breast reconstruction

Hi all,
I am new to this site and been told last Tuesday that I have breast cancer and need a mx. Going through an emotional crisis at the moment and worrying about my 15 months old twins - what if!!!
If someone can give me some advise:

  1. Anyone didn’t have a reconstruction during the mx? How do you feel afterward and how it affetcs your life?

Hi Kenni - i’m really sorry you’ve been diagnosed and found yourself here. You’ll get tons of support on here - i’m positive of that.The first while is completely overwhelming - you’re not alone. Lots of women have very young children and will completely understand your feelings ( as too will those who’s kids aren’t young )

You’ll get some responses soon i’m sure. i had immediate recon so can’t answer your question. You might want to post again - it looks like you got cut off.

You’ll get through this.

Kindest thoughts


Welcome sweetie - to the world of breast cancer. Unfortunately, it’s a great big club, so no worries about going through this on your own. It seems as if you got cut off at question no. 2 - so feel free to post again.

You’re obviously much younger than I, with twins the same age as my granddaughter. What a to-do for you, I bet you feel as if your world has come crashing down on top of you, and you’re frightened to death. Well, we all felt like that - no matter what age - and that’s why we’re all here to help.

I had a mastectomy and immediate reconstruction in November 2008, and got through it ok - and so will you. The operation really isn’t that scary at all, honest. If you don’t have a reconstruction at the same time as the mastectomy, you’ll obviously get over it all much quicker, but if it’s important to you to feel/look relatively ‘normal’ straight away, then immediate recon it is. Just be aware that it’ll be much harder for you to deal with the twins re: picking them up, etc.

Somebody will be along soon - I’m sure - who will have been in a similar situation to you, and who will be able to advise you more. Take care my love, and take one day at a time - you’ll be just fine. Much love, xJacqx.

Hi Kenni,

I agree with you this is totally awful, i was diagnosed early march and totally totally know what you are feeling, i just feel so sorry for you, and myself and all the other lovely women going through this. I can’t help with the mastectomy/reconstruction decision as i had the lump removed, but i can help by sending you huge cyber hugs and letting you know you are not in this alone. There are far too many young mums like us with this but i think a lot of them have ended up here and do help each other. PM me if you think it might help you at all,

lots and lots of love

Hi Kenni,

Welcome to the Breast Cancer Care discussion forums, it’s good to see that you’re getting good support from your fellow forum users.

I have put for you below links to some of BCC’s publications which you may find useful:


Reconstruction animation:

Hope these help. Take care,
Jo, Facilitator

HI Kenni
So sorry to hear about your diagnosis. It’s all very scarey and the what if’s are really hard to bear too.

I had a mastectomy and have only just had reconstruction nearly 2 1/2 years after the mastectomy. I can honestly say that I didn’t really let if affect me. I just got on with it. I wore a bra with my prothesis all the time and yes I covered up in the gym etc as I didn’t want people looking but I’m very much the sort of person who just gets on with things as that’s the way it is and it wasn’t permanent if I didn’t want it to be. I knew that I had the option of reconstruction later on down the line but the most important thing at the time was getting me well again which is the same for you.

Also, the time gave me plenty of thinking time to think about what I actually wanted in terms of reconstruction and discuss it with my plastic surgeon. That time was well spent speaking with people, looking at results, discussing with the surgeon the best options for me etc.

Hope it all goes smoothly for you.
Ruby xx


I had a mastectomy in March 07. I asked for an immediate reconstruction but couldn’t have one. I then had a delayed recon this February, so three years on. It took me that long to be able to face further surgery , after all the BC treatment. I have friends who have had mastectomies, and have decided not to have a recon, so it is a very personal decision.

For me, I just got fed up with the practicalities of only having one breast - clothes, changing in the communal changing room at the gym, plus I really hated taking the prosthesis out at night and putting it in its box on the floor by my bed, it all seemed so surreal. My OH always said that it didn’t matter to him (it helps that he is a legs & bum sort of man!). It always felt like I was lost in some sort of BC limboland until I had made the decision to have the recon. It was like I couldn’t move on. But now, even though I’m only part way through the recon process, I feel so much more settled about my life.

Interestingly, although immediate recons look much better (much less scaring, and no need to take a skin flap from elsewhere) research shows that ladies who have had a delayed recon are happier with the result. I assume that’s because with an immediate recon you are comparing it with the real thing, but with a delayed recon you are comparing it with a flat chest & mastectomy scar, plus you realise that the area will be numb, and have hopefully already come to accept that after a mastectomy any replacement is always going to be a compromise of some sort.

So, personally I would have had an immediate recon if I could, and I always felt somewhat dissatisfied with a mastectomy, mainly down to practicalities of clothing etc, but I’ve go there in the end. And in the meantime I managed OK with a prosthesis.

Hi Kenni

Sorry to hear about your diagnosis. I was diagnosed 11 months ago, when my baby boy was only nine months old so I know how scared you must be feeling. I just wanted to say that your babies will help you through this scary journey and you will find an amazing strength within yourself that you probably didn’t even know you had (after all, you’re a mummy and that can be very hard-going sometimes!)

I had a lumpectomy in June, and four weeks of radiotherapy. I have now decided to have a double mastectomy as I am so worried and scared about the cancer coming back. I have been offered immediate reconstruction so have decided to take this option. You probably won’t be able to have an immediate reconstruction as you will likely have to have radiotherapy.

You will find lots of friends on here, and so many of us know what you’re going through. Once you have your treatment plan sorted out, you will feel a bit more settled, I promise.

