I had a single mastectomy in February 2018. I noted that the scar itself appeared very tight, however I felt as though there was a tight band all the way around my chest. I likened it to feeling as though I was wearing a bra that was way too tight, all the time. I slept propped up on 5 pillows because I couldn't lie down and breathe at the same time. I couldn't lean back in my chair because then I couldn't breathe. Doctors and nurses appeared to have no idea what was happening. This went on for 3 months. I thought to myself, this is impossible - they only cut my breast and removed lymph nodes from the same side armpit. They didn't touch the other side or my back, so what could be happening? Then it occurred to me that when you get appendicitis, the pain is initially in the centre of the stomach, near the navel; my brother was diagnosed with heart disease from a pain in his shoulder!! So, I thought, it's my brain that's causing the problem, identifying the tightness of my new scar with something it was already familiar with - a too tight bra. So, the problem could only be solved by convincing my brain that the tightness was only in the scar and not all the way around. I did that by telling myself (my brain) that it was wrong and only the scar was tight. I did this many, many times and reduced my number of pillows by one every couple of nights. Within 2 weeks, the tight bra sensation was gone and has not returned.
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