Thought I would start this thread as I am having my TM op on Wednesday all being well. Having another blood test tomorrow as my neutrophils and white blood cells were too low for surgery when I had blood test yesterday. No surprise really as that's happened the last 3 cycles of chemo. I have grade 3 invasive ductal carcinoma which is ER positive and HER2 negative.
I am missing work so much I was really excited to be asked a dental question! I would leave it til your third week to see the dentist and hygienist as your neutrophils should be picking up by then. I am assuming you are having three weekly chemo? Your hygienist will probably err on the side of caution and not do too traumatic scaling, but your mouth should feel better after a hygienist session.
Regarding the saltiness, it is difficult. If you have sugar free gum, which promotes saliva, this may help. I have read that lemon juice can counteract saltiness, but obviously in moderation, as it can cause erosion, which could result in sensitivity. Good luck with the chemo.
Hi when I had my mammoplasty they removed nodes via incisions in the breast so I dont have any wounds under the arm and have full use of my arm. Does anyone know if I should still do the exercises as I havent been doing them because I am using my arm normally? I thought they were to stop you getting a frozen shoulder but now I not sure
I just did a bit of research on uk websites and it did state 6-12 months after. I would rather sooner than later. I still haven't looked at the surgical site yet, and it is a big dread. But I have read other threads where women have felt exactly the same. So the sooner I have a breast shape, the better.
Love Jane xx
I was told that if I don't have radiotherapy I have to wait three months for healing, and if I do have radiotherapy then it is a year's wait because of the effects on the skin. I thought the timescale was due to medical reasons rather than the fact that I am being treated on the NHS. They did not mention that timescales would be different privately. Do you think they would be? Does anyone else know? That is something I would ask but it never crossed my mind to be honest. Even regarding the radiotherapy- I was disappointed that one surgeon said I would only have it if there was cancer in my lymph nodes, the second said it was in my treatment plan due to the initial size of the tumour so I would be having it, and my mastectomy surgeon said I wasn't necessarily having it. So difficult when there isn't a consensus opinion. But I have always felt that the treatment I have been offered has been ultimately what is best for me, not because of how it is funded. But reconstruction is an elective procedure so maybe timescales are different? Thank you for that suggestion.
Hey Linda. Fab news!!! So pleased for you. I get my results on 15th November. Hoping for good news too.
Regarding my future plans, I have been told I will probably have radiotherapy ( due to the size of the invasive tumour initially , even though it had disappeared after chemo) so I couldn't have immediate reconstruction. I will have to wait a year they said. One surgeon suggested I could have an implant, another said I couldn't as my skin won't stretch to accommodate one after radiotherapy, but a third surgeon who carried out my mastectomy yesterday said it would be possible. So I don't know! If I have a flap reconstruction I can't use my back as this could affect my arm and I am a dentist so this could affect my dexterity, and I am quite skinny so they said they don't think they would be able to take it from my stomach, but they might be able to use my inner thigh or bottom. Time will tell.
Anyway, I am thrilled for you. Best wishes
Thank you for your encouraging words. It really helps to read stories from other women going through similar procedures and feeling the same. I realise I have to put it in prospective. It is life saving which is more important than the cosmetic appearance. As women, it is such a cruel disease though, isn't it, and we have so much to come to terms with. I hope you will be even happier when you get your final implant.
With best wishes
Thank you Loolarch. Your daughter's comment to ' man up' made me smile. To be honest, after managing pretty well on six rounds of chemo ( other than the first one when I got neutropenic sepsis), I shouldn't really be too fazed about something which is cosmetic really. I think it's just that it feels so mutilating. But hopefully there is a neat scar under the dressing. I will find out when I have to take the dressing off in three days. Good luck with any more treatment you may have.Love Jane xx
I had a right sided mastectomy and SNB on 24th September - like you I didn't want to look at the site.
I had a drain in and a dressing covering it so didn't 'have' to look at it at first.
The drain and dressing came off 10 days after the op - and I plucked up the courage to look at.
As I'd had a tissue expander reconstruction at the same time as surgery it wasn't too bad, as I had some shape to my breast.
There was some purple glue stuff on the wound which made it look worse, I think.
