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immediate reconstruction

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Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

hi rEBECCA AND pOLLY

SORRY ABOUT THAT BRAIN MUSH! I've added a thread on the chemo messages - TAC starting 15th May

speak soon Jen x

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

Hi Polly (and Jennie)

Well, it took 5 hours yesterday and was OK. Woke up this morning with a very red face, slightly sore tummy (think was the thai chicken curry from last night though!), sore right eye, slightly numb tongue and very slight nausea. By the afternoon I feel fine, but a bit tired as woke up at 2am and only dozed after that.

I can't bear to think of all the drugs going through me, even though it is a means to an end and the only option for me.

Hope you are both OK. Glad I haven't lost my appetite - hurrah! Things may change though..

Rebecca xxx

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

Hi Rebecca and Jennie

Just to let you know I have been thinking about you both starting your chemo yesterday and today. Hope you are not feeling too grotty.

Love and hugs
Polly xx

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

Hi everyone

Jennie - great news! I am at Springfield, but also under Prof Davidson. I have only met him once, but really liked him. He is so matter of fact it makes me laugh. A friend of mine said that at the initial consultation meeting she asked if she would put on weight with chemo, and his reply was 'only if you eat a lot'!!! Will be interesting to compare notes. Which chemo are you on? Think I am going to be on the TAC, the strong stuff.... joy. I have mixed feelings about starting, but I think more of me wants to get on with it, so I can finish sooner. I have already decided we are all going to San Francisco next Easter so I want some decent hair by then!

Polly - grim for you, but you sound like you have put up with so much, this will be a breeze??!!

Diane - know how you feel. I keep on thinking that if only the sodding mammogram had shown the lump to be so much bigger, I would have had one op less and I would be in the middle of my treatment by now. - Ahhhhhhhhhh

Now, off to enjoy the sun. My childrens' school have a fun day today, and there will be a beer tent and a Pimms stall. I have an appointment at the hospital this evening, but I plan to walk there....!!

Love
Rebecca
xx

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

Hi everyone

thought I would share my good news-my tummy is now mended- had the op last Tuesday and had a check up with the surgeon who is happy with it!!! I am sooooo thrilled I feel nearly normal as he told me I can shower as usual again.! Today I even wore " normal trousers" instead of pull up jogging bottoms-progress!!!!!

Unfortunately this means the chemo can now go ahead as planned on the 15th April- next Thursday-ahhhh! Went to tell my oncologist today and he also confirmed my bone scan was clear so I'm having a couple of really good days.What did I do???- retail therapy in the sun.

The only thing about feeling "normal" again is that as soon as the family get a scent of this,it's ok to dump on mum again --grrrrr! No! I'm in a good mood and I'm just going to ignore it - for now!!!

night night anyway from a quite happy nearly normal Jennie xxx

Polly - I feel for you,I hope you are ok x
Diane - It's "normal" to cry - lol!!! Lately I watched some soppy music channel and I cried through every video.
Rebecca - I'm at Broomfield under Prof Davison - lovely man!!!!!

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

Hi all

Hope you are all enjoying the sun. Just thought I would share with you my added bonus, I now have a breast abscess in my non-reconstructed breast. Hey ho it never rains...................

Polly xx

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

Thanks polly,
I'm not as worried about op after reading everyones experiences on here. That doesnt stop me bursting into tears at the drop of a hat though! must remember to take tissues out with me. Keep having to pull over in the car and search for something to mop my face with.

take care everyone
Diane x

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

Hi Diane

I am sure like the rest of us you will find this site to be an amazing crutch, especially when you are feeling low. Good luck for your op.

Hugs Polly xx

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

Hi Ladies just been sitting here reading all your comments. It has really cheered me up! It is nice to know that I'm not the only one who is going through all this crap. I found a small lump in january (right breast) and have since had a lumpectomy then a wide local incision with node removal. Luckily my nodes were clear but still got dodgy cells. My surgon told me that masectomy with reconstruction was the best course of action. So here I am I will have my op Ldflap in ten days! I have been ok till this weekend now my bottle has gone. But do feel better now Thanks to this site. Must get to bed now so I can toss and turn for a couple of hours till I get my daughter up for school.
Take care Ladies Diane x

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

Hi Rebecca

I agree about life changing with the diagnosis. You view things differently don't you think. I see people getting so stressed about stupid things and I think they are so petty. My husband will get mad with our boys (teenagers) about something and it will really bug him, but the same thing doesn't bother me because it is usually unimportant in the big scheme of things.

Life is short you don't know what is round the next corner, live for today!!!

Much love Polly xx

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

Hi Jennie and Polly

Firstly, Jennie - HOW WEIRD IS THAT??? Are you Broomfield or Springfield?

Polly - I bet you did want to hit your oncologist. I guess first time, it is all such a strain and you just want to get over it. To do that twice more must be terrible. Of course, hideous though it is, you will be alive at the end of it, and hopefully, for many years to come. Guess it is just a part of life now isn't it. Even though I am still at the beginning of the journey, whatever happens I know that my life changed forever on the 15th January and it will never be the same again, for the good and the bad. Oh, must be the sun making me all pensive...

Well girls, hang on in there, 'speak' soon..
Rebecca
xx

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

polly

I feel the same about my hubby too! I have made arrangements for him all weekend to see friends and go to our local garden show with a friend. I don't want him just thinking of me all the time! When I talk to him about this he gets cross with me and tells me he wouldn't have it any other way then I get upset as it's just not fair!!!!!!! His argument is that if the tables were turned I would be there for him and his best bit " in sickness and in health etc etc ...."

Don't you think this website is fantastic,I feel that it's been my crutch so far and if I can help anyway that I can I will,these are hard times and no one should suffer quietly!!!! OOOh I'm getting all heavy stop now must be time for chocolate!!!!!!!!

hugs n stuff Jen x

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

Jennie

Thanks for the suggestion of the feelings diary. I may just give it a go. It is so nice to have other people in the same boat as yourself to chat to. Family and friends are very supportive, but they can't begin to understand this hell. Having said that, I do feel so guilty about putting my hubby through all this again (not that I can help it). He is so brilliant, but this affects him in so many ways too.

Speak soon

Polly xx

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

Polly

don't beat yourself up!!! You are being so hard on yourself!! I went to see my chemo nurse the other day thinking I can handle this!!! When I got there I just ranaway-it hit me like a ton of bricks- calmed down after a while.I just kept thinking it's going to be a tough year-then like you found out I'm having Herceptin after the chemo for a year too. I'm going to be having the TAC drugs and I've been told they are quite harsh on your body. I am scared and at times I feel like I'm dissappearing.But we have to be strong!!!! Saying that I think you are entitled to have a whine!!!!

A friend of a friend who has got to the other side suggested a feelings diary - I started one and have found it really helps- I even jot down things my kids say or music I here that starts me blubbing,give it a try and perhaps let me know!!???

thinking of you Jen x

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

Hi Rebecca and Jennie

Hope your tummy is on the mend Jennie. I know what you mean Rebecca about feeling anxious and morbid. One day they tell you one thing and the next the picture seems to alter. Here was I positive as always even after being diagnosed for the third time. Had my DIEP surgery, healing very well, all staging scans clear, even decided to go back to work on 19th May. Feeling very pleased with myself at beating it again!!!!

Then I saw my oncologist, I was feeling OK as scans clear and offending breast now gone - then he told me he wanted me to have chemo for 8 months and Hercepin after for 12 months. I wanted to hit him. At first I said I didn't want it as I had it before and that didn't stop a recurrence. He was very blunt (he needs to be when I am an emotional wreck) and said if I didn't have it now the next time it might be secondaries in my lungs and he can't cure me then!!!!

What could I say to that. He was very good though, and as we have got a cruise booked (and paid for) in early July and I don't want to be bald and feeling like s***t on holiday I can start as soon as we get back. He changed my Aromasin to Femera to take in the meantime.

I can't help feeling like giving up though, the thought of another 19 months of treatment fills me with dread.

I feel bad whining but I just can't get my head round it this time.

I am in sunny Staffordshire by the way.

Much love
Polly xx

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

Rebecca

I can't believe it!!! I'm starting mine the 15th at Chelmsford!!!!!!! I'll chat more later so enjoy your sunshine too! speak soon Jennie x

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

Hi Jennie and Polly

Jennie - I would have gone for the General as well! This should be the end of it now hopefully for you and you will be healed.

