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March 2019 Surgery Support Group

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dhbbfh1999
dhbbfh1999 Member Posts: 11

Hi everyone! I have surgery scheduled for March 12th and did not see a March group yet. I am pouring over these forum topics and want to connect with others soon. Thank you. :)

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  • TrishaFL
    TrishaFL Member Posts: 19
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    Hi Dhbbfh

    My surgery is scheduled for March 20th, having a BMX without reconstruction. Finished chemo two weeks ago and will have radiation after surgery.

    Where are you in your journey? 

  • Darnit_DDD
    Darnit_DDD Member Posts: 21
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    My dmx is March 6th, no reconstruction. It’s staring to hit me, doing pre-op Monday.

    Just so ready to be on the other side of this procedure.

    I’m sure it’s out here somewhere in a post but any good post surgical bras anyone can recommend or know where on the site that is covered.

    Best of luck to all, blessings and gratitude.

  • alto
    alto Member Posts: 82
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    I had surgery in January and woke up with a post-surgical bra given to me by my surgeon/team (the brand was Masthead Pink - comfy material, but expensive and only made to last a month or so). It has drain hoops. You may want to see if you will be put in a bra post-surgery, as it will save you some money. You really only wear it the first week or so.

    After drain was out, I found camisoles more comfortable than a bra - they don't squeeze the underarm/side area, which can be very sensitive for a few weeks. AnaOno has products with very soft material, and they work whether you stuff the pockets or go flat. I wear Amoena's pocketed camisole now, but it's a better option for those who want to use a form in the pocket vs going flat.

  • Darnit_DDD
    Darnit_DDD Member Posts: 21
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    Thanks alto, they did say I’d wake up with a post surgical bra, but I was thinking an extra might be wise, but wasn’t sure if buying anything before the surgery was a good idea as far as sizing goes, going from a DDD to flat...

    My BS said I’ll probably have the drains for 3 weeks 😳

    I appreciate the feedback and will check it out, blessings and gratitude to all on this journey

  • gawarrior
    gawarrior Member Posts: 367
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    Howdy,

    My exchange surgery is this Friday, 3/1/19. I had a BMX in October, 2018 and I am SO READY to be done with these TEs.

    I wasn't given a bra after surgery and found it too uncomfortable to wear one until the stitches came out (inframammary incisions). I used a mastectomy camisole post-surgery. You can find them on Amazon. They aren't as tight as a bra and they have pockets for the drains, plus you don't want something that's too difficult to get on (can't raise your arms above your head for awhile). I only used mine for about 3 weeks (until the drains were removed), but it was nice to have somewhere to put the drains. The camisole has pockets for breast forms if you want to wear them.


  • Darnit_DDD
    Darnit_DDD Member Posts: 21
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    Thanks for the suggestions, I bought a post mastectomy zip up bra and cami on amazon, and ordered pink pockets to augment my existing button up the front shirts. The nurse gave me a couple of lanyards as well.

    I was not sure about sizing on the bra or camisole, some seem to like it loose, others prefer a snug fit.

    It’s hard to know what size to buy, I’m so used to accommodating these large breasts, hopefully it will work out.

    If not, I’ll send the wife out to Walmart for a couple of cheap cotton bras

  • gawarrior
    gawarrior Member Posts: 367
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    Darnit_DDD, sizing is subjective, I guess. The camisole I had was loose (because you order something thinking it will fit one way, then it doesn't). But that turned out to be a good thing because of where my stitches were (under the breast right where a bra strap goes). Are you going flat? You said no reconstruction... in that case, I would think a stretchy cotton bra would work.

    This thread might help, they have some recommendations: https://community.breastcancer.org/forum/82/topics...

    Also, this website was recommended by someone in that forum: https://breastfree.org/


  • TrishaFL
    TrishaFL Member Posts: 19
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    Damit_DDD I was also
    wondering if I’d need post surgical bras with going flat. I didn’t think to ask
    my surgeon if I’d wake up in one. It is difficult to know what we’ll need/want
    on each of these steps.  I overbought
    with chemo and don’t want to do that this time. However I do want to have what
    I actually need. 

    alto thanks for the recommendations.

    GAWarrior you’re almost done with this part.  Thanks for the links, I’m going to check them
    out.

