Hi New at this any advice appreciated 😊

Hi I’m Sam

I have read through quite a lot of posts. Brave, courageous, kindnes & support is what I feel & read from you all. I am hoping I will get some help with undestanding abbreviations & the medical ‘lingo’.

I was diagnosed late January, Grade 2 IDC, ER positive, PR positive & HER negative? I hope I have that as readable and my abbreviations are correct.

Good news they say, small, tiny, so I would not / can not feel it & has been caught early. My first screening.

I will be having a lumpectomy, plus lymph taken soon. Ultrasound did not pick up any signs of spreading to Lymph, but is being done as precautionary. Which I was told would therefore not need chemo.

I will then have 5 days of radiotherapy & hormone replacement therapy.

I am post menopause, 6 years post menopause. Have Osteoporosis & other very serious chronic medical issues.

So, would anyone have any thoughts as to which hormone therapy would be suggested, considering I already have Osteoporosis and I already take relevant medications for it. Also does this mean I have to go back and have the delights of menopause again? I managed to skim past it in my late 40s as I was seriously ill, prior to this recent BC diagnosis… I didn’t have time for it, let alone be aware of menopause.

I am on my own, it’s all getting a bit real as the surgery date is 2 weeks. Arghh. Worried that I will do something that might open the wounds up, by forgetting. Wortied about infection, bras, do you wear a bra straight after surgery - not a lot to put in one anyway. Lumpectomy is on the upper inner quad, so not same side as lymph wound.

Just worried. Trying to read the leaflets of do’s, don’ts, maybes.

TIA for anyone that stuck to my newbie post and didn’t fall asleep. :upside_down_face: :slightly_smiling_face:

Thank yous Sam


Happy Thursday Sammy,

Welcome to the forum the club, you probably didn’t want to join, however we are all here for you.

Reading your post, many of the ladies on this site we have gone through, just the same as you are about to take on board I had a lumpectomy and radiotherapy which was quite straightforward very small scar which healed very well quickly, As regards Radiotherapy , which can be a little bit uncomfortable at times, can make you feel quite tired afterwards. However, I think all very doable.

I completely understand how you’re feeling anxious. Don’t know whether you’re on your head or your heels at the moment which is quite understandable your breast cancer nurse will be there to support you, also should advise you on the help and support needed at home afterwards, also I would suggest a good supportive bra.

Wishing you well, going forward, please keep posting letting us know how you’re getting on.

With the biggest hugs Tili :pray::rainbow::pray::rainbow:


Hi @sammy8 just to say that your diagnosis of Er+ Pr+ HER2- IDC is the most common form of breast cancer and therefore has had loads of research done on it and your medical team will have been dealing with it day in and day out for years. I too had a small IDC of the same histology and had the lumpectomy and 5 days of radiotherapy and now take the tablets. I too live on my own and was 66/67 during active treatment. The surgery is usually done on an outpatient’s basis but obviously there will be a general anaesthetic involved so can you arrange for someone to pick you up afterwards? I know of women who weren’t able to arrange collection so stayed in hospital for the one night. Might be worth talking over the practical arrangements with the breast cancer nurse as soon as possible. I wore a bra all the time to start with including in bed, I felt that it was protecting the boob as it healed. You will be given exercises to do to keep your shoulder joint as supple as possible and help movement of your arm - these are important to do! After surgery and after rads, you will probably experience fatigue as your body repairs itself so cut yourself some slack and go with it in the first instance although gentle exercise like taking a walk will help the whole process. With regard to the tablets, they aren’t hormone replacement but oestrogen suppressant tablets. Your oncologist should have your medical history available and factor in your osteoporosis but I’d ask if it has been just to give yourself reassurance as there are two types of tablet, one would be better for you than the other. Interestingly, I had an easy menopause (I think!) and never really had night sweats etc and I haven’t had them on the hormone suppressant either so you never know, you may well escape them too :crossed_fingers:

It’s not easy going through this when you’re on your own so keep posting here and you can phone the Breast Cancer Now nurses on 0808 800 6000 who will answer any of your questions and give you the time to process the information. I guarantee you’ll feel better having spoken to them. Good luck with it all and let us know how it goes.


