Getting in a tizz!

I am about to undergo lumpectomy and sentinel node biopsy. I am getting stressed about the small things such as having a shower, washing my hair, using deodorant etc. 
I am sure you lovely ladies have a wealth of advice

Tizz thee not! It will be fine. Is it before the op, or after the op which is bothering you? 

Hi yolande

I was given a waterproof dressing after I went back to have my drain removed (I don’t think you will need a drain with your type of surgery but it’s worth checking because it was a bit of a shock to me lol) but I did have to ask. If you have sensitive skin, don’t bother - just live with sticking your bum and legs under the shower or have a bath. I had the most appalling allergic reaction.

The best deodorant/antiperspirant I have found is a crystal. I still use it. You can buy them at places like Holland & Barrett and they last a lifetime. You just dampen the end with water, rub it over the required area and wait for it to dry. I’ve no idea how but it works and there are no risks. In the long term, you will be able to shave using an electric razor lightly but a lot will depend on your biopsy results. If you require further surgery, the map of your armpit will change and hair growth changes too. I haven’t actually bothered shaving since I had full axillary clearance because, after chemo, little hair has grown back under my arms.  I didn’t perspire, let alone sweat for about a year either. One perk?

Make sure you have plenty of loose, front opening tops and pjs for the coming weeks and do your exercises no matter how sore you are! You really have to keep those breast muscles and your underarm mobile. 

I wish you all the best for the surgery and hope your results are reassuring x

Hi Yolande,

I had the same surgery July 22nd and I agree with all the advice given already. I used wipes for the first 3 days but not on the affected armpit as the dressing was already coming off. The dressing on my breast stayed put for 8 days no problem. I had a shower on day 3 and removed the armpit dressing and put another one on. Then I showered/ washed hair every other day with wipes on the other day. The armpit dressing came off again so I put a plaster over it instead. The nurse took all dressings off this Friday (so after 9 days) and everything looked good. I haven’t used deodorant in that armpit yet but might try the crystal one suggested here.

Totally agree with pjs with front fastening. I got front fastening bras too which were good to begin especially at night with but found they cut up into my armpit and caused a bit of swelling so switched to a vest that has one of those shelf bras in it.

Best of luck with your surgery. Take care,

Jo xx