Thank you so much for responding to my message. It really helps to have support in this forum. I'm so sorry you had to have the mastectomy, but it sounds like you are doing good. I totally would have the other side removed as well. Then you probably won't have to have as much imaging done, so that will be a positive. I am still on the fence about if I want to do reconstruction. I'm 50 and I just feel that it may be hard looking in a mirror with two flat tires. My girls have been with me for 50 years and the thought of them leaving quite soon is sad. But, life is more important than having boobs! 😥 Next week I go to see my plastic surgeon to sign paperwork. I really need to decide soon. The risks of having complications with the reconstruction is what's giving me some hesitation and the tissue expanders. 🙄
Hi TLC 2019
I’m sorry you’ve had to go through such a worrying time, having two diagnoses in a short time is a blow but it sounds like you have a very good and thorough doctor.
I had 3 lumpectomies for invasive ductile carcinoma, no lymph nodes involved, as they had problems getting a clear margin I then had 25 sessions of radiotherapy and was put on an oestrogen blocker, Anastrazole, as I was ER+. About a year later I noticed some concerning problems with the nipple on that side and after a biopsy was diagnosed with Paget’s Disease, which is a fairly uncommon cancer of the nipple. I then had a mastectomy, which I agreed was the best decision, due to the previous diagnosis. I didn’t opt for reconstruction, as I had other health issues and wanted as short an op as possible. The problem now is that because I am big breasted, I have to wear a large false boob, which is not very comfortable and never seems to fit properly in any bra I buy. Also the unbalanced weight of the remaining boob causes me neck and shoulder pain and is actually affecting the muscle under it. I have therefore taken the decision to have the remaining breast removed, which my surgeon supports. This is also for risk reduction, as BC runs in the family . This week I am speaking with the clinical psychologist to discuss my decision, which is a requirement in my part of the country if a healthy breast is to be removed. I have decided to remain flat on both sides at the moment I am 67 and have no concerns over body image but I completely understand how some women may feel differently, especially if they are younger. It’s a very personal decision, which I have thought carefully about Having a mastectomy because of cancer seemed the only and best option at the time but removing a healthy breast is something else.
Sending you hugs. 💕
I was diagnosed with Invasive Ductal Carcinoma on a bed of Ductal Carcinoma In Situ last December 2019 in my left breast. I had a Lumpectomy and Sentinel Node Biopsy. Margins came back clear and nothing went to the lymph nodes. I then had 20 days of radiation and after radiation have been on Tamoxifen to help keep the estrogen levels down which helps to keep my type of cancer away.
July 2020 I went to a checkup. The doc felt a lump on the opposite side (my right side). I had mammogram and sonno which revealed an area of concern. That lead to biopsy which revealed atypia foci (abnormal cells) within a papilloma. Then Lumpectomy revealed Ductal Carcinoma In Situ and they didn't get clear margins so it's still in there. An MRI was then done and revealed a big area behind where the lumpectomy was done. My doc looked at the images herself and said if you look at the mammogram alone it's not alarming. But when you see the MRI and then look at the mammogram you can see it. She thinks it's DCIS and said there could be a small amount of invasive in there. The area is too big to do another lumpectomy so she's recommending a mastectomy.
I'm considering a double because it can still come back in the left side and since I have to have the right side removed, I may as well do both and hopefully be out from under this Cancer Cloud!! It's been very difficult thinking about losing my "girls". They have been with me 50 years and I didn't think I'd feel so sad about saying goodbye to them. Going into the OR in a couple weeks is going to be the hardest trip I've ever made so far. But, it's more important to bring my risks for the cancer coming back to as close to zero as I can get.
So with that said, I was hoping some of you could share your stories with me about mastectomies and your experiences. Did you have reconstruction? Are you happy with your decision? Do you have regrets? I thought I wanted to do reconstruction but after meeting with the plastic surgeon I am really scared about the complications so I'm sitting on the fence.
So many decisions to make and I never thought this is where I'd be less than a year after the first diagnosis on the other side. Thank you for reading this and in advance for anything you can share. Have a blessed day. 🙂