Double mx with latissimus dorsi reconstruction

Hi everyone,


I was diagnosed last week (HER2 and estrogen +ve, 25mm tumour and at least one lymph node affected) and am being rushed in for a double mastectomy with LD reconstruction next week, with chemo, radio and Herceptin to follow. Has anyone had a bilateral with this type of recon in the same operation? I’m really worried about loss of strength and mobility and can’t find anyone who has had the same thing done.


I’m 34 and used to being very independent. I need to recover asap as I have to work as much as possible thoughout all my treatments as I don’t get any sick pay through work, just the statutory. I don’t qualify for any welfare benefits as my husband has no recourse to public funds (he’s American and I sponsor his visa, so I can’t lose my bloody job either!), this has been confirmed by Macmillan’s welfare advisors and the CAB (basically we count as needing a single persons income but anything he does earn is counted against this). No family support since my mother passed away as a result of bc last year. My best friend has stage 4 bc with brain, bone and liver mets after a very late diagnosis this June. Husband struggles with depression so I’ve signposted him to carer’s support groups and counselling etc. I’m used to being the strong one!!!


Not got as far as thinking about what will happen to me after the op yet as things have moved so fast, but can anyone tell me what their experience was?


Thanks for your help.



Hi fearn

I am sorry to read of your recent diagnosis and all the diffiulties you are experiencing.  Whilst you are waiting for the other users to reply with their knowledge you might find it helpful to contact the BCC helpline on

0808 800 6000.  Here you can share your thoughts and concerns with someone who will offer you a listening ear as well as emotional support and practical information.  Lines are open weekdays 9 to 5pm and Saturday 10 to 2pm.

Best wishes Sam, BCC Facilitator

Just giving my thread a little bump as it would be lovely to hear from someone. hx

Thank you so much for your reply Bumpkin, my op is tomorrow so I was getting quite anxious. I only have help at home for 2 days after I get out of hospital as my husband can’t take any more time off work, so it’s good to be prepared for how bad I might still feel. My employer is expecting me back after 3 weeks as that was what my breast care nurse said!

Hi Fearn… how did it go? 6 months on now so I would love to hear how you got on as I am facing the same op

My surgeon is saying he does not advise double reconstruction at same tome as bi mast, poss too much… but I want it all done at once if poss (i’ve seen info on delayed reco and the stretch process/filling temp implants up each month to stretch skin, then having the recon just looks like extending the pain and discomfort.
Did you have all in one go?
How long were you incapacitated? (I would have thought 2 months off work more realistic?)
I am single parent/single income and self employed. I am an agent for a software company and work on commission basis.
So I really need to keep downtime to a minimum.
My ‘boss’ is wonderful and list his mum to BC 2 years ago, and his sister/sis in law/colleague and friend have all had BC in past 3 years, so he is really sympathetic, but he is not a charity.

It has come so out of the blue, i am having chemo first though for 5 mths, so need to work during that as much as able to drive some sales to cushion my time off.
(That’s why I want Mistletoe extract so bad… takes the edge off chemo side effects, improves quality of life)

I am living each day as it comes, know I am 5 mths away from Mastectomy, but it would be great to understand the reality so I can plan better.

Hope you are all out the other side now and the memories are fading! Appreciate any advice!
I have a very high pain threshold, and have always worked through any illness, but this one I have to admit is scaring me.
Not sure my ‘indomitable spirit’ is going to work this time!

Oh Fearn you are an Angel! This is invaluable info! Some things I sincerely doubt you can get anywhere but from someone that has gone tbrough it themselves. Some great little tips as well as some really important advice.
It is so encouraging to here you feeling so much improved 6 months on.
Time flies these days… I’m hoping the next 12 mths goes as fast as the last so I can be up and out with my new boobs!

Is the lymphoedema on the side where they removed all nodes? That bothers me. Did they find camcer in your sentinel node?
Just wonder what choice you have re a isl clearance (without risking future health)

Sounds like I need to do some sit ups and exercises before the op! Horribly unfit.

Thank you SO much for taking the time to write.

Am I allowed to say what a piece if poop your ex sounds? Well rid. I have a similarly self centred ex…
I am lucky to have a sister who can move in to help. Plus another who has offered to clean.
Friends have offered to batch cook meals for me and my son, and walk the dog.
3 brothers on hand to do garden and my ‘to do’ list to get my house ready possibly to sell. (May downsize, reduce atress of big mortgage. This has been a wake-up call for me, and I need to spend less time working and more time having fun with my son!)

What fabulous invaluable info Fearn! Thank you so much for posting i will be having my bilateral in September after chemo all being well and will use your post to help prepare. And on the ex front I know it’s hard but hey how proud you should be doing this by yourself and getting through! xx

Ah that’s a shame. I promote the group whenever I can as it’s been a real help to me. I’m 34, there aren’t many younger women around going through this so it’s been really useful. There will be other support groups that have a more inclusive age range, I’m sure :slight_smile: xxx