Vocal cord cancer and mucus

Occasional Contributor

Vocal cord cancer and mucus

Hi all

I will make this a quick post. I was diagnosed with displasia on my vocal cords last December. I was told that would lead to cancer so I entered into the radio therapy treatments after minor throat surgery and had 37 radio therapy treatments over 7 weeks and had the usual side effects. Some worse that others.

I dealt with those side effects with optimism however my treatment finished March this year and I still have a mucus build up causing me to cough to the point where I have 7 fractured ribs. 

I failed my last PET scan 2 months ago and the oncologist was adamant it was due to the cough and after 6 months of recovery I still have uncontrollable coughing due to the mucus build up. 

It took the drs 6 months to finally realise the mucus build up was due to the radio therapy and not my lifestyle to understand that my body is trying to protect itself from the burns/scaring within my throat by sending mucus to my vocal cords.

This has been extremely frustrating and would like any help or advice, would be greatly appreciated


That said just someone to connect with would be awesome as my family are tired of me complaining:)


Super Contributor

Re: Vocal cord cancer and mucus

Hi Garth,

Wow, what an ordeal you've been through.

I can't even imagine the coughing that could cause you fracture your ribs like that.

I'm glad that you finally have a diagnosis for the cause of the coughing.

I'm sure there are at least a few people here who have been through similar issues.


What sort of treatment are you having now?



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Frequent Contributor

Re: Vocal cord cancer and mucus

Well done, hope you are recovering soon. 

Occasional Contributor

Re: Vocal cord cancer and mucus

Hi there

Thank you for responding. Turns out I have osteopenia which means I have low bone density so yay, another condition I have to take meds for. Its the precursor to osteoporosis but its not a big deal.


But yes the coughing was insanely intense to the point where I thought I would pass out. It is settling down a bit but as I am transitioning back into the workplace I find it distressing to try and hide not just the cough but the mucus that follows (I work in an office).


I must have gone to the toilet at least 12 times today just to heave it up and I am sure that did not go unnoticed. I am relatively new to this workplace and to be honest just don't feel comfortable enough to explain what is going on. That said my boss is cool so I will try and work from home where I dont have to worry about such thinks


Ribs have healed (I assume) and I get pet scan results next week and hopefully will be in remission so hopefully no more treatment!

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