Best Time to Have Reconstruction ?

I have finished chemo and will be finishing radiotherapy next week. I will then be starting on Herceptin. My Oncologist has advised that I cannot have a reconstruction whilst taking Herceptin. I will be taking Herceptin for a year and I would really like to have my reconstruction before this treatment finishes as it gives me something positive to focus on after having a mastectomy in June last year.
Can anyone advise ?

Hi kkdaleyk
I had my diep reconstruction done in June whilst on Herceptin and have not had any problems. I had my mastectomy in May 07 and have also had chemo and rads. I did have to wait six months after rads finishing for skin to get back to normal. I finished Herceptin at the end of Nov and like you wanted recon as soon as possible.
What reason has your Onc given for waiting?

Hi kkdaleyk
My onc asked me to wait until finishing Herceptin, the reason being that the op might interfere with my ability to get to the hopital for the three weekly Herceptin treatment. I have now had a tram flap and think he was probably right - I would have found it difficult travelling the 60 mile round trip immediately after the op. However I have read on these threads that some people receive Herceptin at home. Don’t know if this is an option for you.

Had my reconstruction in September 08, two years after mx, and delighted with result.

Good luck, Maggie

Hi All,
Thanks for your replies. They have really helped.
The reason my oncologist gave for not being able to have a reconstruction whilst on Herceptin is that surgeons class Herceptin as a chemo drug ? He said he will write the letter to recommend the recon but he doubts I will not get it until after the Herceptin has finished. I am confused and do not want to wait for over a year ???

i was in the same frame of mind. take your time and it will all come together get the herseptin done 1st, then you will feel on top of the world. then have recon on a happy note xx good luck

Hello I am looking for some advice on reconstruction. I have two more Hecepton treatments and i am done wow what a ride… I was diagnosed with breast cancer Feb 2 2008 at age 34 and now here we are a year later a boob less and ready to get recon.I met with a plastic surgeon and was advised that I will need to have my back muscle removed for my breast and expanders. I hate surgery but I also cant stand wearing this heavy bra. If anyone has had this type of surgery or has any insight please let me know.

Hi manz

Im 33 had bi-lateral mesectomy in dec 08 and had same done on my right side with muscle from my back. Ive found that my right side does feel and look more natural than my left (just had expander in left no muscle). I hate surgery too but its really not as bad as you might expect. Ive just finished being filled got to wait 3 months before i have ports taken out and nipple recon. Let me know how you get on or want anymore info please ask.

Good Luck
Love Leslee xx

I was diagnosed in February 2007, mastectomy in March 2007 with chemo, radiotherapy and a year of Herceptin also.

I too was desperate to get the reconstruction done as I saw this as getting back to ‘normal’. However, I really do believe that having the year on Herceptin was a great time to get my head round it all and get back to a normal routine with my life both personal and work.

I had my reconstruction done on Dec 1st 08 so got my new boob for Xmas. I had the surgery where they take the tissue from the tummy. No muscle was taken from stomach as it wasn’t needed.

Result is very good, scarring has healed quickly and I am about ready to go back to work. I may need a little lipo later on to make the size equal but this won’t be done until about 8 months down the line when the breast has settled in position.

Hope all goes well with your Herceptin and please don’t wish your life away, enjoy the summer (if we get one) and before you know it, your Herceptin will be finished. I was referred to the plastic consultant prior to my Herceptin being finished and I was put on the waiting list. Finished Herceptin in October and surgery done 2 months later. No too bad eh.

Hope all goes well.

Take care
Lesley x

I had my recon done on 2nd December 08…done using the back muscle flap thingy…cant remember what its called. My doc was ace…i can tell you now if ever there was a bloke who knows boobs, its him lol.

Anyway, the oncologist as well as booby doc said I had to wait at least 12 months post radiotherapy to have reconstruction done. Which at the time was fair enough. As the day I finished radiotherapy I found out I had to have a total hysterectomy (results came back clear in the end). So after that, I was sick of hospitals, surgeries and general feeling pants. However…a year on…I had a think about it…took the bull by the horns…and decided to go for it. The result is brilliant, and has me amused greatly. Put it this way the scar from it…well my eldest daughter now uses the > symbol for maths and has renamed it mummys boob…which had her teacher a tad concerned until she explained it. Oh, im 32 now, and doing alright…2 years since dx, and finished all treatment in aug 07…oh the fun of the fair. My booby doc going to ‘fix’ the other side in August once the new boob has a chance to settle down into boobiness if that makes sense.