Anyway, 6 weeks down the line I'm used to it and the purple glue has now gone and the scar looks quite 'neat' - except for some puckering by my armpit - the surgeon has said she'll sort that out when I have the tempoary expander exchanged with the permanant silicone one.
You're doing well if you're managing on paracetemol and ibuprofen.
Keep doing the excerises.
Glad to hear you are doing well!
I had a bilateral Mx in July, and like you I was very reluctant to look at the scars, in fact even thinking about it made me tearful. I am told this is very common. After a few days, my daughter (adult) asked to look, and she persuaded me that it looked absolutely fine, the main thing was that my cancer had been removed, and told me to "man up"! I took her advice, and it was far better than I expected, my surgeons(s) did a very neat job.
I did the exercises regularly, and have been fine, other than some tightness across the scar and armpits, but exercises and physio have helped.
all the best for your recovery x
Well, I had masectomy of left breast and sentinel node biopsy yesterday. I was booked in at 12.30pm and was supposed to have operation at 3.30pm but the first operation must have been more complex than anticipated,as I didn't go in til 5.30pm. I was incredibly upset all morning and very tearful when I arrived at the day surgery unit. However, by the time I walked to the theatre I felt very drained and tired and more resigned to it.
I was able to come home last night ( after 10pm) and had a really good night's sleep.My husband had got me one of the heart shaped pillows and I felt very comfortable. I have been wearing a soft sports-type bra with my knitted knocker and I look very symmetrical. However I haven't dared look at the surgical site.Any tips on this? I expect it is something you get used to? I am just taking paracetemol and ibuprofen so far, and I am in surprisingly little pain, just a bit sore. I did the exercises this morning and that was fine.
Good luck to everyone else with their results/ surgery.
So - here's the question (and story) I asked the nurses on here after my patholigy report appt. If anyone has any advice that'd be great! 🙂
"I had surgery 2 weeks ago to remove an area of high grade DCIS. At the same time, another area - when biopsied was reckoned to be benign - was also removed. It turns out (results today) that both areas are high grade DCIS with comedo necrosis and malignant calcification. A third area was also biopsied after an ultrasound, but was apparently also benign when tested so was not removed during the surgery.
I had an area of invasive breast cancer removed from the other breast 3 years ago and had follow-up radiotherapy and take Letrozole tablets.
Anyway, my question is, if it had been known that there was more than one area of high grade DCIS before surgery, would I have been advised to have had a mastecomy? I've been offered radiotherapy follow-up but have an appointment next week with the surgeon to discuss things.
Sorry if it sounds complicated!"
Thank you daisydi. I can really imagine my weeping in the operating theatre too. Glad your operation went well. I hope I will feel the same relief after surgery as you do. This time tomorrow I should be home and it will be over.
Oh and good luck Janie. I was terrified of surgery and was still weeping in the operating theatre but its all done now. Hope all goes well for you xx
Just got home after my mammoplasty. They took lymph nodes through the same incision so no wound in armpit which I am relieved about. Got a nice corset over my boob. Bit sore but so relieved surgery over. Now the waiting game begins ...
Thank you for your post. You sound very upbeat. I am sorry you have to go for more surgery on the other side. I hope I end up with a moob! It won't be as traumatic as just completely flat. I do have my knitted knocker ready. I am just dreading looking at my new form after the operation. It is just a case of adjusting I guess. Every time I think about the operation my stomach does a flip. It is at 12.30pm tomorrow. But I must think, they are excising the cancer and, if nothing is found in the lymph nodes, I will be cancer-free.
Thank you for your good wishes. Although I have a wonderful family and lots of lovely friends, I only have one close friend who has had a mastectomy, and she was totally traumatised by it. I do offload on family and friends but you lovely ladies know EXACTLY how I feel and your messages mean so much.
Love Jane xxx
I had a mastectomy 6 weeks ago, going for another one in 2 weeks (found cancer in the other side!). It was actually fine. Your chest won't be completely flat, I joke I have a moob. There was surprisingly little pain, apart from a feeling of gravel rash in my upper arm which disappeared after 3 weeks. I'm not having any reconstruction and plan to stay flat.
Thank you for your post. It really helps to hear from other ladies who have gone through it. Your reassuring words have certainly reduced my anxiety.
