Come join others currently navigating treatment in our weekly Zoom Meetup! Register here: Tuesdays, 1pm ET.
Fill Out Your Profile to share more about you. Learn more...

Mastectomy Sept 2011

Options
13468957

Comments

  • groovygirls
    groovygirls Member Posts: 100
    Options

    Oh Olgah- I am so happy you are okay...

    Things work in really strange ways- I took all the grovvy girls and myself for some much needed haircuts today "can we get feathers"- sure, " can we get purple highlights"- sure...

    I started to cry- after 9/12 things will not be the same. Who was getting their hair cut next to me- the breast cancer coordinator! We gave each other a big hug and she reassured me that it will be okay and we will get thru this.

  • exbrnxgrl
    exbrnxgrl Member Posts: 5,062
    Options

    Olgah, So glad you did well. Continued prayers and good wishes for healing. -Caryn

  • exbrnxgrl
    exbrnxgrl Member Posts: 5,062
    Options

    Groovygirls, Your post made me smile. I went for my pre-surgery cut/color (gray hair? What gray hair?)today. Telling my hairdresser about my breast cancer was hard but I think she was the last person with whom I have a long-term relationship with that I hadn't told. I am having some anxiety (wish I could just run away from this) especially when I have time by myself. When I talk to others I feel braver and can seem very positive and confident. I wish this whole thing was over! -Caryn

  • rachelvk
    rachelvk Member Posts: 564
    Options

    Olgah - I'm glad your're doing well. And good luck, Groovygirls. I did indeed test positive for BRCA 2, seeing a BS for a second opinion Tuesday just to talk it over with someone else. But it's looking like a BMX, hopefully by the end of the month. Thanks to everyone who has posted, as I am feeling so much at peace with a lot of the decisions that will have to be made.

  • exbrnxgrl
    exbrnxgrl Member Posts: 5,062
    Options

    Update on something, anything, to ease anxiety over the injection for SNB (having it done afternoon before surgery). Surgeon (finally) prescribed EMLA, a numbing cream. I've had this a few times prior to IV insertion and it works really well. I think that the only reason he prescribed this is because the breast care coordinator intervened on my behalf. I had complete faith in him until this and now I am not happy. He also said that if I am this nervous about the dye injection he has concerns over how I will do with the IV insertion. How will I do? Poorly unless I use the EMLA cream! I am unhappy with his response to my anxieties over needle sticks and the way he seems to be trivializing them. I don't care if I am the first patient he has had who has these fears (which I'm sure I'm not), they are real fears to me. I plan to use the EMLA prior to the dye injection and then bring it with me (in original box with HIS prescription) on the morning of surgery to use prior to IV insertion.BTW, I will have my daughter's future mother in law with me on surgery day. She is a nurse at Kaiser (different facility then where I will be) and I know she will advocate for me. -Caryn

  • odie16
    odie16 Member Posts: 1,415
    Options

    Olgah34 - Glad you're home & doing well. Thanks for the update.

    Robo47- Thanks for sharing. Really helps those of us coming up on the big day.

    Best of luck to the ladies having surgery this week. I will say a prayer for each of you.. 

    Sending hugs to all.......

  • olgah34
    olgah34 Member Posts: 300
    Options

    Good morning, dear ladies!

    I try to take my meds every 4 hours , like prescribed, and it makes it easier.Just not to take it on empty stomach. What really bothers me now is itching everywhere, I cannot take shower yet, but I can clean myself with wet cloth.We bought a wedge and it is really helpful, Bath and Beyond sells it for $29,99 and it is cofortable to sleep on. Just cannot stand up from it yet, need a help from my husband. Sorry for my English, I am originally from Lithuania.(:But it is easy to lay down.I try NOT TO LOOK at my chest and not to think about it. I asked Plastic Surgeon to show me pictures of implants, he had a nice album , with pictures taken from the beginning of reconstruction till the end...In the end it looked really nice!  I try to be positive and think about nice results.