@sammy8 Hi :wave: the anticipation of having surgery is worse than the procedure itself. I had a masectomy last year May 2023. It was quite strange. Don’t worry about the dos and don’ts you can ask the breast care nurse beforehand. Go to M & S they do a fitting service or if you know your cup size get a bra that has no underwire. Wear it night and day and do your exercises, you will get a leaflet that shows you all the exercises to prevent a seroma developing. I wish you all the very best.


Hi Sam,
Sorry you have had to join this club but we are all in the same boat and ready to suport you whenever you need it.
My diagnosis was exactly the same as yours.
Reading the replies most of you questions have been answered what I would advise is to use a non wired front opening bra, I used one and it was a lot easier to put on and take off especially after surgery when you will feel a bit sore.
Hope everything goes well for you.
Take care


Hi Sam,
Welcome to the forum with lots of people able to share their own experiences. I just read through the replies and can second recommending an M&S front opening bra which I was told to wear day and night for at least 3 weeks post surgery, despite not being very large breasted.
I would advise arranging a bra fit for before your surgery and explaining to the assistant about your upcoming surgery. They will allow for the possibility of some swelling. I went before but wasn’t able to book a bra fit - just got a quick word of advice from one of the assistants and I bought 2 bras. When I went back for an official bra fit a week after surgery, the lady told me they don’t do fittings that close post surgery, but she was still very helpful and I returned one of the 2 first bras I’d picked up and chose another - a wireless padded back fastening bra esp for breast cancer operations which was less visible under the string vests I live in under open shirts in the summer, but the other one was more comfortable for sleeping in…
Make sure you choose one which is comfortable and gives sufficient support.
I have a second surgery next week, so will be back to wearing the front fastening one at night again.
I hope all goes well with the surgery - just follow the exercises and try to be mindful of how you use your arm post op (not to strain yourself)
Best wishes x


Thank you all SO MUCH for great advice, with experience.

I will have a lift to & from hospital & someone with me overnight. Then Im on my own with small dog.

I have read through the exercises, I understand the importance of them, but I will have to read what a seroma is.

I will have a look at M& S front fastening - bras, as I am a 36" A cup on the goid breast and B cup on BC side, (was measured properly) - however I’m not sure to go A or B as presumably there will be a dressing to wad out the cup? An acquaintance had no dressing at all, so I am requsting one as I bleed (not on warfarin, just other medical issues that make me bleed).

You are all so fantastic, thank you for all your sound and kind advice.

Good luck with surgery Mi-rie - Im already thinking how I will lock the doors as they are quite hefty.

Take good care all xx Sam


I’m triple neg, so don’t know masses about that hormone dependant cancers but a little bit about menopause and osteoporosis side of things.
I had HRT from perimenopause (now 60) and never had any symptoms. Diagnosed BC 3 months ago and had to stop my beloved HRT (even though triple neg, increased chance of a hormone driver BC recurrence).
Ive had hot flushes from a month after stopping, worse in the evenings, I bought a little USB charegeble fan from Amazon which is really helpful and switched to natural fibres, less polo neck synthetic jumpers, and it hasn’t been too bad.
Mood wise can’t really comment as have been emotionally shit since BC diagnosis. I’ve kept twice weekly vaginal oestrogen to stave of atrophic vaginitus as I’m not ready to give up my sex life !!! With the approval of my oncologist.
Osteoporosis wise I’m going to be having the bone strengthening infusions which reduce the chances of boney metastasis also. So sort of think that will replace the protection get would have given me.
I think they’re quite often required after BC, but not sure if it depends on hormone status etc.
Hope that helps a bit. The BC nurses on here might be able to tell you a bit more too xxx

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Seroma is a liquid filled area that forms where the lump was taken out. It is made up of some kind of liquid that can get infected so is sometimes drained out. It sometimes disappears without being drained so it won’t be removed if this happens. Cheers Seagulls


Thank you Seagulls, I am worried about what is normal to expect & what isn’t.

I understand some liquid may show or come out, that as long as it is clear that is normal.

Sleeping… another worry, looked into ‘how to sleep & which side’ one thread was 6 weeks lying on back, propped up with pillows? I’m hoping the wound will have nearly, if not totally healed by then :confused:?

Anyway thank you for explaining Seroma to me, I did have a Google, but got side tracked with post op bras! Im ot good with bras as it is, due to having not a lot to put in.

Thank you again :slightly_smiling_face:
Sam x

Hi :sparkles:

Thank you for replying I did write a thank youto everyone… but have come back to you also.

