve been under that I am still around to enjoy life and enjoy being with my great family and friends who have supported me through this year. It’s often be all these people who have encouraged me and supported me both practically, physically and spiritually along the way who have made the journey easier. So a year on I want to thank you all.

Further news to my last post. I had a call on Tuesday whilst waiting for the train coming home from London. It was one of my consultants rang me and said, “Hi it’s Rupert here (First name terms) we’ve been trying to get you sorted and to get your voice back before Christmas and we have a date, the 18 December, the only issue is that I’m away, but one of my colleagues who’s very good can do it, so do you still want to go ahead?”

My response was YES, very happy to go ahead, as they are just 2 smaller operations and it will also mean that hopefully I will have a better voice for Christmas. So the op is now booked for Thursday the 18 December. The 2 operations are both fairly quick and I could be out on the same day or at the latest the next day, so I’m happy with this news and can then enjoy Christmas hopefully having stronger voice in all the chaos!

As you can see from my current photo I’m still growing my Movember moustache and this is also to remind you that it’s still not too late to sponsor me, you can use this link below to get to my Mo space . So far I have raised £157 and our team of 3 has raised a total of £390 between us, but it would be great if we could reach £500 for the team by the end of the month.

Thanks again for all your love, prayers and support throughout this year. Neil

Update Nov 2014

5 Nov


Today I had another appointment at Guys with Mr Obholzer one of the top consultants looking after me and today was about finding out whether I was going to have another operation to remove the small trace of tumour that had shown up showed up on one of the scans in August.

The good news is I did have a good appointment today, the small bit of tumour left has got smaller over the last 3 months and so the consultant doesn’t want to operate again at this stage and wants to rescan it in 6 months and then make a decision then. But the other good news is he still wants to go ahead with the in bone hearing aid and now also wants to try to fix my voice, which involves an injection of the sort of stuff they use to expand ladies lips! which I’ve been told is collegen and not botox as I was told before and he wants to do this all in one go and hopefully before christmas. So I’m happy. So thanks again for all your prayers and support and you can all look forward to hearing me talk far better again, you lucky people!
I’ll let you know once I get a date through and hopefully you’ll be hearing from me again soon.

Update Oct 2014

28 Oct

After a great summer life has slowly been moving forward and it’s also again been a while since I have put anything down on this blog and there’s a fair bit to write about.

In the last blog I wrote that I was about to start back working a couple of days a week, this started at the end of August and this has continued through September and October and I am now working 4 days a week with some old friends and colleagues. I found the first couple of weeks were pretty tiring but over the weeks since I have started to build up my strength and am now starting to feel a whole lot stronger as time goes on. It has also been great just to be back working again and using all my work skills and experiences, its been especially great that for the last 6 weeks been working with a number of good old friends and colleagues. I also had an encouraging week at one agency, as while I was sitting down to have my strawberry shakes for lunch on the first day there, another freelancer who I didn’t know, was sitting behind me, his name was Stuart and he just turned around and said to me “Ah that’s a familiar smell!” in reference to my shakes, its then turns out that Stuart had also been through a very similar experience to me, as 2 years before he had had another form of throat cancer and had been under that same consultant at Guys and had also had a stomach tube and we shared and talked all week about many of  our shared experiences. I was really encouraged to meet some else by chance in the same industry, who also had been through similar circumstances and who was now fit and well. Stuart like me had also been doing a blog of the whole of his experiences through his treatment.

Another medical milestone was reached in September, as after 7 seven months of insertion in my stomach, I had my stomach tube/peg removed, I had only being using since the summer to take medication. It has been a great freedom to have it removed. But eating is still an ongoing daily challenge as I am still feeding on 6 shakes a day, supplemented by small portions of other soft food, which is still a challenge to eat, but this is still slowly, very slowly improving and I very much now ‘Eat to Live’ and not as I use to ‘Live to Eat’, eating just doesn’t have the same pleasure as it use to.

As for ongoing appointments and treatment, I have found out at an appointment last week with Mr Obholzer that there is a possibility of needing another small operation towards the end of November but this will only we confirmed after another MIR scan this week and we will then get the results within 2 weeks, when a decision will be made.  Sue and myself feel fairly positive about this, as it would be a relatively small operation compared to everything else I been through. Another positive from our meeting was that we will now be able to progress the fitting of a bone attached BAHA hearing aid to my left ear, which would then enable me to to hear normally again. This involves fitting a platinum anchor/screw into my scull just behind my ear and this could be done at the same time as this next operation, this in turn could mean I could have full hearing in both ears just after christmas, as I would have to wait for a few weeks after the operation for the anchor area to heal. This will be a great improvement as I do struggle to hear people talking in environment that are busy and have lots of ambient noise going on around us.

We have also seen a new change in the Jeremy family this September, as our eldest Dan, went off to Southampton University in the mid September. He has settle very quick into student life and has made many new friends. His course has started off busy and he has lots of lectures every day, which is keeping him busy and working hard. He has also got into the halls football team. Sophy has now started in here first year in Sixth form, which has been a bit of a shock, as the workload has significantly increased. Amy has also started her G

I have also got back to playing guitar again after 11 months, which has been another good distraction.

We now are now fast approaching the Movember time of year again. This coming Sunday I will start off being clear shaven and I’m looking for other guys to join my Band of Brothers team. As most of you will be aware Movember has been a significant time of year for me, as during the 2012 Movember campaign is when I discovered the lump on my neck, we are now 2 years down the line. So my motivation for doing Movember again is to contuniue to help men to be more aware of health issues that can effect all men.

I am looking for sponsorship during is time and you will be able to do this during the month of November by using this link 

Also if you want to join or sponsor our Movember team then use this link to our team page

Thanks again for all the prayers and support that you all have given over this last year and progress is still being made and so watch this space and I will keep updating you of my progress over the next couple of weeks.