Post reconstruction infection

Hi there. I had my expanders swapped for implants 5 weeks ago, last weekend of started to feel pain in my right hand breast (side that had radiotherapy), took a couple of nurofen and went to bed, however woke up in Agony at 5am the next day! I couldn’t lift my right arm, and my whole breast hurt. I felt very sick and had a high temp. I called out of hours Dr, who said I had a wound infection and prescribed flucloxicillin 7 day course. After a day, my whole boob and a small portion of the other one turned pink, was hot to touch and swollen! It took 4 x days of antibiotics to start to feel human again. I saw my Bcn and she seemed rather more interested in how I felt about my surgeon and my personal life than the actual infection! She also tried to fob me off with red breast syndrome (on googling, this seems to be a red breast no other symptoms…therefore not me!) anyhow, she gave me no other advice etc and shoved me out. Needless to say, I have half a days worth of antibiotics left to take, my right boob is very swollen, I’m still feeling marginally unwell (although better than I was), I’m a little concerned that as soon as I stop meds the infection is going to come back :frowning: I can’t talk to the dr or Bcn as they’re both horrible and I have a holiday in 3 weeks! What should I do? Btw I live in Milton Keynes and my Bcn is *** Should I just wait and let the infection get worse again? All taking time or take some actual action? I’m looking into making a complaint now. I was never going to complain, but I feel my last appointment has pushed me over the edge! They have no compassion at all, and they just don’t seem to care.

Hi Twoandabump

I’m so sorry to read you’re having such a diffiuclt time. May I suggest that you seek advice from your GP about the infection, they may be able to offer you a further course of antibiotics.  In the meantime you may also find it helpful to talk things through with a member of staff on the BCC helpline. Here you can share your thoughts and feelings with someone who will offer you a listening ear as well as emotional support and practical information.  The number is 0808 800 6000 and lines are open weekdays 9 to 5pm and Saturday 10 to 2pm.

Best wishes Sam, BCC Facilitator    

Thanks for the advice, I guess I’ll get more antibiotics from my gp, do you think just another 7 day course of flucloxicillin will be enough? Is there another antibiotic that could be considered stronger/better? I don’t want to be just keeping the infection back, only to find that just before our holiday I get really sick again. Honestly I’ve never felt so ill (not including chemo!) it really knocked me for six, I never take time off work either, but had three days off last week! X

Hi Twoandabump,

I’m sorry you are feeling so ill. I would ask whether you need IV antibiotics if your symptoms don’t improve and strongly encourage you to ring the Helpline. Please don’t be afraid to keep going back if you feel poorly. I had a similar experience. Hope you feel a bit better soon. Rattles

Twoandabump just come across your post , I had a2nd WlE on the 4th June , on the 23 rd June my boob felt sore to touch and I felt cold all the time made an appointment to see gp the next day but later that evening my boob was getting reder and very hot . Went to a&e got prescribed antibiotics for infection and told I needed to ring breast cancer nurse next day . When I rang she spoke to consultant who said needed to take antibiotic for next 7 days and made an appointment for me to be seen in clinic a week later . When I went to clinic I needed anouther course of antibiotics fluxacillin and was told my infection was cellulitis and I needed to be seen again in a weeks time . I went back today and they said infection was much better did not prescribe any more antibiotics as they felt I did not need any more but did say if have further problems to contact them straight away . You need to be seen as you will probably need more antibiotics I only started to improve after 2 nd lot of antibiotics . I hope you get this sorted take care x

Thanks for the replies, my breast is no longer pink, but is painful still (nothing like it was), but by the end of the day, I’m feeling pretty poorly still. My temp this evening was 17.9,?which for me is still pretty high (after chemo, I know exactly what my normal temp is, and it’s around 16.4, I’m always cold lol!) it is hugely swollen too. Although my Bcn seemed to think that it’s been like that since operation, I can assure you it was half the size right up until infection hit, if anything it’s bigger now than it was even after seeing her last Thursday, it’s still hot to touch too. I know it’s not right in my heart of hearts, but am too scared to say anything! I’m so fed up of not being taken seriously. I have an appointment on Thursday (my 6 week follow-up) I wasn’t going to go, as they just upset me when I’m there, but feel I need to be seen, as it’s my body, my holiday that will be ruined if they don’t sort stuff out. I’m going to take my partner with me this time, so hopefully I can have a normal appointment, instead of feeling like they don’t listen and fob me off. My Bcn gave no advice at last appointment, didn’t say what to do if it got worse and even questioned if I had had an infection in the first place! Strange how I started to feel better after a 4.5 day course of antibiotics, if this wasn’t an infection! I feel very let down by the two that deal with me :frowning: I have always raved on about the nhs, but now just feel let down by a few, it’s a shame, as I have written two letters to pals team about the fantastic care I have received, this time it shall be a letter of complaint :frowning: