77.2K members
1.2M posts
Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 

Second operation to remove all my lymph nodes


Re: Second operation to remove all my lymph nodes

Just got back from hospital today. The pain from this operation has been worse, dragging and sharp but I seem to be back on my feet a bit more quickly than with the mastectomy with implant at start of May. Very tired. Hate feeling so weak.

Re: Second operation to remove all my lymph nodes

Hi cath
Glad you are doing well !
My second op was more difficult and is a lot slower healing, got a little infection where it was so swollen at the wound site of the node clearance !
Saw my consultant today, it's healing ok, they found cancer I'm 5 of my 14 nodes, the clear margin from the lumpectomy and 2nd op was finally ok so I'm onto radiotherapy now 🙂
They are zapping the breast and up near my collar bone just to cover the higher nodes and make sure nothing has spread even though it was only five !
I have a sore numbness at the back of my arm and get some weird needly pains but some of the feeling is coming back a little 🙂
It's the first good news we have had In a very long while, so ladies there is always light at the end of that tunnel and there is always hope xxx

Re: Second operation to remove all my lymph nodes

Thankyou for updating us Cath. I have been dreading this op on 29th as I am in so much discomfort with this mastectomy and saline whoopee bag implant already. The thought of yet more has been making me feel aghast!

Re: Second operation to remove all my lymph nodes

I've had my node clearance operation and I don't feel as bad as last time. Not in as much pain or as washed out as last time. I think the 2 units of bloods I've had helped. Just got more waiting now for the results.

Re: Second operation to remove all my lymph nodes

Hi Cath and Horseslave


Sorry to hear you're having to go through more surgery, wishing you both all the best on this next step of your journey.


Horseslave, ANC stands for Axillary Node Clearance.


Lu xx

Re: Second operation to remove all my lymph nodes

I received the news today ( just looked at time, yesterday!) that I will have lymph nodes out on 29th May as the one they sampled was positive. Had hoped for better news to be honest but let's hope they don't find ant more nodes affected? What does ANC stand for?

Re: Second operation to remove all my lymph nodes

It is good to know that someone has gone through it and got some sensation back.

Got my bloods back and I'm still anaemic. Having a blood transfusion of 2 units tomorrow. Then I can go ahead with the operation on Friday.

Hate the waiting, as I just want to get on with my treatment.

Thanks for all your comments and good luck with everyone's treatments. X

Re: Second operation to remove all my lymph nodes

Hi I was diagnosed with DCIS in Jan 2013 had to have mastectomy on 12th  Feb 2013as tumour was 10 cm. Also had SNB.

Post surgery results were surgery got all the tumour and node clear. I went on waiting list for reconstruction and had DIEP March 2014. During that surgery they found an abnormal lymph node. Two weeks later my appointment with consultant was brought forward and he confirmed  there were cancer cells found in the node. 

I went back to my original consultant who said it was missed last year as the procedure to locate sentinel node is only  95%  accurate and were re-examining the pathology results  to find the invasive cancer. Hadd ANC on 29/04  

I was due to see consultant on 22/05 but just got call from hospital bringing appt forward to this Thursday at 5.30 pm so tagged onto end of his clinic.

Cant think of any reason for this other than more nodes are involved and they want to get treatment started quicker.

I had a clear CT two weeks ago so know its still local but am very scared yet again and now having to deal with comments of "well you knew there was a chance you'd need chemo" feel like hitting someone....

Re: Second operation to remove all my lymph nodes

Hi, I had the same last year - first op found sentinel nodes affected so had to have the rest removed.  I honestly didn't find the op or recover much different to my mastectomy, but yes, the drains are a pain!


I had chemo and radiotherapy too, ending just before Christmas.


The good news is that although still achey and can be a bit stiff, the sensation is slowly coming back!  My whole breast area and underarm to halfway to elbow were completely numb for several months, but the only area now affected is the actual armpit, and I can certainly live with that Smiley Happy


I hope it will be the same for you.


Good luck!

