Debra Sheridan 6POSTS

dsheridan@noumagazine.org

Diagnosed with stage 4 squamous cell CA of tonsil in October 2006. Completed treatment on my birthday, February 14, 2007. Cancer free!!!Treatment effects set in before treatment was finished and despite hope, additional therapies and surgeries, the effects, especially of radiation, took hold. Breathing, eating and speaking were significantly impacted. February 2008 a tracheostomy was performed to relieve breathing difficulties due to tracheal stenosis, caused by radiation scarring. This allowed my voice, which had been absent since early January 2007, to be restored over the next several months and after 40 hyperbaric dives to kickstart healing of the irradiated tissues. Multiple dilations and other treatments to relieve recurring stenoses of trachea and esophagus resulted in a total laryngectomy and esophageal reconstruction October 2014. Subsequent scarring closed down my esophagus at the reconstruction sites and a follow up esophageal reconstruction was performed December 2015. I am thrilled to still be alive, having beaten the odds and the obstacles. I happily speak with an electro larynx.

In March I saw an announcement that Niagara Falls would be illuminated burgundy and white/ivory, on Tuesday, April 3 for 15 minutes, to honor

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Editors note:   This article was one of a select few chosen for the inaugural print edition of New Focus Daily which debuted at SURVIVORville

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What is head/neck cancer? It is any type of cancer that originates in the cranial sinuses, the mouth, or the throat. It does not

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Editors note:   All images in this article taken or created by NFD contributor Debra Sheridan. Photography is fun, is readily available, and easily sharable. Anyone

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Many cancer treatments include chemotherapy. Some include chemotherapy concurrent with radiation therapy. I know I was willing to undergo all treatments recommended by my

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  My grandson was 2.5 years old when I captured this image of him. He had just watched his dad drive away to make a

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