Significant delay to start of chemotherapy

I had my mastectomy on New Year’s Eve 2013. No lymph node involvement so no radiotherapy recommended (lucky, as I have a pre-existing frozen shoulder so would have found it difficult!). Having had a different form of cancer previously (bowel cancer in 1996) I decided that I should have chemotherapy. However my mastectomy wound became infected and broke down and I eventually had to have a skin graft which is also taking time to heal. This obviously raises issues about whether to proceed with reconstruction later but my immediate concern is whether there is still any point in having chemotherapy more than three months after my surgery. I would be grateful to hear from anyone who has found themselves in a similar position.

Dear Fidant8

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Very best wishes


BCC Moderator

Hi Fidant8.


I had bilateral mastectomy with immediate reconstruction on 4th March 14. I have had numerous problems with wound healing (infection ect) and I am booked in for a skin graft on 15/4/14. Have been to see my onc today who says that starting chemo before wounds are completely healed, and having interruptions due to infection would be worse than just delaying treatment. I have another appointment on 19/5/15 and he says he MIGHT start chemo then if I am completely well. If not, he says that he will leave it another 4 weeks. When my chemo starts, it will be over three months since my op also.


I will definitely still have the chemo as it’s what they are advising. Have you spoken to your team? Maybe you could give your BCN a call or probably the helpline here could give you some support?


I hope this has helped a little.


Keep well :slight_smile:


Rach. xxxx



I was diagnosed 8th jan and had my first op on the 23rd of january.  I then had further surgery 6th March and had problems with a wound that has needed packing. I have been desperate to start and have been given the day of 17th april. I too have been really worried but my bcn also has stated the worst thing I could do is start chemo with an open wound. Actually she said it could be life threatening if it got infected!! The whole team are not worried about the wait and assure me the delay will not affect me.Speak to your team, but I would definitely go for it xxx