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Lift off!! Next Thursday!!!

28 REPLIES 28
Neadi
Member

Re: Lift off!! Next Thursday!!!

Thanks everyone!!

3 weeks post surgery now. Doing ok, but drain STILL in. Was like a tap on wed and yesterday but seems to have slowed down today!
I really think it's playing mind games with me now!!!
Shazzaboro
Member

Re: Lift off!! Next Thursday!!!

Hi Neadi

Sounds like you are feeling much better, thats great! I started driving about 3 1/2 weeks after first op. Hospital say 4-6 weeks and my insurance company said as long as you can do an emergency stop. Before I tried driving I sat in the car with the seat belt on and went through the motions of changing gear, looking over my shoulder as if reversing and jerking forward like an emergency stop to see what the seat belt felt like and where it rubbed/touched. Once confident I could manage the movements my first trip was during a quiet time of the day to my local shop half a mile away. I felt like I'd just won a marathon

As for walking, I would take it slowly and build up. Start with a short walk around where you live, then gradually go further each time. Take a friend with you the first few times in case you are concerned.

As for the weird feelings and sensations they do ease off. If you are going to stroke your arm, do it very gently and use upward strokes, starting at the top of the arm, before doing the forearm then hand. Also I found it useful to use my arm as normally as possible, rather than protecting it by using the other one. Just don't overdo it to begin with and gradually you will be able to lift it further and it will get stronger. Flex you hand and arm regularly too as I think that helps too.

Keep strong and keep doing your exercises!
Shazz xx
Neadi
Member

Re: Lift off!! Next Thursday!!!

Hi tracy and cackles

I certainly will try all of those things- the variety of fabrics sound like a terrific idea!!!
Cackles
Member

Re: Lift off!! Next Thursday!!!

Neadi I hope all is going well. I hated the numb feeling and touching my armpit . I found a 'natural dpong' was perfect to wah the area without cringing!
Drive when you feel safe. Take somebody with you and make sure you can do an emergency stop and gear change without discomfort.
A lot of people drive themselves to Radiotherapy with few problems.

tracyld
Member

Re: Lift off!! Next Thursday!!!

Hi Neadi , with the nerve damage in your arm try and use lots of different materials and fabrics on the affected arm as this should ease your symptons. My physio said go from something very rough like sandpaper to something very soft, silky amd smooth to stimulate the nerves and it did work for me. I also used lots of different lotions on my arm and really gave it first class treatment to recover. Remember the arm exercises help as well and you can stroke your arm gently to help with any lymphatic drainage that is needed. I used lavender for this as the smell used to keep me calm along with burning a lavender incense stick. Pamper yourself and be kind to your body , it has been through a lot and it will take time. Healing thoughts are with you . Love Tracy xxx
Neadi
Member

Re: Lift off!! Next Thursday!!!

Hi ali and shazza!!

Yep, there have been loads of different sensations - numb , tingly, nerve pain like and then at times - sore. The one that is most annoying is the feeling ive a huge lump of cotton wool under my armpit when I put my arm down.......

Drain has slowed a little 120 mls yest, 95 mls today so going in the right direction!!!

When can you drive again after this type of op?
Also when can I get my runners on and go for a good long walk?? I know I'm only a week out if it, and maybe I'm expecting far too much, but it would be nice to get out and about......

Thanks again!!

Xx
Shazzaboro
Member

Re: Lift off!! Next Thursday!!!

Hi Neadi
Glad to hear everything went well and you are home. I had one of my drains in for about 10 days and still suffered a bit more fluid build up after, which was drained by the BCN painlessly and easily. So dont worry about it, it will get better, we all seem to take different times. I had chemo last week and it wasn't as bad as I thought. No pain or sickness and just a bit of nausea now and again but easily managed if you take all the meds they give you. I did suffer with thrush and a nasty boil but they are clearing up now and think thats as much to do with being run down as the chemo. I even went for a walk on the Friday! I'm not overdoing things but I'm not sitting around doing nothing either. I'm just doing what I can when I can, or want to, and resting as and when necessary. Keep strong!