Was the bra zip or hook? I have nil points cup size, so will be an funky ‘A’ after surgery.

I hope you are well now.

Thank you for your advice :hugs:

Hi sammy8,

I had one zip front which was more of a sports bra for extra support and one that was hook fastenings.
I am an A cup but with broad shoulders so needed something stretchy, mine were from amazon as couldnt get to M&S for a proper fitting but they worked well enough for me.

Whether you get a fitting or just buy off the shelf you will need to make allowances for some swelling that may occur,having a tight fit is actually good for that apparently as it helps the lymph nodes drain( thats what my surgeon advised?) But too tight can become uncomfortable. :thinking:

Hope this helps and and hope you are as ok as you can be.
Take care​:heart::hugs:


Thank you :blush:

I’m the same re chest, but I hate anything really tight (a fitter said 34A but I struggle with it being so tight, I normally buy 36A, sorty to be a pain, could you tell me the brand if you have a moment). I’d really appreciate it. I feel like I’ve met a spaghetti junction with bras :smiling_face: I tried a few from Amazon, but the bust was miles too big.

Thank you :sparkles:

I propped my bosom up on pillows for ages. I was sleeping alone then, now I have a husband but sometimes abandon the marital bed and go in the spare room if I need some peace and quiet. I don’t think everyone has that luxury. In the old days I had my computer in the bedroom and if I felt bad I would ping off a message to the old breast cancer care forums. Luckily they moderated a few of my more gloomy messages.

I really believe you can foul up your life by anxiety and misery so whatever I feel I must keep laughing. I have a bra which you have to put over your head which is super soft padded and has no hooks or eyes. It’s comfortable so maybe look for that one. It makes my weedy bosom plus reconstructed diep breast look substantial…


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Thank you all this advice really helps.

My lumpectomy is on the inside - towards the breastbone side of boob, ‘UIQ’ “upper inner quadrant” I think is the correct abbreviation. :grin: I’m learning.

Completely agree positive mental attitude, I have had serious life threatening medical traumas, still ongoing, but I’m now in chronic not acute bracket for this. It is the unknown. I will post back after surgery & say what a plonker I was, worrying too much.

Thank you so much :heartbeat:
Sam :slightly_smiling_face::upside_down_face::slightly_smiling_face:

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Honestly none of us are plonkers. Who would choose to have breast cancer. Mine was outer quadrant. Inner quadrant can be more difficult to give a good cosmetic result or so I have been told. Things have progressed since I had my first surgery in 2003 but I was terrified as I was 36A. At least I thought I was. I only had a proper measurement after surgery and guess what? I was 34B the most common bra size…I went to Rigby and Pellar in London next to the Albert Hall and didn’t even have a bra on when the fitter looked at my malformed bosom. Eeek I learnt so much. They do charge a lot there for a bra but the service is impeccable. The Queen our dear departed Queen E used to go there.


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Thank you for your reply.

Unfortunately I can’t get to London or afford the fitting there. I’ll tie some handkerchiefs together & add some foam, do a little bow at the front, be fine.

I really do not care how it looks afterwards, as long as it goes, I’m happy with that, but really useful information about the inner quad, thank you. I can now try to work out how to sleep post op.

Kind regards

i did live in London at the time which helped. Sorry it’s out of your way. They didn’t charge for fitting and you didn’t have to buy anything. I think M &S do the same thing. I hope all goes well, it’s a bad card to get dealt but you seem to be a practical person. Keep in touch.


Hi @sammy8

Just for information I am wearing the M&S Body Soft Recovery Post Surgery Bra. It is front fastening, hook and eye and velcro, but I am just using the velcro. They do 3 colours, white, black and nude. I have got a second surgery coming up, so I will be wearing them for a while yet. They are currently VAT free too.

All the very best to you for your forthcoming operation.

Sending hugs to you xx



The sporty type bra was a syrokan brand, I am usually a 38A ,I ordered a 38B as my breast was slightly swollen, it was very tight around the ribs so at that time could have done with a 40B, but after the swelling went diwn it fitted fine.

The front fastening hook bra non padded,non wired was from the gemm range, had no problems with sizing it fitted well but I cannot remember what size I ordered as that was 2020 and it doesnt say on the label.

It really is a bit if a head mash trying to figure all this stuff out and it’s all trial and error most of the time.

All the best and take care xx

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