Feeling let down

Hi just had to let it all out. Having had right mastectomy and immediate recon with becker implant to expand skin end Nov 06, I was orginally told, I would have the contoured implant put in around March. This got put further back and I was put on the waiting list by my PS in June who said it would be done in the next 12 weeks.

I saw the Breastcancer Consultant three weeks ago for my six monthly check who told me that I had been waiting far too long and it was time the exchange took place, she took charge of this and got me a date for the 7th August. I was delighted that somebody had actually taken on board how uncomfortable this is for me as the skin is very stretched and pushing way upwards (probably the fact that she is a woman, where the PS team are all men).

Anyway I have been on cloud nine (how sad am I) for the last two weeks to think that finally I might be getting my body back to somewhere near normal. I went for my pre-op assessment yesterday, all ok, and have started getting everything together for next week, and then this morning out of the blue the phone rings, and yes youve guessed it the op has had to be cancelled, and another date given of the 21st.

I know I am one of the lucky ones as I was diagnosed with DCIS and advised to have mastectomy and results showed no invasion so I didn’t have to have any further treatments and I do thank my lucky stars regularly. But I feel like I have been hit with a sledge hammer, I coped with the first news and the mastectomy and the discomfort but I just feel that I have been left hanging in mid air and have done nothing but cry and feel sorry for myself all day.

Hi Lilymay, like you I had a mastectomy last October (2006) and had an expander in. I last saw my consultant in April and was told I needed the implant putting in, but there was no theatre space til June, and that date was bad for me so I was given 7th August.
Last weekend I went to my neices wedding, it was lovely, the reception was in a marquee in a field, but the next day I was covered in insect bites (well 13 actually) and they swelled up and several went into big blisters. The doctor put me on anti biotics, but I phoned the hospital to check if it was ok to take them so close to my op and they promptly cancelled it! me and my big mouth, I should have kept quiet.
So now I have a new date of 29th August.
The really annoying thing is that they phoned me 2 days before the wedding and said they had a cancellation the following day. I could have gone in and had it done, …but the hotel was booked and I had agreed to take my elderly parents, and I was also taking my Mum to hospital for an op a few days after so I turned it down.
Keep in touch, let me know how you get on on 21st, you are still before me.

i have had imediate breast reconstruction,after a mastectomy in june.my problem is i have fluid in my back which is being drained frequently.give that i seem to be one of the lucky ones,needing no further treatment has anyone any advise

Hi Lilymay,
As you say, we were both lucky to have this thing detected early, and not to need any radio or chemo. My expander is not too uncomfortable really, I have got used to it It is very solid and if I lie on it in bed it feels as if I am lying on a hard ball. It points to my left, but I am hoping they can sort that out.
I keep taking vitamin C tablets hoping they will help me avoid catching a cold or anything, and I am trying to avoid getting any more insect bites. With any luck I will get it done on 29th.
My Mum had her knee replacement op last Tues. I am on visiting duty today, taking my 89yr old Dad to see her. She is doing very well, but she is a bit bad tempered as she wants to go home.

It’s not surprising you are feeling fed up having to wait again, but perhaps someone else was newly diagnosed and needed an op urgently. You never know, they might get a cancellation for reasons like mine, and they might phone you up like they did me last week and offer you a date at short notice. Keep your bag packed and ready just in case.

Fingers crossed, best wishes

Hi Lorraine, it’s me again. I am 54 oops, wrong (I’ve had another birthday) 55yrs, and have one daughter 27yrs who needs a lot of emotional support for various reasons. No Grand children, and I know she doesn’t intend to have any.
My parents are both 89yrs and getting more dependant all the time, although I have a brother and sister to share the load. My husband David is very supportive. Most of the time I cope ok with the demands of my family, but when I found out I needed a mastectomy it all became a bit too much. I took my friend’s advice at put myself first for a while. I actually didn’t mind being in hospital and having everything done for me for a few days.
I’m glad you are feeling a bit more positive. If you are like me you will have lot’s of ups and downs.
Have you been told whether we will need to go through all those arm exercises again? I forgot to ask.
Not long to wait now. Best wishes

Hello Heidicat glad its all over for you, Im sorry that I haven’t got back to you sooner, but Ive been back into hospital and am only out today and have to go back in tonight. I had my drain out last Monday and they discharged me and on Tuesday when I showered I noticed the drain site looked a bit angry, I put another dressing on and decided to wait and see, Wednesday I didn’t feel well and ended up with a temperature, I saw the nurse at our Health Clinic and she prescribed me antibiotics. I was seeing the plastics team on Thursday morning for a wound check, when I got down there they decided I had to be readmitted under observation. The infection has spread into the implant area and it has been very red and swollen, (bigger than the becker at its biggest). They are going to give me two to three weeks on antibiotics to see if it clears, but if this doesn’t work, they think it will have to come out and then I will have to be vacumm packed for three months to clear everything and then they would try again…

I hope it doesn’t come to that, there is a girl in my ward going through that procedure at the moment, she had a recon from her stomach which has gone wrong, and its not very pleasant.

Anyway fingers crossed that I wont have to go down that road. I should hopefully be out again in the next day or two, as I am feeling a lot better and the redness has gone down, and Im sure that the swelling is a bit less.

I hope your pleased with yours, get plenty of rest and keep in touch