    Ladies, don't cry, it will be emotionally easy after operation, believe me!

    pray for all of you... Olga

  • Wow - been only able to glance at the site the last day or so and SO MUCH has happened here. So excited (well, is that the word?) to see newbies, and Olga, awesome to hear from you and to hear that you're doing well. Phew! You are a pioneer for our group here, friend. I love the last sentence of your post this a.m. - I had a complete meltdown night before last. By myself, in bed (husband up watching t.v. downstairs). Total pity-party, "I don't wanna go!" kind of thing. But I did remember that once I just DO IT, the emotional stuff should get better - and now you're telling me the same thing. Hooray! For now, I have Ativan.

    Caryn - well thank goodness he prescribed Emla. Sounds like he's being a jerk though. I don't love my PS, but keep telling myself that I don't need a friend, I need a good surgeon. That's great that your daughter's future MIL will be w/you in the a.m. - you'll have so much on your mind and she can keep an eye out for you. Sheesh. Slather on that Emla and give him a SMILE.

    All - thanks to those who've checked in w/experiences, etc. We are rolling forward w/a new wave of women going in each week now . . . I was saying to my husband yesterday - although my date is getting closer and I'm feeling so ready to go, I also feel the pressure getting intensified. A couple times the past few days I want to jump out of my skin! For me, working out helps a lot. Felt a lot more mellow after 1 hour of spin class yesterday!

    Big (but gentle, Olga) hugs to all.

    Sarah 

  • mags20487
    mags20487 Member Posts: 1,092
    Options

    I am11 days past my bmx now and feeling much better.  I did the pity party alone as well.  Funny how I cry so much more when alone than with others.  Went shopping yesterday with a friend and found these adorable head covers really cheap so got 1 in each color I liked.  Cried at the checkout when paying for them as the reality set in that I really will be bald.  Anxious to get on with the treatment plan...Tuesday is first ONC meeting.  Guess the little red devil is in my near future.  Wish you all well for this phase of your journey...getting easier to look at the scar in the mirror...starting to look really good as it heals.

    Maggie

  • exbrnxgrl
    exbrnxgrl Member Posts: 5,062
    Options

    Olga, It is so encouraging and inspiring to read your update. Don't apologize for your English. You should hear my Lithuanian. Oh, wait a minute, I don't know a word of Lithuanian! Seriously,I teach first grade now but used to teach ESL. Writing in a second language is not easy and you are doing very well. I think I mentioned that I was given a guided imagery CD to help with surgery and recovery. Although I think it is a good idea and worth a try, I can't get in to it. The speakers voice is so soft and well modulated and her articulation is so precise that it sounds like she is addressing a very small child or someone who is not too bright. I was supposed to listen to it twice a day but it just doesn't float my boat, as they used to say!
    Sarah, I have been pretty lax about exercise since school started but I intend to hit the gym this morning. I agree that it helps. -Caryn >Diagnosis: 7/8/2011, DCIS, Stage I, Grade 1, ER+/PR+

  • dancetrancer
    dancetrancer Member Posts: 2,461
    Options

    Olgah, 

    Your comment about itching everywhere caught my attention.  I had slight itching when I took Lortab, but really, really bad itching all over my body (even my head!) when I took oxycodone/Percoset.  I did some research on it and found out itching is a common side effect with opiate drugs (it can be an allergic reaction, too, but that would be more severe with difficulty breathing, throat swelling, etc.).  Either way, I'd talk to your doc about it.  Apparently they can prescribe an antihistamine which will help.  

    http://www.ehow.com/how-does_5481160_oxycodone-make-head-itch.html 

  • exbrnxgrl
    exbrnxgrl Member Posts: 5,062
    Options

    Benadryl is an antihistamine often used to stop the itching. You can buy it OTC but check with your doctor,of course, before taking it. -Caryn

  • stjude10
    stjude10 Member Posts: 230
    Options

    fredntan- I'm pretty new here, and I still have to look up what some abbreviations mean. It took 3 weeks to get my brca test back, so try to be patient. I was told 2, but it took longer. My surgery is the day before yours, so good luck to us both! Will touch base with you to see how you're doing after.

  • stjude10
    stjude10 Member Posts: 230
    Options

    olga-glad to hear from you and that you're recovering well. You're giving me a lot of hope and inspiration that I'll be on here checking in w/you gals shortly after my surgery. thank you for that

    caryn-sorry, but your dr. sounds like a douche! glad you finally got something to ease the pain, and hopefully you'll get something to relax you as much as you need. keep harping if you have to!

