Can anyone help with what to expect?
I had a 5cm lump which is currently being shrunk through chemo
Next up is a lumpectomy - been told approx 4 weeks after chemo then a 4 week recovery before radio
What is a lumpectomy ?
Is it like a biopsy?
What’s the recovery time?
Thanks in advance x

Original tests showed no lymph nodes affected
I presume that after 8 sessions of chemo it’s unlikely to have spread

Hiya, I had lumpectomy (or wide local excision) and left scar line. I had pain killers for about 4 days, v. similar for me in terms of recovery after biopsy, sore but manageable. Husband expected me to be worse! I took about 10 days off work, but could have gone back sooner, but work long hours in sales so wanted to feel really good before returning! Day op too for me. Good luck for it x

I had a lumpectomy one week ago. My tumour was 10-12mm so quite small.It was my first experience of a general anaesthetic and everything was fine apart from low blood pressure on recovery 90 over 60 which came back to normal by the time I was discharged the next day. I took pain killers for five days - not that I needed them but I was being ultra cautious. As a result of the medication I experienced constipation a fact of which I had been unaware. However it soon passed! My main problem is that since my diagnosis three weeks ago I have only been able to sleep two to three hours a night. I have been told by my cancer nurse that this is normal in such a stressful situation and she recommended going for walks. So today my husband and I went for a five mile walk. Not bad for a 68 year old one week after surgery.If rsdiotherapy is as positive an experience as a lumpectomy it should prove to be an interesting experience.All a lumpectomy involves is removing the tumour leaving a clear margin around it. A biopsy is done on the tumour with results two weeks later. I hope all goes well with you

Thanks for the info and experience sharing
So it’s a toss up between a local and General anaesthetic ? Depending on your individual treatment plan
I’m hoping for a local , I can barely feel the lump now so chemo must be working x

Hi, was diagnosed with lobular breast cancer 3.3 cm in May 2015, but due to having total hysterectomy 3 weeks prior was put on letrozole for 3 months to await healing from my surgery.  I returned to breast clinic on 18th August, and on having breast examination by consultant, was asked to go for a ultra sound scan - already had biopsy etc initially, I was told that it had reduced by a third, due to letrozole.  The surgeon has suggested I remain on letrozole for a further 3 months, to reduce it further.  I am 66years old and absolutely petrified! I asked the surgeon if a lumpectomy was possible and she is reviewing me in November, there are 2 nodes involved and I am diagnosed as Grade 1.  - my question is, what is the lumpectomy surgery like? I contracted pneumonia after the hysterectomy and was very ill.  Now I am petrified (to put it mildly) of another impending surgery.  I have two wonderful supportive daughters, but still scared.  Thanks to you all x

Hi1981mum - how are you doing? When is your surgery date? I have a 3.5cm breast limp that has been shrinking with letrozole it has shrunk by a third- I am extremely anxious about surgery as I am older at 66yrs - think it’s the waiting and not knowing what to expect - although people do say it’s very doable. Hope everything works out well for you. …love to you Pauline xx

Hi jojo how are you doing? Are you managing ok - I have been thinking of you, hope you are ok - please let me know. Thanks for letting me know about the lumpectomy - I am still very anxious ( been in letrozole for 5 months now) hopefully to shrink it - it had shrunk by a third in August, have another appointment in November , so it’s the waiting, and the anxiety before surgery, everyone says it’s very doable but still scared. Let me know how you are… We might even live near each other? That would be good…love Pauline xxx

Hi Jojo, I live in Oldham! Where a outs did you use to live? Which school? I am sorry about the delay in your radiation treatment, and that your feeling sad. I wish I could help. I too am really anxious regarding my surgery (no date yet) I have an appointment on Monday with my oncologist and for an ultra sound to see if further shrinkage - I am also anxious about ALND surgery, don’t want to get Lymphodemia - I am really anxious. I went out Christmas shopping yesterday and ended up sitting in a cafe with a hot chocolate, couldn’t face it! I wish this was all over (for both of us) I was not even remotely this anxious prior to my hysterectomy, so, even though my daughter keeps telling me it will be fine, I am still extremley anxious about thus operation. I had my grandson from nursery at 12 yesterday, then went to my mums (she’s 90) and made her tea, got home at 7pm - so today, daytime telly only! I hope you are feeling a little better today …Love Pauline x

Hi Nadine, thank you so much for your reply! I am just wanting reassurance that I can cope. I spoke to my oncologist last Monday and she just said, you do know that we are removing your nodes don’t you? I just nodded…how many should have been my question, but I have an appointment with a surgical nurse next week so will ask then. I know when they did my underarm needle aspiration they said that two were involved, but will they take them all? That is what is scaring me the most (well that and the op) she said as far as the breast surgery was concerned it will be a 5cm sphere? It is 27mm at the moment, is a sphere a circle? It seems a lot to me, but she said she wants to make sure the margins are clear. I am trying not to ‘Google’ anything - that can be really scary, and I am that already! I am going to ask more questions next week - the ones I should have asked my oncologist, but she kept holding my hand and I ended up in floods of tears! Don’t ask me why, kept thinking she was going to hand me some really bad news! Anyway, so glad you posted on here, happy your doing great and keep in touch…Pauline x

