Lymphodema risk with reconstruction surgery

Hi everyone, I had mx and implant sept 14 followed by chemo, rads and several implant exchanges due to infection.

My implant is not great and as I’ve put on weight I’m very lopsided so am booked in for a DIEP at end of August.

Question that I didn’t think of asking my surgeon is whether this increases the risk of lymphodema either in arm or breast? I had full node clearance (26/27 affected).

Thank you x

Hi riversidedawn not sure I can help but will try. I already had lymphoedema before any of my reconstruction operations. I have had 5 surgeries as I had failed implant using back muscle. I had tram/diep in January. Initially after all the operations I noticed slight increased swelling which quickly resolved to what it usually is which is only slight swelling generally. The research says that the jury is still out as to whether it increases your risk but the ladies I have known or heard of have mostly developed lymphoedema not connected to reconstruction in fact they say the renewed blood supply and tissue can help with lymphatic drainage around that area. I wouldn’t let it affect your decision x

Thank you whitelily. I had mild lymphodema early on but when my surgeon exchanged my implant and flattened the muscle it seemed to improve the drainage and I don’t wear a sleeve now.

I have had my wedding ring resized twice this year (larger) and can only wear it on cooler days, sometimes there’s no way it will go on. Not sure if this is heat or lymphodema so will try to see the lymphodema nurse soon. X