Re: Second operation to remove all my lymph nodes

Hi Cath,
Thank you for posting on here ! I'm sorry it's frustrating news x
This post has helped me, I'm in the same position although I had my chemo first to shrink my lump ! Had my surgery on 17 April, healed well and results came back Friday not enough clear margin and one of the four nodes they took was cancerous, so I'm now booked in for 13 may for more tissue and node clearance ! Then another two week wait for results. Was a shock and was really upset and I've been through so much already and just as you think you're getting better ......
I have lots of questions ill be asking my breast care nurse this week as it was all a bit quick and unexpected on Friday !
I am lucky that I have good support from hubby, family, friends and the hospital I am under have been fantastic all the way through my treatment !
Any advice that people have to get through this I am always happy to hear as sharing always helps !
Good luck with your operation keep us posted on how you get on,
Kay x

Re: Second operation to remove all my lymph nodes

Hi Cath
Welcome to the BCC forums

Along with the support you have found here, our helpliners are on hand with further practical and emotional support for you so please feel free to call, lines are open weekdays 9-5 and Sat 10-2 on 0808 800 6000

You may find some of our other support services helpful along the way, here's a link to information about these:


Best wishes
Lucy BCC

Re: Second operation to remove all my lymph nodes

Hi Cath, they do the lymph nodes in 2 stages because if the SNB is negative then you don't need anything else doing. The ANC is a bigger op, takes longer to get better and produces permanent numbness in armpit and inside upper arm, as well as stiffness and tightness. So it makes sense for everyone whose SNB is clear, and who thus avoid having an unnecessary ANC, but of course seems unnecessary and miserable when further surgery is needed :-(. My SNB showed 1 node involved so I had ANC, there were no more affected nodes so on the one hand it might seem like it wasn't necessary but on the other hand it's very reassuring to know. My op was only 5 weeks ago so can only tell you how it feels so far - see above. Others in 'surgery' threads can probably give you longer term info if you wish. All the best xx

Re: Second operation to remove all my lymph nodes

Hi Cath, yes I did have chemo and radio, the chemo was only a small benefit for my pathology - grade 2 ER+ 8/8 but was recommended due to my age, 43. I grabbed chemo with both hands, I wanted to ensure I done everything I could to prevent it coming back or spreading, the fact that it had already started travelling made chemo a no brainer for me.

Re: Second operation to remove all my lymph nodes

Thanks for the reply. I know what you are saying about it is better to make sure it is all clear. Makes me feel a bit better knowing you have had the same experience and the rest of your nodes were clear. Just hate the waiting and not knowing what is going to happen next.

Did you end up having chemo and radiation therapy?

Re: Second operation to remove all my lymph nodes

Hi Cath


I was diagnosed in January 2012, my initial ultrasound suggested by lymph nodes were clear, I had a WLE and SNB, but, like you, one came back positive for cancer, a tiny micromet so the cancer had just started to travel. I then went back in 6 days later and had the rest removed, they were all clear. I found the second operation much harder and more painful but to be honest most of that was caused by the drain, once that came out I was fine. I suffered loss of sensation in the armpit, the top of my arm and shoulder blade and this has not returned, it used to really bother me, but it doesn't anymore. I know it's a pain having to go back in for further surgery, but it's better than leaving any potentially cancerous ones in there wreaking havoc.


Wishing you the best of luck with your surgery and ongoing treatment.


Take care


CC x

Second operation to remove all my lymph nodes

I've had a mastectomy with sentinel nodes removal and my results showed the first node wasn't clear but the second was. So I now have to go through surgery and recovery again as they are going to remove all of my lymph nodes to check they are all clear. Feel frustrated that they didn't do it all in one operation and I have to go through it all again. Has anyone else gone through this? The consultant said I might lose sensation around my armpit and the top of my arm. Has anyone got any advice? I still have to wait another 3 weeks before they will operation as I lost a lot of blood during my first operation and I'm suffering tiredness due to being anaemic. Just feels like one thing after another.