Yes, as you say, busy busy time girls. Had a PET/CT scan in London this week (near Oxford Street, so went a bought a wig from Selfridges - can think of better ways to spend a day in London..), then a bone scan yesterday. I met a friend for lunch during the 3 hour break! Shame I couldn't have a glass of wine. Various meeting with the physio, plastic cons, onc etc etc next week. Start chemo on the 16th May.

Am feeling very anxious and morbid at the moment. I just can't believe I presented with an 18mm lump, and am now at this stage - around 4-5 cm, Grade 3, node involvement (Ok, only one...) and this treatment which seems to be the maximum someone can have. I feel they are not telling me something. I hate this state of paranoia, especially as I was feeling 'great' a while back! - ahhhhhhhhh.

I am in sunny Chelmsford, Essex by the way. Where are you two?

Enjoy the bank holiday!
Rebecca
xx

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

Hi Rebecca

I too saw my PS on Friday (3 weeks post op). She too said I was a model patient. Scars healing well. No dressings or anything needed now. I have to see my oncologist on Thursday. I don't know what he is going to say as I have had rads and chemo before and I am hoping I can escape this time. I did have staging tests before my surgery and they were clear but his tumour was HER2+ though like my previous 2 have been, so I am not sure he will send me off with nothing more than Aromasin which is what I have been taking for the last 4 or so years.

Jennie, I am so sorry you have to be re-admitted for your wound, hopefully once they have done that it will heal quickly.

Polly xx

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

Hi Rebecca

well aren't you doing well!!! I'm still having problems with my tummy and now have to go in Tuesday for it to be cleaned and stiched. I am so squeamish I've asked for a general rather than local and they have agreed. It's only a day stay though. I thought perhaps I am over reacting but when I have spoken to my BS she said she didn't blame me and she would have suggested a general herself!

I'm starting my chemo soon and will be on TAC too. Six weeks like yourself but so far no rads. I have such a busy week -

Monday GP wants to see how I am-worried about my mental state I think!
Tuesday tummy op. Have to be there at 7.30am- got to arrange child care
Wednesday - recovery - hopefully
Thursday Bone Scan - what a day.Have to be there 9.15 for injection and wait around 3-5 for x-ray-again arrange child care
Friday - pre-assessment at Chemo unit - I'm a bit apprehensive but its just to familiarise myself and a chat.

I'm seeing the onc on 8th May to discuss scans and to see if TAC is still suitable. Let you know my start dates after that and we can compare notes!!!!

As for the sunshine,well I was in the garden chatting with a friend all afternoon and didn't realise my arm was in the sun so a bit sore today-luckily not my "bad arm" .Where down South are you Rebecca?

speak soon Jennie x

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

Hi everyone

Saw my plastic surgeon after 3 weeks, and he was SO pleased with me. Felt very chuffed afterwards. I love him. He told me to ditch the girdle, drive, and do anything really (within reason!). Guess I am very lucky not to have problems with the scars. He said he sees ladies who are 12 weeks post op and they are still stooping when they walk etc. He did say, state of mind is so important...

Saw the onc yesterday, and he wants to wait 6 weeks for chemo (they did say 4-6 weeks). I was hoping as I was such a 'superstar', I could get on with it after 4 weeks, but he says the cells etc around the reconstruction have to sort themselves out. Damn, more time to wait. He is putting me on the strong stuff TAC, which sounds a bit strong and scary, but hey, whatever works. 6 of that, then 25 radiotherapy. Have to have scans first as I haven't had any yet.

So, a few weekends to go, so am planning as much as possible. Went to a wig shop yesterday which was a bit of a strange experience.

Hope you all have some of the sunshine we have down South!
Rebecca
xx

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

Hi Jennie

Glad to hear your tummy is on the mend. After my last lumpectomy in 2004 I had a haematoma, and ended up with a big hole in my chest. It had to be packed and dressed daily for 5 months. At the time it was hell, but that healed eventually - mind you that has all gone now I've had a mastectomy. But it will heal eventually and it sounds like your hubby is a star.

