Driving after lumpectomy?

Saw some mention last night about someone not driving for a month after a mastectomy, and I’m just wondering what the situation is after a lumpectomy (which is what I’m hoping I’ll be having after chemo).

Also how is it for driving during rads?

I’ve got little local support and I’m a bit worried about how I’m going to get my youngest to nursery (and myself to rads).


Hi Mousy

Your surgeon will tell you when you can drive after your op, it depends on your arm movement etc. You should be able to drive during radiotherapy, but again it will depend on your arm post-surgery and range of movement. The radiotherapy should be able to give you a convenient time each day because of your childcare situation, so don’t worry about that.


Hello Mousy,

I had lumpectomy in Jan this year and surgeon told me not to drive for 2 weeks - felt I could drive before this but surgeon said it’s more to do with insurance, if you had a bump and it then came out you had just had an op! I drove myself to rads everyday for 5 weeks (2 hour round trip) with no problems apart from tiredness. I managed to get mid morning appointments so taking and picking up from school wasn’t a problem. Hope you go on ok.


I didn’t drive for 2 weeks after my WLE & AC. My arm movement was very restricted and I wouldn’t have felt safe.

When I had my mastectomy in March, I was told I shouldn’t drive until I was able to do an emergency stop. Your car insurance might not cover you if you are unfit to drive and have an accident. (I must admit I drove after about 3 weeks because I live on my own and had to get around somehow!) Everyone is different as to how quickly you feel up to it.

Hope all goes well for you!

Jacki xx

My surgeon said I could drive when I went for my post op appointment which was about 10 days after surgery. My op was on the right side so the seatbelt was less of a problem for me when driving than when I was a passenger. I am still on chemo so don’t know about radiotherapy yet but I hope I will be able to drive. I live in a tiny village with no public transport, so if I can’t drive I am virtually confined to the house!
All the best


Mine’s on the right too so that seems to be an advantage.

Bit of a relief about the rads. I can’t see OH getting that much time off work to be taking me every day. He’ll need to be saving that leave for stopping the kids from bouncing on me after the surgery. Will be hoping a lumpectomy is sufficient.

Luckily I’m walking distance from the school (though would have to be pushing a pushchair) but nursery is too far to walk.

Could be a bit of a disadvantage having to keep my youngest home just when I need to rest up just because I can’t get him there… (esp the extra lifting up to changing mat etc)


I drove about 10 days after my op (lumpectomy and lymph glands removal) and it was fine. It helps if it is on the right so you use your left for the gears. I have found over and over again that using my arm normally and sensibly has helped its recovery. For example, I was fine hoovering a day or two after the op, but have not progressed to mowing the lawn yet, a month after surgery. I don’t ever expect to be able to lift heavy things like suitcases with my right hand.

I find it helps to do the arm exercises 3-4 times a day (not 10 times as it says on the sheet), ansd to rest your arm by lying down or resting it on a cushion while seated eg at a computer. Other than that I use my arm normally.