    Today I meet with my oncologist for a follow up as I’m three
    weeks out from my last chemo. Also doing all my pre-op stuff. 

    The waiting for the next step(s) is hard for me. I don’t
    feel like I’m actively doing anything to fight this cancer, but I also know my
    body needs time to recover from chemo. It’s just frustrating however it’s all
    part of the process. And I’ll do whatever I need to kick cancers ass so I can
    stick around to bug my future grandkids or grand fur babies. 

  • Darnit_DDD
    Darnit_DDD Member Posts: 21
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    Thanks alto and GAWarrior, I’m going flat and hope I only need to wear a bra during the healing period due to sensitivity in the area, but with dog ears, assuming I’lI have them, I may need to wear an undergarment until a revision procedure down the line.

    I also saw on the surgery thread to buy roll-on deodorant, what a great idea, I use a stick and can see how that would be helpful.

    Sure is a lot of great info on this site!

    Best of luck TrishaFL, Dhbbfh1999,and GAWarrior, we got this!!

  • alto
    alto Member Posts: 82
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    My go-to's were soft things that weren't too tight.

    I got so used to not wearing deodorant because they restricted that after SNB surgery, and again with the mastectomy (stitches under arm). Those sensitive-skin baby wipes work great for keeping the under arms acceptable when you can't wear deodorant. They have baking soda to neutralize odor but are gentle.

    I usually use roll deodorant (less residue on clothes) and found Dry Idea is my favorite.

  • Motheroftwo36
    Motheroftwo36 Member Posts: 13
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    don’t have a date yet but I was told my BMX will be in March. Good luck to all here

  • midatlanticmom
    midatlanticmom Member Posts: 4
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    Hi Ladies....I was recently diagnosed but have no surgery scheduled yet. My initial reaction is to go flat, as I don't want additional surgeries. I know I'll need to have chemo and possibly radiation depending on lymph nodes and I'd like to shorten this process as much as possible. My breast surgeon wants me to meet with a plastic surgeon so that I am fully informed about my options. My breast surgeon says only 15% of her patients opt for going flat. Seems pretty low to me.

  • moderators
    moderators Posts: 7,912
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    Hi midatlanticmom,

    We welcome you here Medicating

    This decision is so personal. There is a forum called Living without reconstruction that you may find helpful to read as well.

    Certainly no right or wrong, so gathering insights is exactly the best thing to do, as you are!


  • gawarrior
    gawarrior Member Posts: 367
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    Hey, y'all, just checking in. Today's exchange surgery went well, I was home and on the couch just after noon (7:30 am start time). I'm happy the pain isn't too bad so far. The PS put in 2 different size implants because he left more tissue in the non-cancer side during my BMX. I can't tell what I look like since I'm wrapped in gauze (plus they have to settle in for 3-6 months!). I might have fat grafting in the summer after we see how they look.


  • Darnit_DDD
    Darnit_DDD Member Posts: 21
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    Glad to hear it GAWarrior, thanks for checking in, great news! Let us know how it’s going.

    I’m so ready for the 6th to get here and hope my BMX with no reconstruction is uneventful. I’m as ready as I’ll ever be and just grateful I haven’t caught a cold or had any delays as this is nerve wracking.

    Praying for good news on the SNB results.

    Midatlanticmom, welcome, sorry you have to be here, I’m going flat and the mods are correct, great info and support on that forum.

    Best of luck motheroftwo36, let us know how it’s going


  • dhbbfh1999
    dhbbfh1999 Member Posts: 11
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    Hello everyone! I have been reading your posts and printed off the Hospital Tips list. Now that I have 10 days left before surgery I am starting to stress. My husband’s 71 year old aunt is with us in our house, unplanned. My recliner I planned to sleep in, is in the living room and that’s where she’s sleeping until we can sell our pool table and all the furniture in my husband’s “man cave” to make a bedroom for her. She is an A&E level hoarder and I absolutely cannot allow her to go back into that dangerous, health hazardous and unfit apartment!

    I texted her to tell her about my surgery and check in with her. That’s when she told me she hadn’t been to her doctors for her follow up lung CT (prior lung cancer Grade 0, had a lobectomy and has done great) her pulmonologist ordered months ago and hasn’t been out of her second floor apartment in a month. I think she really means two months! Or more! Hasn’t bathed, grocery shopped, done laundry, gotten the mail, or taken the trash out, in what appears to be months and months. She had an appointment with her mental health provider the following day and I was off of work so I offered to take her.

