Surgery #2 - 5 Days Post-op Intraoral

Good Morning All! I thought I’d take a few minutes to update you on my 2nd intraoral surgery. Thanks to @Isaiah_40_31 and @Jules for checking in on me, your support and encouragement is so greatly appreciated.

My surgery was this past Friday, everything went well, a 3+cm very pointy right SP was removed; Dr. O’Connell didn’t remove my tonsil this time, he cut through it to make the incision to remove the SP(?) (weird I thought but anyway). I was feeling quite a bit different post surgery this time than from the first surgery, I chalk that up to me being such a mess prior to surgery #1 that any slight improvement was a massive improvement for me.

Since I had had virtually no pain on the right pre-surgery, other symptoms such as vertigo, tinnitus, lump feeling and such, I got a rude awakening! I thought I was doing quite well and then a couple days post-op BAM! Pain so bad I have constant nausea (take gravel to control) I can’t get any food down at all, I am still able to drink my tea and honey, anything other than liquid rubs up against all the sores and scabs and yikes I almost pass out! The inside of my mouth & throat look like a toxic waste land; I know it will eventually get better, but man I really was hoping to not have my Christmas dinner come out of a blender LOL!

I am, as expected exhausted, I sleep as much as I can, I’ve basically been in bed going on 6 days now, and will continue to be in bed as long as is needed. I am fortunate to have my husband here to take care of me and my 3 dogs are more than happy to snuggle up with me 24/7.

On a side note, I have had plenty of time to catch up with Monty Don & Gardeners’ World; I am pleased to say I have immense optimism for my new veg & flower garden in 2021 and the fact that I will, after 5 + years, be physically well enough/able to do it at all. I have even planned a few acres in our west pasture for a bee haven and orchard, how amazing will that be?

Well, Eagle Syndrome, it has been one hell of a journey, I’m not done yet but I can see the light now; I’m thankful to have found this forum and the courage to never give up. :pray:


so glad you have a sense of humor as well as optimism in the face of felling like crap. My 2 dogs like to snuggle too so I got a good chuckle out of your post. I look forward to hearing about that new garden and seeing pix of it. After my 1st surgery in april, I spent my recovery poking around in mine. Im an avid gardener but not much space. I can visualize your west pasture.
Keep up on those pain meds and I hope my xmas you can at least have some mashed potatoes! My next surgery is Monday so Ill probably be going dark for a couple weeks while travelling,etc. So wishing you the best till then. :hugs:


Thanks @Snapple2020, all the best for your surgery, I shall be thinking of you as I slurp my runny mash! All the best for 2021, speedy recovery my friend. :pray:

haha. Thank you weez!

So sorry that it’s more painful this time- as you say, if you were in alot of pain before 1st surgery then maybe that’s why it didn’t seem as bad last time! Glad that you have hubby to look after you, as well as the dogs, & that as Snapple says you still have your sense of humour! I hope that things improve for you soon- the garden plans sound wonderful!
Gentle hugs :pray: :bouquet: :hugs:

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So good to hear from you, Weezie! Glad your surgery is done & your on the recovery end of things. I agree w/ Snapple, your positive mindset & goal setting will go far toward helping you mend. I am so sorry for your leap into pain, but it’s not unexpected as our bodies get some relief from pain/swelling for a couple of days after surgery from the anesthesia & anti-inflammatory meds used during surgery. Then BAM! we get hit on days 3-6 with the worst pain. I wish all doctors would Rx prednisone post op as it really helps keep the swelling down which keeps some of what you went through/are going through at bay.

I know you’re in Canada so don’t celebrate Thanksgiving, but I can commiserate w/ your Christmas situation as I had my first ES surgery just before TG in 2014 & had to have my TG dinner dropped in a blender & made into a soft mush so I could swallow it. So happy that time is past & it will be for you, too, very soon, I hope! I was also dog-sitting for my in-laws at the time of my first surgery & their little Papillon came & snuggled w/ me every day for a week as I sat in our recliner. I’m glad you have cuddle buddies! Dogs are the best!!