Hi Pauline & all
I’m new to the forum & to this awful emotional roller coaster we are on. Lumpectomy 3 weeks ago healed fast, then axillary clearance 4 days ago. Neither op was as bad as I feared- only took paracetamol for the first 2 days for each (& no, I’m not being brave, it’s just OK). Drain out tomorrow hopefully, currently in pocket, but not too much of an inconvenience! Shoulder a bit stiff, & occasional shooting pains & numbness, but again, can deal with it. Trying to do something good each day to stay positive between the tearful & angry days… Not sure whether chemo or radiotherapy is next, so ordering Xmas groceries today…might not be up to it in a few weeks, & don’t feel brave enough to cancel Xmas completely.
I too was terrified of having the lymph nodes removed, but so far - & I know it’s early days - so good. I really hope things go as well for you, take care, Jan

Hi Jan, thanks for that. I’m not in the least bit brave at all, my surgery is January 13th and I am already having nightmares! My oncologist always puts on the end of her letters - please do not be alarmed! She has me worked out! I’m afraid after my initial diagnosis I did what I was told not too - googled - my goodness what scary stories - but thanks to people like you I am calming down - a bit. I am scared of lymphodemia if they take them all, also I take care of my mum who is 91yrs old now…I can’t even think of Christmas …it just brings it nearer. I did ask for a pre med, but because it’s done as day surgery she said it wasn’t available. There must be something I can take? Perhaps when the day comes I will feel calm-although at the moment I doubt it. Thanks for your post, like you said, emotional rollercoaster, it’s awful, draining. My son asked me out yesterday, couldn’t even be bothered to go out. I said, thanks perhaps next week! Glad you are recovering well, please keep in touch…love Pauline x

I sadly can’t help much with your medical questions, as these are best answered professionally and for your care. I would recommend you carry a wee notebook to write any questions and fears that come to you and when you next see your oncologist just read straight from the book. Take moments when needed and if you find her holding your hand is distracting(makes you more emotional) just ask her to wait until all has been asked then comfort will help. My bcn described the lumpectomy perfectly to me…she said it’s like a cherry, the lump is the stone and the healthy margin is the fruit. I kept that image with me the whole time.
You will surprise yourself on the day, stay away from Google, immerse yourself in chores and family. Xx

Thanks for that, I must admit that the waiting is getting to me. I am trying to keep busy but sometimes my heart is not in it. I seem to get better as the day goes on- how are you doing? I am going to my mums today so we can have a chat - she likes to reminisce - then I have got my son coming later. I have good days and bad days - which is normal I suppose - thanks for posting on here - it does help me …Pauline x

Hi thanks for replying, I had a hysterectomy in May due to a twisted torsion so do know what it’s like being in hospital for 5 weeks after contracting pneumonia - but I was no were near as scared as this! My oncologist has said this is a minor op in comparison - but I am really scared of this op much more than I was when having the hysterectomy - no clue as to why? You have had all those operations my goodness - I hope you are okay - your right about getting over it - although I have a scar from my hysterectomy I have forgotten all about it - hope I do the same eventually with this - thanks …Pauline

Hi Jan, I know what you mean about Christmas, just want to hibernate, actually think I am! My son took me to the pictures to watch the new bond film, I actually enjoyed it, which was a surprise. I keep saying it’s not the lumpectomy (really) it’s more the lymph node surgery that I am frightened off and the drains and the pain and…everything - keep imagining myself walking down to surgery, but can’t! I know I will have to, but still wish that someone could sedate me at home and I will wake up and it’s over. My daughter says she’s going to stay with me until it’s time …I know when I had my pre med for my hysterectomy I didn’t care where they were taking me, but no such luck this time. I am hoping a calmness like you said will descend on me on the day, my daughter said she will stay with me until it’s time - think it’s more to make sure I go! I really don’t know why I am like this, but one bc nurse said that sometimes it’s the Letrozole that can cause depression and mood swings, just keeps getting better. Hope you are ok. Love Pauline x

Hi jojo, thanks for your suggestions, my dr gave me Valium 2mg as and when required - I took one on Monday before my consultation but it made me tired, perhaps because I’m not use to them. I am seeing a surgical nurse on Monday to ask some of my questions, so hoping she will reassure me - I suppose when this op is over, I will have something else to worry about, I am glad that your treatment is almost over, hope your resting, thanks for all your help and tips, means a lot to me, thinking of you too. Pauline x

Hi Nicki, thanks for that. Sorry about your experience - hope you feel better now. I am not looking forward to Christmas, but I am looking forward to a planned holiday next year, time goes so quickly so here’s hoping it does. I think you are doing incredibly well, my hospital is really supportive of us all and they have said I will be fine, they will look after me. My daughter works ion a hospital (maternity) and she said that one of the ward clerks there, her 86yr old mother in law had a Masectomy and was home 23hrs later and was fine, so if she can cope…thanks for posting, take good care. Pauline x

Hi everyone, how are you all doing? How are you Jan? Not heard anything lately, so hope you are doing ok. I have had a stomach bug do not been on here for a few days…still thinking of you all though …keep in touch Pauline

Hi Jan, thanks for that, I am so scared of the auxillary node op/lumpectomy but you are making me feel more at ease, I do think it’s the waiting, it’s dreadful! I know that the Letrozole has given me the choice of surgeries. My daughter keeps telling me I will be fine, just wish I had her confidence. Hopefully when this is over I can carry on, just keep thinking I won’t cope, but it’s definitely the waiting…love Pauline