risk reducing double mx and expander reon

Hi Ladies, I would love to here from ladies who have chosen to have risk reducing mx folllowed by recon, I have chosen to ,as i carry the brca2 gene mutation, and have an 80% chance of getting bc again,just like my mum did. As i had radio in September last year my surgen says he wants me to wait a few months for my affected breast to settle down, which is fine by me.He says i can have a double mx and immediate expanders or have the mx and wait a few months for things to settle then have recon, with implants, i dont want to wait as i remember my mum suffering really badly mentally, bless her, as she first had bc 30 years ago and wasnt offered recon. I would like to here from everyone , not just ladies who have chosen risk reducing surgery. Thank you to everyone.Sandrae x

Hi nanny

Just thought I would let you know a bit about my experience. I had mastectomy December 2009 following by lymph node removal and chemo which ended May last year. I was advised by consultant to wait until chemo finished and then I had to have a couple of meetings with the hospital and met women who had had different types of recon. I decided on the prophylactic mastectomy on right side (because I’ve already had bc twice) with ld flap and expanders in both with prosthesis (I think thats right :-), so confusing.

I go in for the operation on Tuesday and I’m very nervous but also excited because its been over a year wearing the prosthesis and its a pain to say the least for me.

Hope your doing okay

Krissi x

H Krissi thank you for your reply, sorry i havent been here for a while, i just wanted to say, thank you for your reply, and i hope your surgery goes well, please let me know how you got on. Take care, Thanks again Sandrae x

Hi Sandrae

Just thought I would let you know how I got on. I had my operation and everything is doing well. The scar where they took the muscle from is looking good. I’ve got a haematoma which I’ve been told is common and will go in time but apart from that I’m feeling good. The op lasted approx 3-4 hours and I was home 6 days later with all drains removed. I go to see consultant next week for check up and first injection of saline. I’ve got a permanent prosthesis in left breast where they did the ld flap and got an expander in right breast which I’ve been told may come out in the next few months and be replaced with permanent implant. I have to say the breast pain is minimal in comparison with the haematoma.

Hope your doing okay!

Take care

Krissy x

Hi Nanny - I’m in a similar-ish boat to you. I was diagnosed with DCIS and Paget’s disease in my left breast but all the scans etc showed the right breast was healthy. However, I was advised to have a double mascestomy as the chances of developing it again were very high and being ER and PR negative meant there were no other options to reduce that risk.

In terms of deciding on the risk reducing surgery, it wasn’t hard (and it looks like you have had a similar thought process) as I don’t want to spend the rest of my life waiting for it all to happen again. And in a weird way it opened up more reconstruction options to me as I didn’t have to think about getting the new breast to look like the existing one. So I also went for expanders - which were implanted at the same time as the masectomy. For me this was the right choice as whilst I’m perhaps compromising on comestic look and feel (against ld flap for example), I didn’t want to mess around with my body anymore than I needed to. However - another reason I felt this was right for me is that I don’t need radiation theraphy as this can affect the outcome, so just be sure you have all the information you need on this.

Also as I understand it, there are advantages from a surgical perspective to getting the recon done at the same time in terms of skin stretching etc so unless you have doubts or concerns about recon (and this is a very valid reason to delay it) then I would say do it at the same time - for me it all meant less surgery and waking up with something (albeit it rock hard boobs) was very reassuring.

The op was fine and recovery is slow but progressing well. I had my surgery on 8 Jan. I was able to drive short distances after 2-3 weeks and have been able to lie on my side for a bit for the past couple of weeks.

Not sure if I’ve answered your questions - but anyway, a brief overview of my experiences. Best of luck with everything :slight_smile:

Hi there,
I opted for bilateral risk reducing mastectomies with immediate recon with DIEP flap from my slightly saggy tummy. HUGE relief to think I have good chance of no more cancer. With making this choice its meant I haven’t needed rads. I’m 4 and a bit wks post op. Am amazed that despite a 12hr op, pain has been minimal and am thinking of cutting out the paracetemol soon. managed with paracetemol and ibuprofen once home and didn’t need morphine etc in hosp. Big improvement in tiredness in last couple of days.
Boobs are fabulous, feel just the same as old ones. Scars are minimal except for large tummy one, but am confident that that will fade nicely over this next few months
Had same thought process as you
Nicky x

Hi Ladies,
I am just starting out on this ‘journey’ as I have just been diagnosed as BRCA2 carrier.

Nicky, I am so pleased you are feeling well, this is the surgery I am contemplating. You have really put my mind at ease, at first I was all over the place not knowing which way to turn, but reading posts like yours have helped.
I am waiting to see Plastics so am going to go with open mind but I feel if this is offered this is the way I will go.

Great to read that everyone is doing so well.

Take Care

Brenda xx

Wow great thread. I’ve had masectomy on right side and couldnt have immediate recon due to nature and rads, waited until after chemo and ovaries out BRCA 1 then found so glad done ovaries, decided on 2nd masectomy, no brainer for me, even though I am terrified of surgery the paraniod bit gets to me. Been back and forward to Newcaslte and no plastic surgeons in my area, due to luymphodema in arm diep/tram best option and going for double recon. Been in hospital in last 4 months to have expander fitted and inflated to stretch the skin on masectomy side to get better result - even hated that and left me major lopsided due to posh spice boob one side and huge others - terrifed of op was in 5 days for expander due to drains not draining and living 3 hours away - looking at date of end April and pre-op 10th March>!?? Any advice welcome… x