    When my husband and I went to her apartment she said she “needed help digging out” which is the first time in 20 years we’ve ever heard this from her! She allowed us to look in as she tried to shove her front door partially open. So now since I cannot allow her to set foot back into her place, I’ll be having an undetermined length of time house guest in my home while I am trying to recover from a BMX!!!!🙄🙄

    During my freaking-out-about-this stress, I’ve been trying to plan for my surgery. What do you guys think about this robe? It’s expensive but the reviews are great.

    https://www.amazon.com/dp/B06XPNYK5R/ref=cm_sw_r_sms_c_api_i_qSNECb9JS0M1X

    The reason I’m looking at this in particular is because we are going to Memphis to a concert we’ve had tickets for since last April and I won’t miss it! (10 days post op) But I need something comfortable that holds drains yet still can be worn out in public!

    Let me know what you think!

    Gia




  • Cin17
    Cin17 Member Posts: 41
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    I am also posting in the February 2019 thread as my original surgery date was 2/27 but I came down with strep (caught from my 10-year old grandson who lives with us) so it was postponed to March 14. It was a difficult week, watching my initial surgery date come and go as I really want to get the surgery (and dreaded path report) behind me.

    Dhbbfh1999, I'm a planner too so I've been buying books and surgery supplies. My plastic surgeon had given me a list of items, including my post-surgery scripts, which I've placed in a wood basket by my bedside. I also bought a long-sleeve surgery top with drain pockets, a drain belt, as well as a mastectomy pillow, all with great reviews. I've thought about getting the robe you're looking at too – but given the price haven't clicked the buy button…yet. During recovery, I plan on wearing the drain belt under the many zip up hoodies I already have as that is what others suggested.

  • midatlanticmom
    midatlanticmom Member Posts: 4
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    I saw this post with a list of needed supplies for a "chemo kit" but I can't post the link, but its at www dot bigcdiet dot com - then go to resources

    Thanks everyone. I'll check out the other forum too :)

  • gawarrior
    gawarrior Member Posts: 367
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    Day 2 - doing fine. I still have some nausea, but minimal pain so I'm not taking anything for it. This has been much easier than the BMX (which wasn't nearly as bad as I though it would be).

    Wow, Dhbbfh1999, I can't imagine what you're going through! Good luck! FYI, my hospital gave me a pouch to wear around my neck that held the drains. Another way I did it was using a fanny pack because it took the weight of the drains off my neck. The robe is cute, but you can do these other things and still wear regular (looser-fitting) clothes (although the fanny pack will make you look pregnant, but that was the least of my worries at that point, lol). I have also seen women who used safety pins to just pin the drains into their shirts. The main thing is that you will want to wear blouses that open in the front for the first couple of weeks until you can move your arms more (no raising them above your head for awhile). I went to Goodwill and bought several to wear with loose camisoles underneath. I also have a mastectomy vest with pockets for the drains https://amzn.to/2GUxH3V (a friend gave it to me).

    To the chemo kit, I would add: headphones/earbuds to listen to music or whatever on your phone, or bring a kindle or tablet, bring snacks (infusions take about 3.5 - 4 hours), and warm socks. I wore a long-sleeved chemo shirt that had zippers that opened on either side of the neck (another friend gave it to me - I'm blessed with great friends!). I iced my feet and hands to help avoid neuropathy, so I was always cold while going through chemo. My MO clinic provided warm blankets, so you may not need the electric blanket or to bring your own regular blanket (ask your MO if they have them).

    Lastly, I'm a dental hygienist - please be sure to use a fluoride toothpaste while going through this (you can get cavities from a dry mouth and from sucking on ginger chews for nausea). I would recommend a ginger tea to help with nausea, instead of ginger chews. Only sugar-free candies and gum! One lady in my chemo group had a root canal in mid-chemo (which postponed her chemo) because she was sucking on hard candies. Just sayin'

    Edited to add: get a mastectomy pillow for the car. You'll use it between you and the seat belt. I got a cute kid's stuffed penguin that makes me smile when I use it. They also have ones that velcro to the seat belt. Also, they recommended silky pajama pants in the surgery pinned notes. I found a length of silk material at Goodwill, which I thought was better because I could wear what I wanted, but could bring the material to the couch, the bed, or the car when I needed it. The silk helps you slide off the bed, couch, car seat more easily so you don't have to use your arms to push with.