Shazza xx
Ali_H
Member

Re: Lift off!! Next Thursday!!!

A lot of the numbness should ease I think? I was very numb under my arm, shoulder and boob area but quite a lot of it went after a few weeks. Still got some, I have to admit it is very, very strange and not always nice...but is a relatively small area. Have you had that funny, scratchy, tingly, sharp sensation of nerves re-knitting yet?
Neadi
Member

Re: Lift off!! Next Thursday!!!

Thanks nannabarb!

Good to know draining is normal. Now if I could get rid of the numbness it would be brilliant!!!!

Never happy!!!!!!! 🙂
nannabarb
Member

Re: Lift off!! Next Thursday!!!

Glad it all seems to have gone well NEADI, dont worry too much about the drain, this has been mentioned on another thread tonight, it can go on leaking for another week or more, but they are usually removed and dressed after max 2 weeks.
Just concentrate on getting well, have lots of rest and DO YOUR ARM EXCERCISES as far as you can with the drain, and with a vengeance when it is out.
xx
Neadi
Member

Re: Lift off!! Next Thursday!!!

Hi everyone!!

I had the mastectomy with auxiliary clearance last Thursday, and finally got home last night.

The doctors seem to think that everything went well, but came home with one drain- which is still draining quite a lot of fluid....

So hurdle 1over, just have to find something to do with all this free time!!!
Neadi
Member

Re: Lift off!! Next Thursday!!!

Thanks lyn.

I just finished up in work......now off to pack my bag for hospital.....

Xx
newstart
Member

Re: Lift off!! Next Thursday!!!

Hi Neadi,
I just wanted to wish you all the best for tomorrow. It is scarey, i rememeber it well but it was also a relief for me getting rid of the gremlin which had just turned my perfectly normal and happy life upside down.
I had my op done on a thursday, i was home friday lunch, tired but not feeling too bad. I also didn't wait for the pain to set in for the first week i religously took my tablets when directed, then started to cut them down slowly.
I hope everything goes really well for you, take advantage of everyone wanting to pamper you and above all put your feet up and let someone else take the load for a while.
big cyber hugs
Lyn
Neadi
Member

Re: Lift off!! Next Thursday!!!

Thanks a million for all of that!! Will certainly do that!!!

I just can't help feeling today is my last day of normality.... Just so sad. I know it has to be done and am hitting it head on, but just feel so so sad....
Sunshine_Lolli
Member

Re: Lift off!! Next Thursday!!!

Hi Neadi,
Best of luck with the operation and treatment plan. I had a mastectomy three weeks ago and am recovering well - it's really not as bad as it sounds. Listen to the medical staff and take their advice and you will be fine.
I had a leaflet from Breast Cancer Care with the post-surgery exercises but you can also request a free DVD (may wish to make a small donation for this). This came in the post shortly after I rang to request it and has been brilliant in keeping me disciplined to carry out the exercises and on track. Your recovery will be better if you do these as stated.
As regards the op, the two drains were a pain. The shoulder bag (post above) sounds brilliant - the nurse put mine in a pillowcase for me so I didn't have to keep admiring the contents!
As regards the pathology reports etc, just take one step at a time and don't overwhelm yourself with too much info at once. This was my consultant's advice and has really helped me because it really is a learning curve with lots to take in. When the time comes, download the Breast cancer Care booklet on Pathology Results - I read it and then bombarded my consultant/oncologist with loads of questions! They answered them all and I now feel in a much better place with peace of mind.
Will be thinking of you Thursday! All the very best.
Big Hug
Sunshine Lollipops x
Lucy_BCC
Member

Re: Lift off!! Next Thursday!!!

Hi Neadi

I am posting a couple of links to information you may find helpful in the BCC publications, one is 'Your operation and recovery' and the other is the exercise booklet you have mentioned:

http://www2.breastcancercare.org.uk/publications/treatment-side-effects/your-operation-recovery-bcc151

http://www2.breastcancercare.org.uk/publications/treatment-side-effects/getting-fitter-feeling-stronger-dvd-exercises-after-surgery-including-leaflet-bcc190

Take care and don't forget our helpline is open 9-5 weekdays and 10-2 Saturdays if you need a chat and a listening ear (0808 800 6000)

Lucy

Neadi
Member

Re: Lift off!! Next Thursday!!!