  • exbrnxgrl
    exbrnxgrl Member Posts: 5,062
    Options

    Yes, I am very disappointed because up until bringing up my needle anxiety issue, I felt very comfortable with him. -Caryn

  • stjude10
    stjude10 Member Posts: 230
    Options

    caryn, my pre-op nurse told me to request all consent forms be signed as soon as i get there, that way i can keep requesting meds for anxiety, and possibly make me incredibly relaxed before anything starts. right on! maybe you could try that.

  • Linda-n3
    Linda-n3 Member Posts: 1,713
    Options

    Glad to hear many of you doing well.  I am hanging in there, quite brave to all who see me, but know the anxiety will take over about a week before the procedure.  I also have been there with the single pity-party, feeling very alone, so it is nice to come here where you are understood.  Others love us, but those who are here also understand at a deeper level.

    I have a friend who called me today who just went through mastectomy a couple of months ago.  She was initially supposed to just have lumpectomy, but ended up doing mastectomy.  She said the BS did the SNL AFTER she was asleep, DURING surgery.  She also said that the muscle relaxants worked better for her than the pain meds, they both made her a bit groggy, but the tight feeling from the surgery was better with the muscle relaxants.  She was very positive about her whole experience, and helped me a lot to see that fear can really do a number on us.  But we also have to have confidence in our surgeons, and she had one of the best in the area (I have one of the best, according to many, but in a different hospital system, so can't get the one my friend had).

    So Caryn, do you have options to change surgeons?  I know it is late, and time seems to be so compressed, but I now realize that it is important to have a team who is sensitive to your fears.  I got a new PCP a couple of weeks ago because my original PCP made my anxiety worse rather than better; I hate to switch horses in mid-stream, but I am truly dealing with recurrence MUCH better than the initial diagnosis a year ago because of my new PCP. And it never hurts to ask for a second opinion.

    Also, a really good anesthesiologist will use some numbing before inserting an IV.

    Prayers for courage for you all!

    Linda

  • babycakes82
    babycakes82 Member Posts: 11
    Options
    Hello my sisters!  I am having Bilateral Mastectomy/TE"S on Wednesday, September 7th at UAB in Birmingham, Alabama. I am totally confident in my decision and I am looking forward to getting back to my "normal".   I had quite a few surgeries over the last 5 years and this one makes me more nervous.  I am glad I didn't have too much time I had to wait.  I am wishing all of you quick recoveries and no complications.  I have a grandbaby coming in December, so I will do anything they tell me to be well by then!Smile What a blessing it will be!   My hubby took me on a shopping spree yesterday to my surprise.  Seems like us mommies usually do for others instead of ourselves, so it was so much fun.  I have been working hard since December on losing weight and I have lost 35 pounds!  Only 10 more pounds to go, so now I don't have to worry about having things to wear once it starts getting cooler. That is one thing off my mind!  How blessed I am. 
  • exbrnxgrl
    exbrnxgrl Member Posts: 5,062
    Options

    Hi Linda,

    I could cancel and switch surgeons but that would create a delay of several more weeks. I had my biopsies in early July, so it's already been two months since my diagnosis. If iI have to put it off any longer I would become even more stressed. The actual SNB will be done when I am under general anaesthesia, it's just the injection that I am having the afternoon before surgery. Anyway, I have the EMLA cream now, so all should be well. I'll bring the tube of EMLA with me on the day of the surgery and get the nurses to determine where they'll insert the IV as soon as I get there so I can apply EMLA to that site too. I've used this for IV insertion before and it works like a charm.I will also have my own personal nurse (daughter's future MIL) who has worked for Kaiser for 20+ years and will be my advocate. -Caryn

  • dancetrancer
    dancetrancer Member Posts: 2,461
    Options

    n3ypb wrote:
    Glad to hear many of you doing well. I am hanging in there, quite brave to all who see me, but know the anxiety will take over about a week before the procedure. I also have been there with the single pity-party, feeling very alone, so it is nice to come here where you are understood. Others love us, but those who are here also understand at a deeper level.

