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Lumpectomy/Mastectomy/Reconstruction - can't decide

8 REPLIES 8
bluebird
Member

Re: Lumpectomy/Mastectomy/Reconstruction - can't decide

Hi

Well my lymph nodes were clear, so at least it hasn't spread yet. I am still planning on doing chemo to shrink the tumour, even if I may not have needed it had I chosen a mastectomy. No doubt after a month or two I will be thinking "why am I putting myself through this", but I have to give it a chance.

Julie

truffle_shuff
Member

Re: Lumpectomy/Mastectomy/Reconstruction - can't decide

I found that to be true, the though of chemowas worse than the experience, I was very surprised and relieved, all my side effects were nipped in the bud, before they got a hold, take all you are offered to control them, you will come through the chemo
take care x

jacqui37
Member

Re: Lumpectomy/Mastectomy/Reconstruction - can't decide

Hi Bluebird,

Chemo may not be anywhere near as bad as you are expecting ... that was certainly my experience. Hope for the best, be prepared for the worst but don't expect it.

Good luck,
Jacqui

ljmostlyautumn
Member

Re: Lumpectomy/Mastectomy/Reconstruction - can't decide

Good luck Julie. Let us know how you get on.
xx

bluebird
Member

Re: Lumpectomy/Mastectomy/Reconstruction - can't decide

Hi

Well I have decided to try for a lumpectomy. I know chemo will be horrible, but the operation will be less. I had axillary node sampling a few days ago, and will be seeing the oncologist on 31st August. Chemo will start shortly afterwards. I know there is a chance it may not shrink enough, but I have to give it a try.
Thanks for your comments.

Julie

ljmostlyautumn
Member

Re: Lumpectomy/Mastectomy/Reconstruction - can't decide

Hi Bluebird. That is my username on other forums - good choice!
I had G3 BC in 2007. Lump too big - and it had spread to first few lymph nodes. I went for immediate mastectomy - needed to not reconstruct for chemo and radio asap. Chemo was tiring but NO NEED to feel sick these days! - give u anti-sickness with chemo and steroid tablets just for a few days. Don't be afraid - it will get systemically kill any stray cancer cells. Don't have implant if may need radiotherapy- it will be in the way. I had chemo, radio then tested for gene faults. In 2009 had prophylactic mastectomy and double recon using DIEP and TRAM flaps from tummy. As having both done I wanted them to look good - and the same as possible. Op was major and recovery was hard. (tho got a welcome tummy tuck too, lol)One tram partially failed, so when healed had the LD flap in Jan. (didn't want implants - not as realistic and often need replacing ev. 10 yrs or sooner)I AM sporty and was very worried like you. BUT I have had no problems at all! and have since returned to Pilates, Swimming, Golf and Badminton! OK I can't hit a shuttlecock quite as far as I used to, but that is a small price to pay. Following nipple recon and tattoos I have the most beaut pair ever! Even nicer than my previous ones thanx to breastfeeding 3 babies for a yr apiece. Pilates was a good way to stretch it and return to exercise gently. Many of the lying on floor pilates can be done leaning against a wall on your affected side initially, until you are healed. Any good instructor will tell you this! I have just finished writing a book about my experiences, and am looking for a good mainstream publisher to help as many women as possible.If anyone has any contacts, pls message me. When it's published I will put a link on here. It would help if readers on here voiced interest. In the meantime Good Luck and if u want to ask me anything, pls feel free to contact me. Lots of love.
Lisa.

elaine_r
Member

Re: Lumpectomy/Mastectomy/Reconstruction - can't decide

hello bluebird i found myself in a simular dilemha my tumor was to large 9cm to remove chemo was suggested to shrink it ive had had 7 session now my tumor is now 2cm i am now looking at a lumpetomy i will see my onc next week. you have to decide what is best for you chemo is scary to everybody but its doable take care elaine

Jo_BCC
Member

Re: Lumpectomy/Mastectomy/Reconstruction - can't decide

Hi bluebird,

Welcome to the Breast Cancer Care discussion forums, you'll find this is a good place for some good, honest support from the many informed users of this site.

While you are waiting for replies I have put for you below links to some of BCC's publications which you may find useful. As well as these and other publications there's also the helpline here if you feel you need someone to talk to about your diagnosis or in fact anything that is worrying you, the staff on the helpline offer a good listening ear, so don't deter from phoning if you need. Calls to the helpline are free, 0808 800 6000 lines open weekdays 9-5 and Saturdays 9-2.

Resource pack:

http://www.breastcancercare.org.uk/healthcare-professionals/publications/quick-order-list/*/changeTe...

Breast reconstruction:
http://www.breastcancercare.org.uk/healthcare-professionals/publications/quick-order-list/*/changeTe...

Reconstruction animation:
http://www.breastcancercare.org.uk/breast-cancer-breast-health/treatment-side-effects/surgery/recons...

I hope some or all of this helps. Take care,
Jo, Facilitator

bluebird
Member

Lumpectomy/Mastectomy/Reconstruction - can't decide

Hi

I was diagnosed last week, but told my lump was too big to have a lumpectomy without chemo first to shrink it. If it doesn't shrink enough, I'll have to have a MX anyway, and may have been put through chemo when I may not need it. (Chemo is the treatment I am dreading the most as I hate feeling sick). Also as my breast is already smaller than the other, after a lumpectomy there may not be much left at all! So may still have to wear something to pad me out.

If I decide on a MX, then I want a reconstruction. My surgeon suggested an LD flap or I could have just an implant. But I am not keen on having part of my back muscle taken away with, I presume, a longer recovery time. I am not a sporty person, but I do Pilates and I am learning which muscles should do what and don't get as much back ache as I used to. I am concerned if I lose a back muscle it will make my back weaker and I will start having more back ache again. (So I will always be reminded of BC). When mowing the lawn today I was aware that I was using my LD muscle as it was getting tired. But I am not keen on having a silicone implant either as I am concerned out it wearing out and leaking or eventually getting old and hard (so it will not match the other flabby breast when I get even older).

During the past few days I keep changing my mind about what I think may be best. Chemo and then lumpectomy (with probably a very small funny looking breast)? MX with delayed reconstruction? MX with immediate reconstruction? LD flap? Silicone implant?

I am going for an MRI scan on Monday, seeing the nurse on Tuesday and then the surgeon on Thursday (what a busy week!). I may find the MRI shows I need a MX anyway. So that may make some decision for me.

Sorry to ramble on, but I felt I must get this off my chest (excuse the pun). I will keep reading up on the subject until I go on Thursday, but any advice/comments from anyone would be appreciated.