Your garden sounds amazing as do your spring & summer plans for it. I have a dream of having a garden like that. Unfortunately, we have deer, rabbits, gophers, & squirrels that decimate anything I try to grow in my yard. At this point only the toughest (or most foul tasting!) plants have survived.

So glad you’re seeing the light at the end of this long dark tunnel. Keep moving toward it!!



@Weezie65 Any improvement in your dizziness and tinnitus?

Honestly, it is way too early to comment as I am experiencing all kinds of things from the surgery. Time will tell as my body heals.

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@Weezie65 Well this sounds pretty icky at the moment but how nice to have the second surgery in the rearview! Garden plans are the best. I wish you calming thoughts of bees and trees. I am sending my best healing thoughts in your direction.


Thanks so much @onelessstyloid, I am actually feeling a little better today, hopefully I am on my way back. I do know from last time though that I had days of progress and then got knocked back a bit; I am going to take things slow and rest probably more than I need, but I am sure I will be glad I did. And yes, I had so much anxiety over the second surgery that I really got myself in a knot, I am glad it is in the rearview and I can restart my life. Cheers!


Hope Everything will work out for you the best!
I’m myself getting ready for a surgery in a week. It’s gonna be intraoral as well, with Local Anastasia .
My doctor not ENT doctor, he is kinda a mouth surgeon.
The insision is gonna be actually at the back of my lower teeth. Then he will search for the bone, it should be near, then use some kind of device to put it over the bone and cut it. As I understood the device can slide up to on the bone till almost the root of it. But not sure, need to confirm.
It’s not my favorite approach, but I this is what I got on hands, no other doctor would offer help. So I’m taking this deal. I have some concerns and I rose them up, for example:

  • to search for the bone he will use his finger. But the insision is gonna be one centimeter, so how he can do the searching with his finger? Maybe he meant outside I will make sure about it when I see him next time.

  • local anesthesia, I would prefer general, but he said that it’s for the best of my health.
    / how long is the fragment he will be able to cut with this technique, I need to check that too.

    I guess that’s it. Thank you for letting me get my thoughts together with your post.

Can I ask you, why did you or your doctor chose the intraoral approach?
What are the reasons?
Did you actually have a choice?
And how do you feel or felt about this decision?

My bone is down my tongue, under it, almost at the root. It was one of the reasons I actually agreed why intraoral. The insision itself will be about one or 1.5 cm away from the tip of the bone. Was for your bone location the same? Or you had it behind the tonsils? It’s a common location for it as I understood, but for some reason mine is not there.

I wish you a speedy recovery :hugs: and send you my prayers :pray: I wish you to feel pain free and joyful :rose:


I’d want to know also if he’ll monitor nerves during surgery- most surgeons do as there are cranial nerves in the area that could easily be irritated & damaged. You could be left with some facial paralysis otherwise. I’d also want to know if the end of the styloid process that he breaks off will be smooth- if it’s left at all jagged then this could irritate nerves etc & you could end up worse off…
I think often the styloids do grow behind the tonsils right, but the length & angle can vary.
I would be a little concerned about the small incision & that he’ll be feeling about for the bone with his finger, although to be fair I don’t know how it’s usually done with introral surgery- that’s why many doctors do external surgery, because they can open up more & see the whole area better. But many members have had successful surgery with introral…
When deciding about whether to have surgery, there is a balance between how much your quality of life is affected by symptoms, & the risks of surgery…that’s a decision we all have to make individually.

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Hi @natasha, thanks for your kind words. Honestly, I think the surgical approach that is used really depends on your surgeon. My surgeon was a head & neck surgeon and the ONLY surgeon in my area of the country that performed surgeries for Eagle Syndrome; I was not given a surgical option, he simply explained his approach and what to expect post op.