Regarding chemo, I can reassure you that the nurses are fabulous at giving medication to counteract the symptoms, so I actually found the chemo became easier at each cycle. Do let the nurses know early on about your symptoms. They can get you started on the medication early so things don't get too bad. Best of luck to you for your next stage of treatment.
I am having a mastectomy of my left breast this coming Wednesday. I was intially told that I would probably be offered lumpectomy and radiation or a mastectomy. I deliberated over the best option, only to be told that due to the large area of dcis mastectomy is the only option. I was also told that if there was no remaining tumour in the breast , and the four lymph nodes that they will remove are clear, I wouldn't need any radiotherapy. However I have met with another surgeon since the appointment, who tells me that it has already been decided that I will have radiotherapy due to the initial size of the invasive tumour ( 5cm) ( which has since disappeared after six cycles of chemotherapy ).
So, it has all been quite traumatic, and I do feel traumatised about the coming operation ( though the ladies on this forum have been very supportive). I am so worried about coming round from the operation with no breast or nipple, just flat tissue. They can't do a temporary implant due to the risks with the subsequent radiotherapy. I do have a knitted knocker ready but I just wish it was all over, with a reconstructed breast and no radiotherapy. But all you ladies are going through the same and seem so strong. I was strong through chemo after a terrible start, when I ended up in hospital with neutropenic sepsis, but I am not feeling strong now.
My surgery is tomorrow. Really scared now but in some way relieved that it is happening so the nasty little bugger can be taken away. Will let you know how I get on .....
Thank you magsv for welcoming me!
Linda friends have told me to take arnica to reduce bruising and help healing but professionals have told me not to as it may interfere with clotting. Think I will prob not take it. As far as I can find out a batwing mammoplasty enables the surgeon to remove the tumour as well as a lot of breast tissue as I have large breasts and the surgery involves incisions resembling batwings and then relocating other breast tissue to fill the gap. Apparently the breast reduction is better for radiotherapy treatment. I wont know about any chemo until they have checked lymph nodes. He did offer to do other side at a later date but will see what happens. I just want to get through the surgery and onto the next stage. My first trip to the hospital and core biopsy was on 4th October so it has all happened really quickly and my head is all over the place. I am in Norfolk.
Yes Linda, I have faith in my surgeon as well. I was so pleased to learn that it was going to be the same one who operated on the other side 3 years ago. He managed to get clear margins then - so hopefully it'll be the same this time.
I am a wee bit concerned about whether or not I'll be having radiotherapy this time - I actually hope I am as I've had clear mammograms on the left breast after having had this before, so hoping it'll work the same magic on the other one this time 🙂
It must be difficult having elderly parents and family members living very far away to consider when going through this. A concern I've had is two of three sons moving house during all this and I'd normally be totally available for grandchildren duties. One lives locally, so just had to fit duties in around appointments and surgery. The other one is in Manchester (we're central Scotland) and they moved this week - the school holidays there. Normally I'd have offered to go down and bring the grandchildren here to give them space to get organised, but had to leave them to it.
We're going down for a quick visit after the results on Wednesday though - thought I'd fit that in before possible daily radiotherapy treatments start. x
I'm sorry I can't help with your questions as haven't had experience of either mammoplasty or arnica tablets - but I just wanted to welcome you to the group 🙂
Hello, can I join this group please. I have prov grade 2 ductal ca ER pos and HER neg. I am having surgery Monday and I am terrified. They are doing a batwing mammoplasty and I will end up with one boob half the size of the other. I am so scared. Has anyone else had a mammoplasty and did anyhone take arnica tablets before surgery to help with healing and bruising???
Glad your Surgery is over Linda 🙂
I was meant to get my results on Monday 29th, but appointment letter came through for Wed 31st so a slightly longer wait. I've been managing the excercises - actually have more trouble with movement on the side that was done 3 years ago - although I think there was more removed then as nipple has gone there and 3 lymph nodes rather just the two this time. I'll be sure to keep them up for as long as I remember this time, as it's benefiting both sides.
The district nurse has been twice now to check wounds and has given me prescriptions for dressings. She's going to come back on Monday and remove the steri strips - then no more need for dressing.
Fingers crossed for good results 🙂