  • Alicesneed
    Alicesneed Member Posts: 78
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    Hi all - scheduled for BMX March 13. Trying to get organized. Everything has happened so fast.

    Best wishes to all

  • CreatureKeeper
    CreatureKeeper Member Posts: 18
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    My surgery is scheduled for March 15th, first thing in the morning. Plan is for a lumpectomy on the right. I will have a Magseed placed and lymph tracking material done the day before. 

  • moderators
    moderators Posts: 7,912
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    Dear Alicesneed,

    Welcome to the BCO community. We are sorry for your diagnosis and upcoming surgery but so glad that you reached out to our members. We hope that you will find support and helpful information here. Keep us posted and stay connected. We hope to see you around the boards.

    The Mods

  • Hi everyone. I was diagnosed in Feb and scheduled for mastectomy on March 14th. Still debating on whether to go for bmx. I have no genetic markers, but I'm 38, so totally freaked out. Glad to join you!

  • moderators
    moderators Posts: 7,912
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    Welcome, StacyMB! We're so sorry for what brings you here, but we hope you find this community to be a place of support! We're all here on this journey with you.

    The Mods

  • Cin17
    Cin17 Member Posts: 41
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    Hi StacyMB, March 14 is my surgery date too. Fingers crossed this strep clears up and it isn't further postponed.

    It never occurred to me to discuss bmx with my surgeon. She was rather insistent that the cancer is limited to the right breast but I'm wondering if I should call and ask about it.

  • keywestfan
    keywestfan Member Posts: 361
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    Hi StacyMB,

    We are at different parts of the life cycle, but have March 14 in common. I’m(gulp) 84 and will have a lumpectomy under twilight sleep- then no radiation, no chemo, but an AI, which terrifies me, for 5 years. Treatment is easier for much older women because of reduced life expectancy anyway. But I’m scared and find this hard from going so suddenly from being well and fully functioning to all these appointments and uncertainties and fears. Will be thinking of you.

  • Darnit_DDD
    Darnit_DDD Member Posts: 21
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    My heart goes out to everyone here facing surgery this month. My BMX is tomorrow 3/6.

    It’s a bit nerve wracking but glad to get this over with. I didn’t have much of an appetite today

    Praying and sending out good thoughts to all of you and will check back in later in the week.

    Look forward to being flat and fabulous for spring!


  • Jess6000
    Jess6000 Member Posts: 2
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    Hi. I am in Boston. Heading to surgery for DMX April 1st. I am also scheduled March 21st at another hospital. My second option hospital. I think I keep both floating because choosing one makes it real..

    Who is in Boston? What hospitals did you end up choosing? I am in between Dana Farber and Beth israel .

    Leaning towards Beth israel because they are offering better reconstruction options.

    I am still thinking getting on a plane to the Bahamas might be an option still? 🤷♀️

  • Jess6000
    Jess6000 Member Posts: 2
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    good luck darnitt DD tomorrow! You will do great

  • dhbbfh1999
    dhbbfh1999 Member Posts: 11
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    anyone know someone or have already been through a mastectomy that can give me advice? https://www.etsy.com/listing/622068996/3-item-gift-pack-mastectomy-drain?gpla=1&gao=1&&utm_source=google&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=shopping_us_ts1-a-home_and_living-bedding-bed_pillows-other&utm_custom1=96d0b22a-9478-419b-8a1c-a1ac019bf3a7&utm_content=go_920092452_44773478846_218707680451_pla-308555954075_m__622068996&gclid=EAIaIQobChMImfSDhebt4AIVgx6tBh1gswTvEAQYAyABEgKjvvD_BwE#

    My cousin is sending me $100 towards something like this. Is it overkill? One of my friends said it was and she had a BMX last summer. She didn’t elaborate on the text today as she works in the OR too.

    Since my cousin is offering I thought it would be nice to have as I do have to go out in public on March 22nd. What do you all think? When do you use that pillow other than cat ride home? Or when I lean over edge of tub and daughter washes my hair with handheld shower thing?

    Gia