I strongly recommend that if you have concerns you address them with the surgeon before you proceed, It is critical that you way the risks of the surgery with how the symptoms currently affect your life. I was 100% sure that I would gain some relief, and I did, I had the second surgery to hopefully take care of the symptoms of that side and prevent potential progression of symptoms going forward.

As I am healing, I have no doubt at all that I have made the right decision. You need to be completely confident in your surgeon and your decision to proceed. If you are unsure, I would look for a second opinion, which I know is not easy to find; this forum is a wealth of information from others like yourself who have this condition and have suffered too, we all know what you are going through. Stay strong, keep advocating for yourself, never give up. Sending hugs, take care.


Hi natasha,

I’m wondering how your ES was diagnosed? Did you have a CT scan or was it a panoramic x-ray or cbct scan? ES is typically diagnosed by a CT scan & the position of the styloid process & whether or not the stylohyoid ligament is calcified are visible in a CT scan, as well. A CT scan would also enable your surgeon to have a better idea of what he’s dealing with than the panoramic x-ray or cbct scans.

I totally agree w/ Jules that during your surgery, monitoring the cranial nerves that run through that area is critical. There is so much to be aware of. We don’t want to discourage you, but do want you to make the safest, most informed decision possible about having this surgery.

Do you think that prior to your surgery, your surgeon would be willing to consult w/ a surgeon in the UK or US who does these surgeries on a more regular basis? That makes more sense to me than learning how to do it from watching videos of the surgery. There is much that can be learned through conversation that doesn’t come out in detail in a video unless the video is very accurately & thoroughly narrated.

Contacts for your surgeon:

Mr. Axon in England - Addenbrooks Hospital, Cambridge (Otolaryngologist/ Skull base surgeon; also does private work at Spire Lea hospital, Cambridge, for Spire Health care. Also works with •Dr Higgins, Neuuroradiologist at Addenbrooks) 01223 256052 – his secretary
Dr. Hussein Samji (USA) -
Dr. Trevor Hackman (USA) - UNC Ear, Nose and Throat Oncology Clinic, Chapel Hill, NC 27514, (984) 974-6484 - Does both intraoral & external approaches for ES surgery


Hi Isaiah,
I’m post surgery.
We did it🎉
3 cm of the bone was removed, it was 4.5 cm by CT scan calculations.
Now I’m in a healing process.
I cannot tell yet anything about the pain, as there is mild post surgical pain that overrides everything.

hello, Jules,

I’m post surgery, we did it🎉
The doctor removed about three cm of the bone, it was 4,5 cm by the CT scan calculations.
Now I’m in a healing process . But it’s all good.

Best wishes

Glad it’s done; I have been praying for you. Just be prepared for ups & downs with recovery, there may be swelling which can sometimes flare the ES pain up worse for a few days. Lots of rest, icing & keeping semi-upright will help. I hope you have someone to help take care of you? God bless :bouquet: :hugs: :pray:

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Jules, thanks :hugs:
Yes, it’s ups and downs, thank you for reminding me about it.

I looked inside my mouth, it’s looks scary. Very deep cut.
I have wiggling knees when I see it.
I did not realize it would be so deep
Waiting on tomorrow

Hi natasha,
I’m so relieved you came out well on the other side of surgery. Yes, recovery can be a bit of a roller coaster ride. Pain will be less some days then worse on others then less again as your body heals. Starting about the 3rd or 4th week after intraoral surgery you should really begin to notice some improvement though it can take longer.

I applaud your doctor for being willing to take on your “challenge” & to have done so seemingly successfully. Please let us know if you have questions as you go through the healing process. We’ll do our best to answer & encourage you.

:hugs: :pray:t3:


Hello, day 4 after the surgery,
I’m still in pain, it’s not in the mouth though, it’s in side of the neck, where bone was and where is the insision. I feel tension and pressure over there, but no redness on the neck. This is what doctor told me look for.
Still cannot open my mouth more then swollow a pill.
I thought by day 4 I would feel better