Lots of love to you and your babies

Shenagh xx

Thank you all for getting back to me. I feel I am not alone now that I have read all your posts.
The other question I was going to ask is how long do you have to wait before the actual mx operation once you were diagnosed.It has been over a week now since I known but no date has been given to me yet. I have also seen the plastic surgeon already and he has given me a few options re breast reconstruction.
I have been told that from my CT scan and bone scan that the cancer has not spread and they put me on Tamoxifen now. The consultant can guarantee this until the mx and examined in the lab and then he will decide my course of treatment.
I am so scare the cancer might spread during this waiting period. I am paranoid now and every ache and pain I will start thinking it is spreading.

Hi Kenni,

sorry you find yourself here, I had my dx in Feb and 10 days later had a skin sparing radical mx with LD flap reconstruction and now chemo. It is a very personal decision depending on your personal preferences/treatment plan and state of mind as well I think. Maybe you have access to a BCC nurse who can show you some pictures of your surgeons work showing the differences between the surgeries and options available. Don’t rush into any decisions. There are pros and cons for both options and only you can decide what’s right for you.
The forums are a great place of support! Like Shenagh said, once your treatment plan is underway you know what’s ahead of you. I found having young children helped to keep me in a familiar routine of school runs and after school activities, keeping busy all round helps me cope and be strong for my family.
Big hugs to you and your babies! Tinaxxx

I think I was diagnosed on the 31st October, and my op. was 24th November, so 3 and a half weeks. It shouldn’t be any longer than that. They will fit you in as soon as they have a slot. I know how you feel, 'cos I was frantic about any spread during the wait, but my BCC said it would be fine, and that I would only need to worry if it was left for some months. Don’t forget, one day at a time, honey. x

Hi again Kenni - i was 23 days between diagnosis and MX - and like someone else says iwas told categorically it was months that made a difference not days. take care - thinking of you

Lynn x.

Hi Kenni,
I had a mx with a wait of two and a half months because I got ill with a viral inf and had no reconstruction. I couldn’t make that choice with the mx diagnosis so just had the simple operation.
Operation is fine because everyone at the hospital will understand and make you feel safe. I was quite neurotic beforehand and a BCN met me at the door, which was great! Recovery in hospital and came home without drains. You will have to accept every drop of help that is offered to you with your little twins because even cuddling them will be a strain on your scar site. It is debilitating at first but you bcome adept at using your arm on the other side. I had some pain but took plenty of painkillers. I am now 12 weeks since dx and comfortable wearing my prosthesis in a comfy sports bra and feeling more confident that body is level and symmetrical. Reconstruction plan is somewhere in the future…
It is a horrid lonely experience because everything is new to you at first and you are set apart from your friends without real BC knowledge but you will have so much support here from other women of all ages and all very different stories. You will hear how others coped and may take tips from them to help your friends and family
cope with your predicament.

However I’m sure you would love to hear from other young Mums and they will be able to identify with your home situation. I have little twins next door who I’m greatly involved with but recognise that it’s not easy with two at the same age!!!

You can send me a message any time if you want any specific information about a mx without a reconstruction. I will be so happy to help in any way.

With big supportive hugs to you from Welsh girl x

Hi to all,
I have been to see my plastic surgeon and decided not to have a reconstruction done not as I want to have time with my twins. To be truthful I am sort of an oldish mum (44 to be precise) and the twins come as a surprise to me and my husband.

Since I don’t want the reconstruction, the consultant has schedule me in for 24th May for the MX. Fingers crossed that everything will be okay.

Personally I think I will be able to cope without a breast but what I am worry about is when I am out in the public and keep on thinking that people are looking at my chest. Do any of you feel that?

The twins seem to sense that something is not right and my little girl is quite clingy whereas the boy is quite subtle. Looking at them make me want to fight this horrible horrible sickness.

Thank you for your supports. It does help me understand and cope better with my situation.

Hi Kenni

I had a mastectomy in Oct 2008 and one of the things I was worried about was people “scrutinising” my chest afterwards. I only noticed two people doing this openly, I am sure other people did it but I didn’t notice. To be honest I would have probably done the same thing to women who had had a mastectomy without realising I had done it!

I went to a specialist shop for a bra fitting and then spent some time with my breast form fitter getting my breast form right. I wear quite tight fitting tops quite confidently and my close family and friends say it is impossible to tell which is the real breast and which is the prosthesis. The main problem I found is when I bent forward even in some high necked tops the top would gape and you could see right down my top. I am 40E so the weight of the prosthesis pulls the bra cup down and you can see my scar. I have got around this by being careful about which neckline I choose and then using body tape to secure my top if necessary.

People might look the first time they see you after your op but after that most people forget you have had a mastectomy. Now I am comfortable with my breast form, bra and which tops to wear I often forget I have had the op myself when I am fully clothed!

Good luck with everything.
Maude xx

Hi Kenni - I had my MX 22nd April so just over two weeks ago, and wanted to reassure you. I’m same age as you, though don’t have twins just a five year old. Two weeks on though I’m honestly good - back at work and though tired, I feel normal-ish. Everyone’s different and I may well just be lucky, but the MX can be as it was for me, so fingers crossed for you.

Also, wanted to say that I was worried about the breast loss being obvious, but to be honest it’s only me who’s obsessively looking at other women’s breasts! I think because it was such a shock for me, that now I can’t help looking at everyone and worrying whether they have cancer inside them and don’t know. So to answer your question I honestly don’t think anyone will notice. Hope that helps. Good luck with it all. Ask any questions you want, there’s some brilliant people on here who will help. xj