Thanks everyone!!

Feeling very very scared now

Just how will I feel when it's all over??

What on earth will they find? Is the pathology report vastly different to all the scans they have done????

I just wish it was over now at this stage!!!

Where do I find the booklet with the arm exercises?? It would be great to get on top of those!!!

Thanks xxx
VioletC
Member

Re: Lift off!! Next Thursday!!!

Just wanted to wish you good luck, sending positive thoughts your way for a speedy recovery xx
beverlie
Member

Re: Lift off!! Next Thursday!!!

Hi Neadi,
I had mx was in overnight and came home next afternoon with drains.
I had node clearance and insisted on leaving hospital and came home the same night with drains, not a big fan of hospitals, so wanted to be in my own bed.
Advice - I found front buttoning nighties / mens shirts oversized ladies shirts were the easiest to wear and elasticated jogging bottoms / linen pants (could pull on and off with one hand). Not sure if you've sorted post-surgery bra's, but I found pinning the 'softie' into an old halter-neck bikini top was the most comfortable for me - and still is.
Agree with Shazzaboro, do the exercises religiously, you will benefit from this longer term. If you can get the booklet off this website, have a look at them and practice - you'll know what your arm movement range currently is and is something to aim towards, plus they'll become second nature to you if you practice beforehand.
Drink plenty of fluid in the days running up to your op to be as hydrated as possible - nil by mouth (usually from the night before) means you'll be dehydrated (and can give rise nasty headaches) and when you come around, drink plenty of fluid to flush aneasthetic out of your system and get you back on track hydration wise. Keep on top of pain-killers that they give you, I found it easier to keep them in my system than waiting for them to 'kick-in' once I was in pain, so took them routinely for the first few days post-op.
Post-op I slept with a teddy bear on my chest to create a 'tent-like' effect to keep most of the weight of the duvet off my chest. I drank plenty of fresh fruit smoothies with added protein powder - protein I believe is necessary for the body to repair itself (and had these through chemo too). Within 2 weeks I felt normal post-op and overdid things and put my recovery back by a couple of weeks, so be gentle with yourself and take your time to recover fully and properly. Cording and nerve pain regeneration can be strange pains/sensations to contend with in your 'bad' arm post node clearance and every one is different, so you may not experience at all.
I had post-op physio for months as standard where I live, helped with cording issues and kept on top of getting arm movement range back - if you don't get this as standard, get your GP to refer you for this if possible.
There are some other threads which you may find on here with other useful tips, but hope that this helps a little in the meantime.
Good luck for your op and message me if you need further info, I'm not on this site so often but will pick up my mails.
Good luck for starting chemo Shazza, hope your SE's are minimal too
Bev x

tracyld
Member

Re: Lift off!! Next Thursday!!!

Hello Neadi,
I had a skin sparing masectomy with immediate reconstruction with a tissue expander. I recovered very well after the operation and was starving when I returned from theatre as I had waited so long to go down from 700am to after 3pm. It did seem a very long day but my hubby stayed with me all the time and we sat and did the crosswords and sudokos and chatted about all sorts of rubbish. I was moved to a private room as I had such a long wait so the nurse let me put all my belonging into the locker as she said she would make sure I came back to the same bay. It was good because I could get my things organised before I came back from theatre. I had two drains in place and was given a gift bag to put mine in which worked fine. The next morning I was able to go in the shower and was encouraged by one of the BCN to put a soft bra on. I always wear t shirt bras now as they work best fior me under my clothes. I did buy a couple of blouses to wear so that I did not have to pull anything over my head and I had PJ's instead of a nightshirt which again was much easier. I only stayed in 2 days and came home with the drains in.
I hope everything goes well for you on Thursday . Sending you love and lots of healing thoughts Tracy xxx
Neadi
Member

Re: Lift off!! Next Thursday!!!