Polly x

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

hi everyone!

polly- My tummy is getting there-slowly still.My husband tells me that he can now start to see an improvement which is good.I'm seeing my PS this afternoon,mostly at our request as I don't want this to delay the chemo.I feel like I'm stooped when I walk as I'm protecting it,but it is uncomfortable! If it wasn't for this I would feel really good! Even my arm is improving.I'm wearing big knickers now which is sooo good after that girdle.Although I do think it did a god supporting job!

Lisa - hi - as I said I'm having chemo soon but no rads. I'm down south I'm afraid.Good luck whatever stage you are at.

Jennie x

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

Hi Ladies

Did anyone have immediate recon in the north east - eg Middlesbrough
Did anyone need radiation or chemo after?
ANyone with paget?

Lisa

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

Hi Rebecca
Your friend has the right attitude, it is so important to be positive. This is my third episode of BC and I would have gone mad by now if I allowed it to win.

You sound a bit down, keep your chin up you'll get through it.

I am not wearing girdle etc and my tummy is virtually healed now. My biggest problem is nerve irritation in my leg. It keeps my awake at night with burning or stabbing pain, but I am hoping this will improve with time. I am back to see my PS on 25th for post op check and oncologist on 3rd May.

Jennie, how's your tummy healing?

Polly xx

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

Hi Jennie (and Polly!)

Back on the forums now after reading a few strands which depressed me.. Saw your comments on other links, and hope all is getting better with your tummy and that you are sleeping better. I find I am absolutely knackered in spite of sleeping well!. I had lunch with a new 'cancer friend' yesterday who had our op exactly a year ago. She has finished with everything and is off to the Canaries soon with her new man (who she met just after surgery!). She is so refreshing as is so blase about everything - ditched the stockings, girdle etc after about 2 weeks, drove after 3 weeks! I am just doing what they tell me, then there will be no comebacks. What a wimp! That said, in the main I think I am doing well, just very tired. Results back last Tuesday and still just the one node affected, others clear. I was on a high for two days, but now thinking ahead... have you your chemo dates yet? I see the onc on Friday. Dreading the next stages, but the sooner I start, the sooner I finish.

Wishing everyone well
Rebecca
x

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

it is sooooo reassuring to hear all your comments. I am not sleeping much either! Because of this I am becoming ratty with everyone.Last night I even took my gross amount of pillows(including v shape-which I recommend!) and slept for a while on the sofa.The only problem was getting up-I needed the toilet in the middle of the night,luckily my husband (who couldn't sleep as he was worried about me) helped and eventually I went back to bed. On average I now sleep for about 2 hours at a time. I am really missing curling up into a ball and sleeping all night,plus a good soak in the bath.My tummy is taking forever to heal!!!!!

I know having a positive attitude will help but with lack of sleep I am beginning to feel really low. I even sat and watched the beginning of the marathon this morning!

Hubby is taking me out today to buy some big knickers -whoopee!! Hopefully fresh air and retail therapy might encourage me to have a nap this afternoon.

well speak soon -remember to take it easy- and Rebecca I'll try the chanting anything has got to be better than crying to sleep Jennie xxx

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

Hi all.
I know what you mean about sleeping. I have just had a bad night and am up at 7.00 on a Sunday when the rest of the household are sleeping. I don't sleep on my back ever usually so being propped up with pillows so you don't roll over is a pain. I think I overdid things yesterday as last night I had a burning sensation in my thigh which is nerve compression under the abdo scar I think. Positive mental attitude is half the battle, so keep it up. Love to all Polly xx

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

Hi ladies, I had a skin-sparing mastectomy and immediate DIEP six weeks ago and the tummy is doing well, though my scar has small 'dog-ears' which will be tidied up when I eventually go for nipple reconstruction. The recon breast is harder and fuller than the normal one, and aches a bit by the evening, though I was told to wear a level 4 high impact sports bra, and a Playtex 18 hour firm control panty-girdle, day and night for three months. I got the M&S girdles, which aren't as good, and prefer the Berlei Shock Absorber bra for support, though the Marks ones are fine to sleep in - the Berlei one is smaller cut, need a bigger chest size but the same cup as usual. I also had a V pillow on top of normal ones to prop me up into more of a sitting position, and a pillow under my knees to stop me trying to roll onto my side, which is how I normally sleep. The little cat that sleeps by my feet found it quite strange and started sleeping beside me instead!

