DIEP Reconstruction

Hi all, I had a second case of breast cancer in same breast, first 2002, lumpectomy and radiotherapy and Tamoxifen for 5 years. Then different tumour, had R mastectomy in 2015, followed by FEC chemo Zoladex and Letrozole. Wanted L boob removed but surgeon said she would do at a later date if I was still sure. Fast forward to Monday 18thl when I underwent a L mastectomy and double DIEP reconstruction. R was complete reconstruction and left was a skin sparing reconstruction.
All ok, had scare as very breathless and ended up in hospital with suspected PE! Had scan and turns out have some water on both lung and a very small collapse of one lung, side effect of such a long time under anaesthesia, they think and will resolve. Anyone else had this problem? How long did it take to get better?
I am thrilled to bits with reconstruction on R but L, the skin sparing is huge! Very hard and much lower than the other!! Hoping it will settle? Anyone else had the same op? Abdominal wonderful!!! but no pain left side and terrible deep burning pain above right groin, on movement.
It’s so hot with bra and corset and the lovely white tight! Feel like a trussed up chicken in the oven!!
Thanks in anticipation, lots of love to all xxx

Dear Sue

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Hi Sue

i had a double mastectomy with skin sparing dieps and had a problem with one breast healing it all opened up at the mastectomy scar and I needed a debridement op after a few weeks which they left the breast open to see how much tissue would die off and need removing.  So I now have one breast larger than the other like yourself but I am now waiting for a further operation to have lipo to make the larger one smaller to match.

speaking to my consultant she says that the first op is a guide and evening up if needed will be done in the second op so I really wouldn’t worry.

also it takes time for Alt the swelling to go down and one breast may if swelled more than the other.


i can’t really help with the fluid on the lung question I did however have a chest infection and cough afterwards that took an age to clear, I would of thought because you are quite low after such a long op.


the stomach can take some time also to settle so it’s early days


hope this helps


SL x

Thank you so much for replying sisterlylove xx When did you have your ital op?
How long did it take for the problem with the wound break down? I’m just over 3 weeks post up now and wounds still looking ok.
I am in hospital at mo! Blue lighted in again, 40 temp, rigours etc, treated for sepsis, from infected lung, don’t do anything by halves!! Been here since Saturday, what a scary experience, worse than chemo!!! Feel so much better but not home till started on oral antibiotics. Will slow down recovery a bit but grateful caught in time.
Good to hear about second op to even out things and that abdo takes time, sometimes I think yes great other I think did I make the right choice! Hope it will all be worth it in the end! Thanks again xxx

Thank you Delly xx never seem to do anything the easy way! Thought once I came through operation then would be ok, sure didn’t envisage all these complications. Had my first wobble last night as they moved me from high monitoring to cubicle, which is a good thing but on my own, so was very teary till about 3am, feeling very sorry for myself! Blood tests later and hopefully home then.
Are you having expander in then implants? Thanks again , Love Sue xxx

Thanks again sisterlylove, must have been a hard few weeks for you xx Thanks for the reassurance, I think I’m concerned that they look so different at the mo and one is lower down on my chest than the other but they did a scan yesterday to check no infection in breasts and there are two seromas on the bigger one, no infection so left to resolve themselves. Very hard and lumpy which I know will soften with time. One question about the abdo, did you wear a corset or support pants for 6 weeks? Thanks Sue xxx

Hi ladies, I switched my failed implant for diep on 29th August last year, just come to my anniversary.

Sue, i had a bad cough after several nights in hospital. Trouble is with the diep wound you can’t cough to.clear your lungs properly. After aboit a week I had a CT scan as they were concerned about pneumonia. Luckily caught early enough and antibiotics cleared it up.

I wore support knickers for several.weeks after reading on here - no advice from hospital!

That CT scan went on to diagnose secondary bone mets - although for whatever reason was not brought to my onc’s attention until November!

That’s all under control and responding well to treatment. So I decided a bit more evening up.was required and last Friday went through lipofilling to plump up the diep breast and soften scar tissue where it has tethered down. Just a little op to squeeze a bit of fat under the skin I naively thought how wrong!!!
Recovery must’ve similar to.diep. the donor sites (hips and love handles) are a hideous shade of black and blue from just under my breasts down my full abdomen and round the back almost meeting in the middle, down my left leg looking like shorts and even. My pubs is swollen and purple! !!

This I did not expect. 8m guessing it’s because I didn’t have much fat sontjeuve had to dig around for it. We’re off to corfu next weekend I look like a battered 6 month pregnant wife - my husband us going to need protection on hols! !!

Oh Crikey Riverside dawn,


Awwwww, poor you. Well hope you have a great holiday. At least a suntan will disguise your bruises a bit!!! I hope.


Loadsa love to you and everyone xxxxxx