Upcoming surgery

I’ve got my surgery coming up on the 30th of april. Its only 3 days away and every day I wake up more nervous. I’m so scared that im either not gonna wake up, or something is gonna go wrong, or theyre gonna realise its everywhere.
I’m keeping it together for the sake of my family but inside my brain is going 100 miles per hour.
Ive got a left mastectomy with DIEP reconstruction and a full lymph node removal. All the medical jargon is so stressful. Just when I think I feel ok, I get told about possible complications etc. And I know they have to tell you that because its their jobs, but its genuinely terrifying.
Anyway. Sorry for being negative. I really am trying. I just dont know who else to talk to.


It’s natural to be worried… on top of all stress running up to the surgery!!

I had a right side mastectomy and full node removal last Thursday and I broke down at the hospital, begging the anaesthetist not to kill me, crying with the nurses etc… - all normal and now 8 days later, I realised that you just need to let that fear out. The staff were excellent and are absolutely used to people feeling nervous/hysterical!

Once you’re awake after the procedure you will feel MUCH better - it’s done and that hurdle has been cleared. You then focus on the physical recovery (I’m doing well - out walking the dog every day with hubby/friends, went to watch my son at an athletics comp 2 days after surgery) and you can breathe for a bit and then gear up for the next hurdle.

Don’t feel bad for feeling bad - it’s part of the process. My bcn said to just accept you feel awful but remember it will pass.

You can do this and get through this - keep posting here, it’s a lifeline with others who truly understand xx


I am so sorry that you are feeling like this, I can hear the worry in your words.
What you’re describing though sounds completely normal. This may be the first time you have been in hospital or needed an operation, or even the twentieth but every time is just as worrying.
I have been a nurse for 40 years, gone into theatre a few times for work and personally and I felt all those things too BUT I constantly reminded myself that I was otherwise fit and healthy, had undergone a pre-assessment so the anaesthetic team knew my history and they wouldn’t be putting me to sleep if they had concerns, and for you, on the 31st April, your tumour will be gone and you can start to look forward.
Anaesthetists have gone through extensive training and really experienced, they monitor your heart and vital signs the whole time you’re asleep using machines and they have support of teams, medicines, equipment at their disposal-one of the safest places/people you can be with.
I know that even knowing that sometimes doesn’t help so try distraction, keep busy where you can (within reason) and keep reminding yourself that by Wednesday, the tumour will be gone.
I didn’t have DIEP but found my mastectomy one of the easiest parts of my treatment. I woke up fine, no sickness, no pain, off home same day-in shower next day, pegging out washing and doing things round the house next day and away for the weekend to visit family a week later. So, this horrible bit won’t last…
I still kissed/hugged my family before op like I may never see them again but they picked me up a few hours later, making me tea and fussing round so all that worry for nothing.
I don’t think we can remove that fear, just try to manage it.
Maybe tell your team so they can offer extra support, tell anaesthetist, give you something to relieve anxiety, review order of theatre list if able….
Big hugs for Tuesday.

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Hi @zaran
It is very natural for you and your friends and family to be worried, but you really are in the best place and they will take care of you.

I have just had a bilateral mastectomy and DIEP reconstruction on Monday. The planning was overwhelming at times as they have a duty of care to detail everything so you are made aware. I would be lying if I didn’t say I shed a few tears, but crying did help to tackle some of the anxiety head-on (maybe this is my way and not for everyone). My operation was long about 10 hours but they have lots of techniques they use to ensure you are safe, and except for the lack of sleep due to a variety of reasons the recovery so far being day 5 is going well and I have just been discharged from hospital

For the hospital I would get a few essentials long charging cable, wired earbuds, ear plugs and an eyemask, and cheap front fastening bras I got the Asda x2 pack of surgical bras and a high impact sportsbra to wear after the first few days when the swelling sets in. Also, comfy clothing with front fastenings.

Wishing you all the best and it’s ok to be scared but you are in safe hands and so far day 5 I can say the results look amazing from what I can see.


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Dear Zaran

We are all here for you, I can’t really add anymore to the wonderful replies that you have already had except I wish you health and happiness going forward one step at a time and you’ll make it we’ve all been in this boat, not knowing which way to turn.

Will be thinking of you on Monday. When you’re feeling up to it, please post and let us know how you’re doing.

Easy for me to say but try to rest if possible over the next day, or so.