    I have the exact same feelings.  Seems like I rarely break down, but when I do, it's when I'm alone - driving the car (not good, LOL!) or laying down to go to sleep.

    babycakes82 wrote:
    Hello my sisters! I am having Bilateral Mastectomy/TE"S on Wednesday, September 7th at UAB in Birmingham, Alabama
    .

    Hello from another Bama girl!  UAB is great, isn't it?  They are so thorough.  Even though they won't be doing my surgery (I've decided to go to Miami for my recon), they will be following my care and doing the second opinion on my pathology after my mast there.  You are definitely in good hands at UAB. Smile 

  • exbrnxgrl
    exbrnxgrl Member Posts: 5,062
    Options

    Time to laugh. I wrote previously about the guided imagery CD and how it was just not my thing. Decided to give it a second chance today. Listening to the affirmations sections they said, " Guardian angels, magical friends and allies..." I almost fell off the couch due to hysterical laughing. Magical friends ????? Who would these be? Unicorns? Harry Potter? Glinda the good witch? Since I crack up every time I think about it, maybe the CD is not so bad after all! Caryn

  • sdmeyers88
    sdmeyers88 Member Posts: 1
    Options

    Shelley 9/8

  • Lady-di
    Lady-di Member Posts: 74
    Options

    Welcome Shelley, (not sure if thats the right word to use)

    I have spent hours reading on this site and think that without it I would probably go crazy.

    Surgery is tomorrow for me and have spent this weekend trying to get prepared. Lots of shopping and cleaning. For me I think right now I had focused so much on the fact that I'm loosing my breast that I've forgotten that im fighting cancer. A calmness has come over me now but I think I'll probably start freaking out again soon. (this is one ride that you just can't get off of)



    Olgah- thanks so much for the update and glad you are doing well



  • olgah34
    olgah34 Member Posts: 300
    Options

    Good morning

    Today is day 4 after my BMX. I am still sleeping in sitting position with a wedge, but last night I did not take any pain medicine after 11 p.m. I did it also because I had constipation , side effect of Hydrocone. I used some laxatives, and, thanks God it worked today.Tomorrow I am calling my PS about drains. I am very nervous about drains removal, I 've heard stories about how painful it is. I never look at drains, while my husband squeezes it, I am sensitive, better not to look at it.It does not hurt, though.So far I don't feel pain, just little one and kind of tired. I need to be healthy, because we have my grandson's baptizm this Saturday. I hope I will be able to participate. I start my chemo September 15, have no idea how it works with rekonstruction visits?

  • Lady-di
    Lady-di Member Posts: 74
    Options

    Chefmom- I wish you good luck tomorrow and know that I'll be thinking of you.



    We are all in this together and it's nice knowing you are all here



    HUGS TO ALL

  • mags20487
    mags20487 Member Posts: 1,092
    Options

    Olgah...I had 2 of my drains out last wed and the other 2 last friday.  no pain for me just an odd sensation when pulled out.  I had the nurse count down for me and I took a deep breathe and then blew it out when she took them out. I also had a good tight grip on my husband's hand as I was anticipating the worst. Feels so much better as soon as they are gone!

    Maggie

  • odie16
    odie16 Member Posts: 1,415
    Options

    Diana123 & Chefmom -

    Will be thinking of you tomorrow and praying for a speedy recovery. 

    So glad we have this site to share & support each other..... Gentle hugs to all...... 

  • exbrnxgrl
    exbrnxgrl Member Posts: 5,062
    Options

    Good luck to the Tuesday, 9/6 girls from one of the the Wednesday 9/7 girls!

    -Caryn

  • olgah34
    olgah34 Member Posts: 300
    Options

    Thank you, Maggie...

    Diana 123 and Chefmom, I will be thinking of you and pray for you...I asked to be sedated before operation, it helped me ,it was really Happy pill (: And also all the surgical team was very very supportive, they keep coming one aftyer another, ask you questions, so no time to think about anything...

    wish you good luck and speady recovery!!!

  • dancetrancer
    dancetrancer Member Posts: 2,461
    Options

    Best wishes diana123, chefmom, exbrnxgrl, and stjude10!   Wishing you peace and courage as you take the next big step in fighting this beast!