help need mastectomy after radiotherapy 4 years ago

I had DCIS 4 years ago started as a nipple pulling inwards. I had lumpectomy and WLE then 3 weeks radiotherapy. 2 years ago had a core biopsy because some changes but it was OK. On 4 year check was told mammogram OK, phoned 4 days later by consultant and told 2nd radiographer thought there were changes. Last week had another core biopsy and saw consultant today. He says I have DCIS again and need a mastectomy.

He needs to get some more results from the biopsy but says I need to think about reconstruction and go back and see him next week. The results from the biopsy will confirm that there is no invasive problem. I know that the DCIS is not life threatening. He say it is unlikely I will need chemotherapy but whilst they are doing the mastectomy they will check the lymph nodes for any disease.

I have been given the breast cancer care booklet on reconstruction and although the consultant said about an implant it seems to me that because I have had radiotherapy this is not an option for me. He did say I needed to speak to the plastic surgeon about options.

If I am going to have a reconstruction it seems better to have only one operation rather than two but the alternatives to the implant seem very major and I am scared and worried. Can anyone help?

Thanks in advance Cassie

Hi Cassie
Have just replied to your post on dcis thread…here its is …

So sorry to hear your news…i had a mastectomy and diep recon for dcis 10 weeks ago and have been amazed by the results…7 hour op but went without a hitch…back looking after my 2 young children by week 4!!!
You could look on which gives all the different type of recons available nationwide.
The diep uses skin and fat from tummy to rebuild boob…i had enough for a c/d cup…luckily no rads so had skin sparing mast…however if you have enough exccess tummy skin they can use that…and maybe reduce other side if that would help…
Are you memeber of…lots of us over there with lots of recon experience…
Good luck
Lots of love

Hi Cassie

Sorry to hear about your recurrence. Just a word…I live very happily with a mastectomy and no reconstruction…not having a reconstruction can be a positive option. I hope you get lots of replies from women who’'e had various types of reconstruction so you can make an informed decision if you want to go ahead.

best wishes


Hi Cassie
I posted you a short message on the DCIS section. Yes some of the ops are major ops I had a DIEP and it was 6 1/2 hours with the mastectomy but I can honestly say it was not as bad as I had feared. There was no pain it was more discomfort and most of that came from one drain in my tummy which was removed after 3 days. I now have a totally flat tummy as well as a new boob. I know that it is possible to have a DIEP after rads.It does take you a few weeks to be up and running about as normal but I felt that was worth it. I know some women are quite happy to live with just a mastectomy, I’m not one of them but you need to think about what you think would be best for you - not anyone else. A reconstruction can be done at any time but the best results are with an immediate one so you must take that into account.
I hope all goes well for you next week.