Thanks Kerry.
Hope all going ok with you ??
Kerry1981
Member

Re: Lift off!! Next Thursday!!!

Hope it all goes well on Thurs xx
Neadi
Member

Re: Lift off!! Next Thursday!!!

Thanks nannabarb

I can't believe the journey is finally beginning.....
Let's hope it's a smooth one!!!
nannabarb
Member

Re: Lift off!! Next Thursday!!!

Hi Neadi
Wishing you all the best on Thursday xx
Neadi
Member

Re: Lift off!! Next Thursday!!!

Bump
Neadi
Member

Re: Lift off!! Next Thursday!!!

Thanks a million!! I really appreciate the reply!! The bag sounds like a great idea- somebody mentioned safety pins to pin to my pajamas!!!

I know I HAVE to do this, and I just want the lumps and bumps gone.....

Good luck on the 15th- a big day for both of us

Xx
Shazzaboro
Member

Re: Lift off!! Next Thursday!!!

Hi Neadi
I had my mx in August. I was feeling the same as you, think everyone does. I went down for the op about 2 o'clock and was sat talking to my family at 6 when they visited me on the ward. Can't remember much about the conversation as I was very tired and on morphine but I know I was surprised about how I felt. I was in discomfort from the drains more than from the mx. Both were bearable though and certainly not as bad as I was expecting. I was up and about a few hours later to go to the loo, just had to remember to take my drains with me everywhere or they did pull if I moved to far from them. The hospital gave me a cloth shoulder bag to carry them around in, which made it easier. The day after the op I got up and had a shower and washed my hair and managed to do it on my own, just need to keep the wound area dry. I went back for full node clearance in September. After the first op I was in hospital for a week, but that was because I didn't want to go home with drains in [I live alone]. Second op I was in 4 days. I have done the exercises I was given religiously to build up the strength and movement in my arm. I programmed them into the calendar on my phone, 4 times a day, and only clear the prompt when I have done them. Although there was only a month between my ops I managed to get a weeks driving in before the second op, after checking I could wear the seat belt and cope with a potential emergency stop. The exercises do work but only if you do them regularly.
If you can I would also recommend looking at the scar as soon as you can. It wasn't as bad as I thought it would be [still not a style choice though!] I didn't have a tissue expander fitted so am totally flat on one side.
I took a couple of loose t shirts to sleep in and practised putting them on without moving my left arm before I went in I did make a point of wearing clothes during the day, rather than pyjamas. Its a personal thing that made me feel better. It was just comfortable trousers and a front fastening blouse/loose t shirt with a cardigan over the top. This also meant I was less likely to spend all day in bed. When I could I got my visitors to take me down to the cafe at visiting time. It helped me build up my confidence and got my mobility levels back up.
Take a sports bra or crop top to come out in as they gave me a softie [soft comfortable prosthesis] to wear on discharge.
Other than that I took a couple of books to read and some magazines, plus the usual toiletries and make up. I was advised to take perfume free shower gel [such as simple] and a roll on deodorant rather aerosol.
Don't know if I got off easy but it certainly wasnt as bad as I was expecting and apart from a bit of extra fluid which slowed the healing down a bit I'm doing ok right now. Starting chemo on Thursday15th and occasionally 'forget' I've had the ops, at least in terms of discomfort.
Hope some of this has helped. Keep strong and good luck for your op
Shazza
Neadi
Member

Re: Lift off!! Next Thursday!!!

Oh is it sore???
Neadi
Member

Lift off!! Next Thursday!!!

hi there!! My mx is next Thursday nov 15th. Pretty scared and apprehensive about the whole thing to be honest. Because of me having one positive lymph node they're doing a clearance there too. I will be fitted with a tissue expander until I can have a diep reconstruction next year.

So, thus 37 year old is asking some advice about what to wear/ bring/ do, and some tips about getting up and at it ASAP!

So so afraid, but hopefully recovery begins here.....