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

Hi Polly and Jennie

Glad things are going OK for you both (mmm, 'OK' in this world doesn't seem the right word?!). Yes, what different stories we are all told. I am on strict orders not to drink caffeine, but can drink wine. Suits me!

I dread going to bed as they said I have to sleep on my back with about 4 pillows to keep me upright. It is my back which is hurting me more than anything after sleeping in that position!

As a friend of mine who is one year down the line told me 'chant PMA - Positive Mental Attitude!', which I try to do when I get down. I am not one of life's 'chanters', but I keep saying it, hoping it might work..

Lots of love
Rebecca
xx

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

hi all

Polly Ive just left comments on another thread so hello again!

Rebecca -hi! Glad all went well for you and hope you are having lots of TLC!

I'm now 3 weeks post op was in hospital for 10 days-they didn't seem to rush to get rid of me!. Everyday is different.Yesterday was a low day- my tummy is healing very slowly and I am not sleeping very well.I had to go and see the dressing nurse and she has told me things are improving,which was reassurring. Had physio aswell,exercises are getting easier too. Corset thing is driving me MAD!!!! Told I can wear big knickers now although don't know how I'll manage.

Had my follow up appmt with BS on Monday and was told 2/18 nodes affected so have been referred to oncologist (21st April) BCN told me this was good but still will have to have chemo which I am dreading. Some days I think "bring it on!" others I just feel "why me?"

But as everyone tells you -be positive be strong-lol!!!!!!

keep well Jennie xxxxx

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

Hi Rebecca

I cam home 8 days postop. All seems well at the moment. They didn't tell me to wear any special bra or corset, just an elasticated crop top and tight pants. It's amazing how all surgeons are different isn't it? Every day is a bit easier though.

Next step ..... dressings off!!

Keep going

Polly xx

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

Hi Jenny (we 'spoke' some time back), and to Polly, who had the DIEP op same date as me! Polly, obviously am interested how you got on as we were under the knife on the same day? I am at home trying not to do much, and still can't get over the fact I don't have a belly any more! I have to say, those first few days in hospital were not pleasant but only a week later I am a different person. It is strange how quickly you get used to things in this hideous journey isn't it? The awful bra and knickers/corset seem part of me already...

Hope you are both feeling well. Another stage over..

Rebecca
x

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

Hi everyone

I have finally got my date, going in 1st April for op on 2nd. I am having DIEP. I have pushed to get a date and now I have got it I am scared but can't wait at the same time. I am thinking about you going in tomorrow JennieF and wish you all the best for your op. Let us know how it went when you feel up to it.

Good luck

Polly xx

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

Hey Jennief,

Congrats on getting your Op date. If I'm up and about I'll let you know how mine went - I'm in a week today - in fact this time next week I will nearly out of Theatre!!!
Bring it on!!!

Good luck.
xx

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

Hi Jen
Glad you got your date. I saw my PS yesterday. We have agreed on the DIEP surgery. I don't have a date yet. I have got to see the rest of her team on Thursday. She did say it will be within a month.

I know what you mean about work, I should have been on annual leave next week, but as I am going to be off work for weeks I thought I would go in and tie up loose ends. My husband wasn't happy and we ended up rowing, but I would rather be off knowing I haven't left my colleagues in a mountain of work. Do you know what I mean?

I wonder why the bra has to be black!!!

Polly xx

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

hi everyone

well I got my date! 17th March go in ready for op next day. I feel so relieved now I can plan things around it. It's times like this that multi tasking is a god send!! My date is 5 weeks after my diagnosis.I did think it would be quicker than this but my breast care nurse advised me that the op would be anything up to 6 weeks after dx.Not sure if I feel reassurred that it's taken so long-perhaps the "c" isn't that bad-eh??!

I've been advised to get a couple of bras that are 2 sizes bigger than usual round the back-well I'm usually a 42dd so going to look hard! My friend suggested a maternity bra as they are supportive and soft so I'm going to have a look.Oh and they said preferably black-seems strange-I'll be wearing nice pastel colour nightwear and black bra! I'm sure when I'm in there everyone else will be the same and who cares anyway?!

