Preparation for chest wall radiotherapy after left mastectomy

Hi all,

Does anyone know if there’s a checklist/guidance on what to do in preparation for chest wall radiotherapy?

I’d like to hear from fellow BC’ers who have had chest wall radiotherapy after a mastectomy to get insight into what to expect, and what you did to prepare, and also what if anything else you wish you had done in hindsight? Also appreciate any tips/advice you have to minimise side-effects: skin, fatigue, instructions on DIBH breathing technique & anything else (including for those with naturally sensitive skin). 

Your first hand experience, insight & tips would be much appreciated. 


Hi, I’ve just finished 3 weeks of radio to the left hand side. I’d say it wasn’t as bad as I was expecting. The breathing pattern for me was a shallow breath, followed by a deep breath hold for a count of 20, up to about 8 times depending on how many shots (that’s not the right word, but you know what I mean) you’re getting.

If your fitness is ok, then you’ll probably find the breathing ok, but it might help if you can some breathing exercises beforehand just to get used to it. I did occasionally get a feeling of “I’m going to burst, I can’t do this” but using mindfulness techniques and thinking calming thoughts helped me push on through!

I also moisturised twice a day using Aveeno and/or MooGoo Udder Cream, and my skin is red and a tiny bit sore but ok.

The radiographers were really nice and friendly, and did loads to put me at ease, and said if you have to breathe you obviously can, they just start again!

Good luck :heart:

Thanks @FayeL for the tips. I’ll have to practice the breathing exercises to see how I get on.


I start tomorrow I have ten sessions and a boost. I’ve been told to moisturise the area lots and wash with warm not hot water 

Welcome to the forum HillA and best of luck with your treatment x

Hi, Just keep moisturising. My oncologist also prescribed MediHoney to put on my skin if it was red or even felt burnt. You can also buy it from Amazon. It worked really well for me. I was really tired all through radiotheraphy