radiotherapy after reconstruction

Hi everyone, i have to have a 5week course of rads, dont have any dates yet! I had breast cancer 6 years ago and had a mastectomy followed by chemo, i was on tamoxifen for 5 years. i went for an appointment with my breast cares nurse and was told i could stop taking tamoxifen and mamograms every 5 years. just what i had been waiting for “the all clear” but it was not to be 15mins and 2 mamograms later i found out i had bc again! just had a mastectomy in dec and im having a reconstruction. (got 2 implants in and have to go every 2weeks to have fluid injected in to stretch skin)I need to have 5 week course of rads but have no dates yet. I coped with chemo last time not sure what side effects you get from rads but i will fight this all the way and am determined to get that all clear that i have been waiting for :slight_smile:

Not sure you ever get the all clear sue, I first had bc back in 1985 and went for 20 years with no problems, the furthest thing from my mind was it coming back but it did in 2005 had mastectomy with reconstruction and hoped that was it, but it was not to be, I had a recurrence last August on the other side so have had rads again and am taking letrozole.

All we can do is take it one step at a time and deal with things as they happen.

Good luck with your treament.

Take care

Jan

Hi,
What a shock that must have been!
I have had rads after a reconstruction.I was very alarmed when I was told as I was a year post op with a new lump.(long story)
I was terrified my implant would suffer but so far everythings OK.I finished rads at the end of October.The Onc said that damage to implant is far less common these days.
As for the side effects,its like a strong sunburn.I had what they call a “bolus” which increases the skin dose and is often used in mastectomy patients.This did cause a bit more severe sunburn than others got but its all healed up and fading nicely.
Good luck
love
Dot
xxx

Hi,

I have heard that rads after an implant can ruin a reconstruction and am due to discuss rads the week after next (I am in the middle of chemo), so relieved to read your message. I had a mastectomy with immediate recon. I had no nodes involved and was hoping to avoid rads, but I have other risk factors that put me at a high risk of recurrence, so it looks as if I will be doing rads after all. The last time I spoke to the onc about my concerns he said that he knew woman who were very happy with their odd looking breast, which I didn’t find reassuring at all. Where did you have your rads done Dot?

Helen

Hi Helen - it’s true that some women are unhappy with their results and some are pleased and my surgeon finds some are unhappy when he’s pleased and some are happy when he is disapppointed! Some of it boils down to expectations and I think those differ depending on our marital status (sorry that sounds clumsy but whether we have partners, spouses, and children etc.) and some on our stage or life and whether we are young at heart and not young in body or vice versa. As the Monty Python team said |“we’re all individuals” and each one of us has her own needs, wants, expectations. It ainm’t easy that is definate. Some surgeons just won’t do reconstruction if they know you are to have rt and others are more relaxed about it and deal with the damage IF it arises and it doesn’t always areise from what I read on here. I suppose I would say if in doubt then speak to patients who have had implants damaged by rt and see what the remedy was, best of luck - Aged Person

Hi,

I had mastectomy in 2000 with immediate reconstruction with silicon implant. After my rads it had encapsulated and become very hard and the thin covering of skin and tissue became wrinkled and puckered. My plastics consultant tried again and put in a Becker implant which to be honest didn’t improve it much. My way of thinking was that there comes a point when you have to be satisfied with your lot and move on, no point striving for the unobtainable.
Hope things work out ok for you.
Take care
Kim xx