Hi Chic Chick
My LD flap was an immediate recon - I’ve posted this before, hope it helps.
I had MX to left breast and immediate LD flap +implant recon on the 26th Jan.
I didn’t have enough tummy fat to consider diep option. Even if I could have had the diep option, I’m not sure I would have taken it. It sounded like a massive op and my main hobby is horse riding, for which good tummy muscles and core strength are more important than arm and shoulder strength.
My plastic surgeon (who took over once the BC surgeon had done the MX and lymph node removal) has done a great job of matching my ‘new’ boob to the old one - even down to the right level of ‘droop’!
Had hardly any pain post surgery - didn’t need morphine pump. Had op late Fri, out of bed just standing on Sat and walking the corridor on Sun. A week in hosp - they didn’t let me go til all drains removed. Did get a seroma on back that needed draining a few times, but that resolved itself quite quickly. I was driving and back at work (part time for a couple of weeks at first) 6 weeks post op.
Six months post surgery and the new boob is really starting to feel like it belongs to me - obviously don’t have the level of feeling and it still feels a bit firmer and heavier than the other one, but improving all the time. The PS warned that it does take a long time to completely settle down. It’s a bit bigger than the other one and a bit perkier (they are now nicknamed Pinky and Perky) than the other, but all of this is totally unnoticeable in bra and clothes - as is the slight bulkiness under my arm where the muscle was put through. That felt enormous for weeks, but again is starting to feel more natural and is unnoticeable to everyone else.
My scars around where the nipple was and on back are improving all the time (I do use Bio Oil). I can see that the nipple area scar will be difficult to spot in a year or two. The scar on my back is bigger and more ‘serious’, but still improving and is covered by my bra strap.
My shoulder and under my arm still feel a bit stiff and tight, but I have virtually full range of movement and am back gardening and horse riding. Chemo does make the recon feel worse at times, but this is temporary.
I am having rads. This was a calculated risk I took.
The implant won’t affect the effectiveness of the rads, but it is likely that the rads will affect the implant - my plastic surgeon said that even if get capsulation round the implant and, worse case, down the line I need the capsulation removed and a new implant, the final cosmetic result will still be better than a delayed recon.
If I am going to get capsular contraction it won’t start to show for a while - my PS said it can take up to a few years before it gets that bad that you need it removing and a new implant.
My recon boob is slightly bigger that the other, and I have a port in the implant where they can pump it up or let it down, so I’m hoping that if I only get minor shrinkage and contraction, they can let it down a bit and that will do the job.
I still don’t regret my decision to have an immediate recon. Various studies have shown that we can do better mentally and physically, and even if I do need to have another op, it’s a small one compared to a full delayed recon.
Hope this helps