I’m sure I’ll still have some wobbles and there are some small risks as with any op but feel so much better about it all already it’s amazing! The waiting and worrying and not knowing is just so draining as you say.
Thanks again x
Thanks so much for the update, especially as you must be shattered after spending all afternoon there. I'm so glad to read that you have a plan and as a result you feel so much better. The uncertainty and waiting is hard, and I have no idea why doctors think we can make decisions when our heads are just reeling with info and the shock of the diagnosis. Your plan sounds good and I'm impressed that you get nipples thrown in too! I haven't got round to looking into that yet, I always intended to..... You really will adjust to your new normal after the operation.
As you say, the best plan for now is to park the thought of the operation and to focus on your fun holiday.
All the very best to you.
Thanks so much for remembering me and asking! I didn’t get out until after 7pm (appt was meant to be at 3:30!) but spent almost an hour with my surgeon and we now have a plan!
Skin preserving mastectomy and first stage lymph node removal with immediate pre-pectoral implant (yay!) Initially filled with saline which after wound is healed is expanded by pumping up at the clinic every couple of weeks. When the right size, remove it and replace with permanent silicon implant. They will then do any augmentation to other side in the same op if needed. I get a cast of my nipple taken and a replica stick on one made (that I doubt I’ll use but you get it anyway so why not?) but also a 3D tattoo once all is properly healed up. I’m too skinny for the DIEP flap too (which I thought I would be) so that is not an option after all. Plan is another appt on 14th May to run over it all again and take measurements etc, then op on 3rd June. Feel so much better now, can just have April and my holiday with no more decisions or appointments, phew!
Thanks so much for your support!
I hope you had a useful meeting with your surgeon today and got some questions answered.
It doesn't sound at all silly saying that you don't want your favourite breast has to go. It's a loss of part of your body and it takes time to come to terms with. I decided against having surgery to my remaining breast to even them up as I had had enough of surgery/procedures, but again it's a very personal decision.
Happy to answer any questions any time if it helps, and wish you every strength for your surgery and a quick recovery.
I don’t believe I will need RT but that is one of my questions for tomorrow which will no doubt have a bearing on my decision. I will ask about your implant option thank you. As it is not invasive cancer yet I’m hopeful (and it was implied) that this op would be it. Mind you, I’ve been told that twice before so am a bit skeptical.
I think I might not have enough body fat for a DIEP and expect my surgeon to answer this for me too tomorrow, but it was given to me as an option week before last. I have been told by others that you can have work on the other breast too to even them up (another question!) Sounds stupid but my left (that has to go) is my favourite (slightly bigger, firmer, better shape), so the thought of ending up with two ‘rights’ is also getting me down.
Just hope that tomorrow my surgeon will be able to guide me a bit based on my condition and body type.
I will let you know how it goes. Thanks for your support x
First of all a big hug to you as you go through all this and have to try to make decisions. So sorry to read that you now have to have a mastectomy. But please do not think that you are a “fraud” in any way, you are absolutely not. This is a place where we can all share concerns/questions and experiences, no matter what diagnosis.
I wanted to share my experience briefly before you meet your surgeon tomorrow in case that helps you at all. I am the same age as you, same cup size, a tiny bit shorter and a tiny bit lighter, so our experiences may be similar. I had a mastectomy in May 2017 and an immediate recon with an implant. I had chemo and radiotherapy too. I didn’t have enough fat for a tissue recon but I wanted an implant because of the shorter surgery and quicker recovery. I believe tissue recons look more natural than implants, but I’m happy enough with mine. It doesn’t match the other one, but I’m glad to have something. I use a prosthesis on my real boob to even things up a bit and in clothes you can’t tell there is any difference. Almost 2 years on I would still say I made the right decision for me. It is a very personal decision though and many ladies choose to stay flat, there are plenty of support groups for people who choose that option.
My implant is called a “pre-pectoral” implant, which means it sits on top of the muscle rather than underneath it. This is a relatively new surgery, implants always used to go under the muscle. Mine sits in a sort of sling thing, called Braxon (I believe). If you do go down the implant route it is worth asking your surgeon about this option as again I think it gives a slightly quicker recovery time.
I don’t know if you have to have radiotherapy too after surgery, but many surgeons warn of the risk of “capsular contracture” with an implant if you have to have radio and therefore won’t put in an implant. This means a hardening of the scar tissue around the implant. However, I think the Braxon sling helps to cut the risk of this contracture.
I said I’d be brief but this has turned into a bit of an essay, sorry, but hope it helps a little. I wish you all the best and am very happy to answer more questions on here or via private message if you prefer.
Hugs, Evie xx
I had 2 excisions for high grade DCIS in Jan and Feb and was devasted 2 weeks ago to find out that I still have margins and now need a full mastectomy.
I have read the books and looked at the photos, but was counting on a reconstruction support meeting tonight to meet ladies who have been through this to get some real insight into which way I decide to go - no recon, delayed recon or immediate recon, and which type (implant or DIEP flap). Arrived at the meeting venue to be told it was cancelled. Absolutely gutted. I have appt with my surgeon tomorrow and a list of questions as long as my arm. She has been away and it was someone else who broke the news so I was left for 2 weeks with a booklet to read to make a decision after she’s answered any questions I have tomorrow.
Can anyone please give me any advice on which recon might be best for me? I am 50, about 5’6” and not big breasted (large B or small C cup), weight about 9 stone. I was leaning towards implant as not sure I’m up for the more invasive DIEP, but change my mind daily at the moment. Can anyone tell me why/how they chose one over the other and if it was the right choice for them in the end and why? I work full time and although I need to be back to work as soon as I can, I also want to do what’s best for me. I have been in emotional turmoil since November and don’t even have invasive cancer so feel a bit like a fraud which actually doesn’t help.
Thank you x