With the biggest hug Tili :pray::rainbow::pray::rainbow:

I had my surgery over a week ago. I had a mastectomy with lymph node removal. I was also terrified and burst into tears in the way to the theatre room and whilst I was sitting in the room with the anaesthesist. I was terrified I wouldn’t wake up or would wake up mid way through the surgery. They do make sure you’re fully asleep. They have electrodes monitoring your brain to monitor this. After the surgery I felt better emotionally. Just the physical pain and restricted shoulder movement. I was coping ok with paracetamol but Friday i had to take codeine as pain got worse when drains were removed and the dressing was redone. It is getting better now though but pain is still there. Good luck x

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I totally understand this as prior to my surgery I was a wreck. I was crying when they wheeled me into the anaesthetist room however they gave me drugs to calm me down and within ten seconds of me saying “I don’t feel any better!@ I was out for the count.

People really don’t die anymore under anaesthesia. It is safer than drinking alcohol as you have someone monitoring you the whole time. If you are in any distress you are immediately sorted. It’s not my favourite thing in the world to have but it’s nowhere near as bad as expected. Have you had a bad experience with surgery before? I wonder if an old memory is replaying and hindering you here x

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Hi @zaran
Good luck. It’s all perfectly normal what you are going through … I too was scared I wasn’t going to wake up - the team in the hospital are amazing - they had me doing visualisation which was good and I used my yoga breathing. I am came through after mastectomy and Sentinel Node removal and have to say feel remarkably great - almost a bit of a fraud! Op was 10 days ago. Drain out dressing off and doing exercises. Waiting results which is the next hurdle. Be kind to yourself - this group is fabulous. Look forward to seeing you back on the forum next week and how you are doing. Best wishes x

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Dear Zaran,
I totally get where you are coming from and sending you all my love tonight ahead of your big day tomorrow.
I had a left side Mastectomy, sentinal node removal and tissue expander implant reconstruction 2 weeks ago on 15th April.
Like many who have commented before me I found the NHS staff from cleaners, to student nurses through to the anesthetist and surgeon could not have done more to put me at ease with their professionalism and kindness.
Everyone reacts differently to operations and they understand this.
I woke up post op feeling high as a kite , extremely talkative ( non stop actually for 15 hours !!) and so relieved the tumours were finally gone.
I’m not going to lie, my first week post op was really tough, reacting with the painkillers and coping with 2 drains in for 10 days, but much easier since they’ve been removed. I know the DIEP surgery is even more extensive, so don’t expect to be leaping around or going for nature walks anytime soon.
My advice is go easy on yourself, if you feel like a cry, then cry. If you’re scared , tell someone. It’s a huge thing happening to you, and there’s no right way to deal with it…but it does just get a little bit easier every day.
Also have lots of pillows…of every shape size , memory foam wedges, v pillows etc. My bedroom looked like the queen of sheeba’s boudoir for the first week!
I’m still very sore, but have been out for a walk in past couple of days and made dinner for 8 people yesterday, washed down with a couple of glasses of wine.
I could not have imagined that was possible a week ago.
Best of luck and do let us know how you feel on the other side. You’ve got this!


Wow!! What wonderful words from everyone!! Thank you all!! It all went well. In fact i woke up from my surgery and told them “Im ready to go down for surgery now” haha. It was a 9hr op. Im pretty sore and the day after surgery was AWFUL. I threw up everywhere and was so tired and groggy. But feels like a fog has been lifted now and im doing much better! One thing i know for sure is, i have ZERO idea why anyone would pay for a tummy tuck voluntarily haha. But much more positive now so that’s good! Thank you all for your kind words. Lots of love to you all!! :heart::heart::heart:


Hi @zaran
So pleased to hear that your surgery went well and you are on the road to recovery.

I am 2 weeks tomorrow post bilateral mastectomy and DIEP reconstruction, I am amazed at how quickly I have recovered without pushing myself.

I am socialising with friends, I even went out for dinner yesterday, I am doing short walks and going a little further each day (I am normally very active and walk a lot). Do be prepared for the tiredness but I have been listening to my body and having lots of daytime naps. The DIEP is softening each day and movement is becoming easier and I am thrilled with the results.

My last bit of advice would be if you are worried about anything contact your nurse, I developed a temperature on Tues morning and felt unwell, I contacted my nurse who saw me that afternoon. It turns out my silly sensitive skin was reacting to the dressings, so they were all removed and I have a course of antibiotics, 24 hours later everything had calmed down and I continue to heal well.

Hope your recovery continues to go well,

All the best xxx