DIEP reconstruction advice please

I’m due to have my delayed DIEP reconstruction at the beginning of August. I would be grateful if anyone could give me advice on what to take into hospital, what to do, what not to do, etc. Many thanks.

Hi Kaya51
I had a diep in 2013 and believe me it’s not as bad as you think it will be. You will feel like you have been hit by a bus fora few days but they get you out of bed after a couple of days andthen it’s onwards and upwards lol. I took in normal pj’s but you might find that front opening ones are easiest but the trousers did not interfere with the drains so all ok. I also too wipes, baby wash, lipsol, a book sports bra and the essential sweets.
Hope all goes well for you x

This time last Wednesday I was in recovery following a MX and immediate DIEP… I’m 63 and large breasted. I came home on Monday.

The worst bit… cramp in my calf in recovery room …a mystery. 

Any pain in my breast has been no worse than I used to get pre menstrually and only discomfort in tummy. I did have the common  ‘what will happen when I cough ?’  especially when the chest physio said 4 deep breaths, a huff, and a cough every hour, but put a towel over my tum and womanned up and er… it was ok.


I was under a hot blanket for the next day and morning to keep the blood vessels dilated  to help them mesh.I did find that hard, because I’d come off HRT and was getting very hot hot flushes but had a spannish type fan and evian water spray which helped. That sound so picky and ungrateful, I know.

I was up and walking midday Friday, and each hour felt better, I did my ankle leg exercises and breathing and arm exercises. I did increasing reps of walking along the ward and standing a bit straighter and bit quicker each time. The whole staff were wonderful beyond description ( Bradford Royal Infirmary).


I took piles and piles of clothes, but in fact had hospital gowns on till I came out becuase I was still a bit hot and could take them off when in bed, with BJ knickers, soft crop top and M&S thin strap vests which togehter gave good support  and could be lifted for exams.

Do take drain bags, 25 x25 cm with over the shoulder strap, then you can crisscross  put under your gown or down your bottoms and you’ll be able to use the loo easily and generally  get about.

Yesterday I had a mini shower and after a rest a short walk, and  a bit longer walk today.

I’m nowhere near as fragile as I expected, I am being lokked after by my best chap and have  done nothing other than get up, swallow meds, watch the TV, read, exercises, rest, little walk, rest…

I did feel pretty awful the 2 days after but that was not pain but being hot, monitored every hour,  and I was a bit odd after the anaesthetic. 


I know I have a distance to go, but I think I’ve made the right decision, not oit of the woods.

Hope this helps and very happy to give any other information that I can, Caroluna

Hi Kaya51
I wore pj’s all the time apart from the first couple of days in a hospital gown. Didn’t have any problems with stomach as the trousers can be pulled above or left below. Tbh I didn’t wear front opening tops either. We were supple with drain bags and found it easier to hang them round your neck when going for a walk or going to loo etc and then you have hands free ?