How did you get on Polly? Hope its positive -been thinking of you!
I suddenly realised at work the other day that I only have a few days left( I work at a college-so its academic year) Probably won't be back until September if then.I got really upset then as I'll miss the "normality" of things. But can't believe the amount of new friends I have made-thanks Jen x

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

Hi Jen

Thanks for the advice about asking the PS for pictures etc. 31 days!!! that's a long time to wait, I thought it would be within a couple of weeks, anyway I'm seeing my PS on Friday this week so I'll keep you posted.

I had some plastic surgery (scar revision and breast reduction on the right) on December 7th and thats when they found the cancer, we are nearly in to March now so it's quite scary.

I'm having a bone scan and ultrasound tomorrow to see if it has spread anywhere else. Fingers crossed.

Polly xx

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

Hi ya!

Sorry to hear about your situation polly. I'm going for immediate DIEP reconstruction.As you may have read my thread. I opted for this as I'm not sure if I would bother going back after time. My husband reckons it will help my self-esteem which can be quite low at the best of times. The plastic surgeon was so enthusiastic about the "work" that I felt he would make a good job.

One piece of advice I would suggest,is to ask the surgeon for pictures of work he has carried out.Don't be afraid to ask as many questions,I was in there for ages asking all sorts of questions about the procedure.Now I feel that I think more about the reconstruction than the cancer!

My problem now is that I am waiting for a date. I've been advised this could be up to 31days! So then I start to think should I have opted for reconstruction later?? Or perhaps my cancer has been caught very early and I'm not as urgent as I believed! Now who's ranting!!!

I first went to my consultant on the 17th Dec and was diagnosed 18th Feb so I've had terms to come to terms with this although being "normal" is so so hard.I do feel this is one place I can rant though in fact I have felt this site has been tremendous support and comfort. I hope you find this to Polly and Lyn ,Jen x

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

Hi, I am new to this site. I was first diagnosed in 1999 and had WLE chemo and radiotherapy, since then I have had another occurence in same breast and had segmenctectomy and was advised by oncologist to have my ovaries removed, which I did. I take Aromasin daily. My cancer has now come back in the same breast again and I am now facing mastectomy. I feel numb and somehow detached from my own body. I feel angry that I had my ovaries removed, which in turn caused immediate menopause, only to have the cancer return anyway. I think I would like to go for the immediate DIEP reconstruction and feel encouraged by your comments on this site. I want it all done at the same time as the mastectomy so I can come out of this one "finished". I know I am ranting but I have had enough now.

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

Hi, I know what you mean, I haven't cried either. Don't know if it's head in the sand denial, numbness, or just stiff upper lip. My kids are older, 16, 19 and 21 and I sometimes think they'd rather I stopped being so perfectly normal, though the younger two refuse to discuss it and the youngest just changes the subject.

I want recon for myself but also because I think it's important for them that I look as normal as possible. I am getting the feeling they're worried about coming to visit in hospital in case it looks terrible. I wish I could wind the clock back - or forward - and escape these weeks since the dodgy mammogram.

Lyn xxx

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

Hi new pal Jen!

I haven't cried much yet, but know the rivers will flow soon.. Like you, I have a great support network - everyone is pulling out the stops and all my friends are acting really 'normally' with me - brilliant.

Yes, I do wonder about the left boob (especially if I lose weight after the op! - fingers crossed), but I'll wait to hear what he says, but that can wait as you say.

When you say 'therapies', what do you mean? Are you having chemo and radiotherapy too, or are you 'lucky' just to have a mastectomy?

Yes, my half term was a bit odd - thankfully the weather was great so I was out and about with the children (4 and 😎 a lot. Everything is still surreal - nothing seems the same any more.

Nice to hear from you - we'll get through it!
Rebecca
xx

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

Hi Rebecca

Things seem to be moving quite fast don't they???

I've got to have a mascectomy on my right side soon although a date hasn't been arranged.I saw my plastic surgeon on Wednesday and have opted for an immediate DIEP reconstruction.This is from the abdomen but no muscle is taken. The surgeon was quite excited he wants me to go back for a lift on the left breast and a nipple reconstruction afterwards! That I'll think about later.

As for any other treatment I have been told that I may have all therapies as I am young (40) and in good health. But personally I'm taking one thing at a time.I can't seem to cry anymore just feel a bit numb.

