Hi Anne - I had the exchange surgery last Monday and I can't tell you how glad I am to have got rid of the tissue expander.
This new implant feels and looks so much better already and I'm getting better sleep as i'm not in as much discomfort.
There is still a big dent and some puckering- I go back to see consultant on 26th Sept so will see if they intend to do anything about it.
I saw my breast surgeon on Tuesday and she is quite happy with how it's healing up but does get my point about the wrinkling and creasing. She still thinks it will settle down and has told me to massage the scar to try to break down the tissue, but will see me in 3 months time. The only option seems to be some sort of lipo thing (sorry don't remember correct term!) but for that I'd need to put on some weight as I don't have anything to spare at the moment for them to use! As the days have gone on I suppose I'm just accepting it more and I think it unlikely I will go for more surgery, I at least have a breast shape to put in a bra and have a bit of cleavage so it's not all bad. Any news on your date yet? I'm Oxfordshire by the way, Anne xx
Hi Annie - how did you get on today?
I'm much the same age as you - 63 next month.
When I was first diagnosed last August and told I would have to have a mastectomy the surgeon went to great lengths to tell me all they could do for me - reconstruction, new nipple, tattoo on the new nipple, and uplift of my left breast for symmetry.
At my last consult in February this year it all seemed a different story - when I mentioned about the up lift of the left breast she looked surprised and said 'do you want that doing?', then said we'd re visit it when my right breast was 'sorted'.
I did want the uplift procedure to be honest - but now waiting so long to get the expander exchanged I might change my mind - as all the waiting is so stressful.
Love, Helen. xxx
No, don't think I'll bother with nipple or surgery on other breast, I might have done it if I was younger but I'm nearly 64 so not that important, all I really wanted from reconstruction was to have some shape, it's just I've not quite got the shape I wanted! I'll let you know how things go on Tuesday xx
Hi Annie, thanks for getting back to me.
I really hope when you go to your appointment this week they can suggest 'something' to fix the wrinkles - I'm pretty sure there will be something that can be done.
I can't believe that someone has had to wait 2 years for the exchange of implant - I'll go insane if I have to wait that long - my surgeon had said it would be done in April - but she didn't which year.🤦♀️
Where are based?
Are you thinking of having a nipple reconstructed and anything done with your right breast?
I was thinking of having both done but by the time they get round to doing anything I might have given up the will.🤣
Take care and good luck for Tuesday - let us know how you get on.
Love, Helen. xxx
I was diagnosed in April 2018 and had left sided mastectomy in June. I had tissue expander put in at the same time and they started fill-ups quite quickly as they thought I would need chemo, as they found a couple of positive nodes. Fortunately Oncotype score was ok so no chemo but started radiotherapy quite soon after. Was told it would be at least 7 months before I got my silicone implant, I thought this was from when the surgery was done but found out it was from the end of radiotherapy. I was never comfortable with the expander and after radiotherapy it got even worse to the point where I contemplated having it taken out. It was very hard and felt like it was sticking in my ribs all the time, but can't say I had swelling or lumpiness like you have. Just felt like I couldn't breathe it was so tight. I phoned my breast nurse early 2019 and after several weeks she referred me back to the surgeon. I got my appointment with her in April and was done in June. I was really surprised that the lady in the next bed to me on the day of my surgery had waited nearly 2 years as she had been told there was a waiting list! Felt like I'd jumped the queue but I suppose it's just because I'd pushed for it. I feel a little better about it this week, it's not quite as painful and I'm getting used to the size, but still not happy about deep wrinkly skin around scar. I see BS on Tuesday so may get some answers. Good luck, hope you hear soon xx
Hi - I'm so sorry you're disappointed with the exchange surgery.
I wonder if I could 'pick' your brains - I was diagnosed with breast cancer last August and had a right sided mastectomy on 24th September last year and had a temporary skin expander implant inserted. I had to go for regular 'fills' to get it to the right size.
I had my last 'fill' in November last year and had to wait 3 months for things to settle down. I went back to see the consultant in February and she put me on her list to have the exchange form the skin expander to a softer more natural silicon implant and was told it would probably be April when this would be done.
We're now nearly into July and I'm still waiting on a date for the op. I've phoned a few times but there's always a reason why they can't fit me in! Its driving me crazy as I feel the skin expander is very hard and heavy and there seems to be some swelling over the top of it recently and it's becoming quite painful.
I was wondering if this was the treatment you had and if it was how long did you wait for the exchange to be done, and did you have any swelling and pain with the skin expander?
Mine at the moment is hard, lumpy and sore and out of shape - hoping when I do get the exchange it looks and feels better than it is at the moment. Thanks for reading.🥰
Had my expander exchange surgery last week and feel quite disappointed with the result at this stage. BS couldn't get the expected size of implant in so it looks quite small, but the worst thing is the big wrinkles in the skin where the scar is. There is still a bit of glue on it so hopefully when that comes off it'll feel better and BS says that when it's healed up I will be able to massage it, but can't see how that's going to help. Its smaller than the other one so don't know how to go about getting fitted for a bra either. I know I'll probably feel better when I've got used to, its all about 'managing expectations!'