I have 2 children too (6+13) and half term was awlful as I was given the news on the Monday and I really didn't feel up to much for the rest of the week. As for Easter and Summer hols I'm the same can't plan too much.But both my kids have been fantastic.Friends and family have bee so supportive and have offered to have the kids at any time which so far has been good.

Well good luck on Friday let us know how you get on
from your future flat tummy and pert boobed new friend! Jen x

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

Hi everyone

I am new to this site, but I suspect it is really going to help me get through the next 6-8 months! I found a lump about 5 weeks ago, it was considered small by the consultant and I had a lumpectomy and sentinel node biopsy a couple of weeks ago. Anyway, my results were not good - the lump was almost twice the size they thought and I have one node affected. From thinking I would just need some radiotherapy to now facing a mastectomy (right one), lymph clearance, chemo and probably radiotherapy my head is everywhere!

I have decided to have an immediate reconstruction, but because there are options, I am always thinking I have chosen the wrong one. Reading your messages help. I am 42 with two young children and just angry that my Easter and Summer holidays are now not possible! Anyway, I am seeing the plastic surgeon next Friday and the thought of a flat tummy is the only positive thing I can think of at the moment!

Looking forward to 'chatting' with you all
Rebecca

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

Hi palomino and fudgey

You may find it helpful to look at the Breast Cancer Care information booklet on reconstruction, it can be found at the following link:-

http://www.breastcancercare.org.uk//docs/breast_reconstruction_dec06_web_0.pdf

I hope this is useful to you.

Best wishes

Lucy

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

Yes, that's what I thought, and I'm intrigued to see what he ends up doing... I know I'm not remembering conversations as accurately as I'd like, but he seems to be talking about using a tiny piece of abdominal muscle along with tissue from below my navel. I will try to get this clarified during my various appointments next week!

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Re: immediate reconstruction

Palomino
I thought the op which didnt use the muscle was the diep and not the tramflap/ can you cofirm please

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Re: immediate reconstruction

Hi Jennie, I have opted for immediate DIEP but my surgeon is now saying possibly muscle-sparing TRAM would be better. I made a huge fuss about the length of time not driving, which may be longer with DIEP, but I thought it would give better results. Have you seen Elaine Sassoon's book, The Boudicca Within? Nice pics of brave ladies. I suggested the plastic surgeon should give copies to every patient!

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Re: immediate reconstruction

thanks everyone for your stories they have been a great help!

I saw my plastic surgeon today and was very impressed.I have decided on the DIEP procedure.I'm quite large (all over) and thought a tummy tuck maybe a good idea!! The surgeon seemed to agree and offered to lift the left breast at a later date.

As for should I put myself through this if it may have spead- well the surgeon was very reassuring ,telling me that the order of concern is - me,the cancer,then the reconstruction.So at any stage I decide and no one else what and when things happen.

I saw plenty of photos of befores,durings and afters and I now know I have made the right decison for me.Unfortunately my breast surgeon was in surgery so unable to make the meeting so no date has been set yet.Hopefully it will be soon!! Watch this space

thanks again Jen x

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Re: immediate reconstruction

Hi, i had immediate recon, but my surgeon took the lymphs out first so that he could see if i needed rads or not, luckily i didn't but if i had have needed rads he would have just put an implant in and done the back flap at a later date (the rads can make the muscle hard and can damage any implants), so i had mine all done two weeks after the lymph removal, i also had an implant, i have to say if i wear a t shirt without a bra you can't tell that I've had a recon its that good, i also had a nipple recon but unfortunately some of it died but that's a different story, all the best in whatever you decide
Alisonxxxxxxxx

Member

Re: immediate reconstruction

Hi Jen

How did you get on with your plastic surgeon?

I have had a left mastectomy with LD back flap and implant, 4 weeks ago. I am having right side done in a few weeks. I plan to have nipples recon with tatooing also and, like Moira, I will let my partner see the end result when all is complete. I am still a bit bruised and my new breast feels a bit hard still.

I have managed on simple analgesia, but have to admit I have not done my exercised as often as I should. I am back to virtually full activity now though.

Good luck in whatever you decide.

Jackie x