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August 2019 surgery support group

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ucfknights
ucfknights Member Posts: 91

mom will be getting surgery sometime in August. Please drop by if you are scheduled in August or already had surgery and have any tips :)


Edited to add: my mom is getting a BMX on Aug 19. Final chemo is July 23rd


Here’s the list:

August 1 - LMS458412 - bilateral mastectomy w/o reconstruction

August 2 - sagelady - L mastectomy with sentinel node bx

August 5 - tmh0921 - bilateral mastectomy, latissimus dorsi flap reconstruction on my left breast, and tissue expander placement bilaterally

August 5 - Peggy814 - Bilateral Mastectomy

August 6 - okjoan - lumpectomy and axillary node biopsy

August 8 - laurencl - Right mastectomy with tissue expander placement

August 8 - dawns1962 - nipple sparring (hopefully) mastectomy of my right breast and expanders, left breast lifted

August 13 - arizonaboundgal - bilateral mastectomy with no reconstruction

August 19 - ucfknights' mom - bilateral mastectomy

August 19- notdefined - unilateral mastectomy with diep reconstruction

August ? - Nadia_D - right breast mastectomy with tissue expander placement

August ? - Margun - bilateral Goldilocks

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Comments

  • tmh0921
    tmh0921 Member Posts: 519
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    I'm scheduled for a bilateral mastectomy, latissimus dorsi flap reconstruction on my left breast, and tissue expander placement bilaterally on 8/5/19. My surgeon will also insert a port for my chemo during surgery

    I had a lumpectomy and axillary node dissection with my original Dx in 1999 so this is going to be a new experience.

  • notdefined
    notdefined Member Posts: 267
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    Thanks for starting this thread, I didn't know this existed already, and have been waiting patiently :). Surgery scheduled for August 19th. Having unilateral mastectomy with diep reconstruction.

  • edwards750
    edwards750 Member Posts: 1,568
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    Dang Tmh0921 - 3 times? So sorry. Once is bad enough. Hope all goes well for you this time.

    Diane

  • tmh0921
    tmh0921 Member Posts: 519
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    Yep, 3 primary BC.... peppered in with more fibroadenomas, ADH, ALH, & Cysts, than I can count. I've never had a normal mammogram.

    I was ready for a mastectomy in 2018, but I put it off.... I told myself one more abnormal finding and I'm done. So here we are.... just wish that "one more abnormal finding" had been closer to ADH than the IDC I have :)

    Tracy


  • lms458412
    lms458412 Member Posts: 289
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    Hi all! Add me to the list. I'll be getting a bilateral mastectomy with no reconstruction on August 1st.

  • tmh0921
    tmh0921 Member Posts: 519
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    Welcome LMS, looking forward to supporting each other.

    I’m stressed and just ready to get this over with

  • laurencl
    laurencl Member Posts: 203
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    I finished chemo yesterday and was hoping for a lumpectomy (8/8). I received a call from my surgeon tonight and she thinks a mastectomy is a safer option due to calcification on my scans (my actual tumor shrank to almost nothing). I have to see a plastic surgeon and make decisions. I was so happy to be done chemo and tonight I am just so sad. I trust my surgeon and will follow her recommendation, but it does feel like a blow right this minute

  • notdefined
    notdefined Member Posts: 267
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    Hugs Laurencl. It is such a bummer to have our course change during this ordeal. Is there a possibility it can change back to a lumpectomy?

    Did they give you a scan after chemo?

  • tmh0921
    tmh0921 Member Posts: 519
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    Hi

    Sorry your surgery recommendations changed. I understand the feeling, I was not supposed to need chemo. Then 2 weeks ago my Oncotype came back at 26 and now I’m having chemo after surgery. It seems like when we get to a decent place, plans change

  • SeattleSunshine
    SeattleSunshine Member Posts: 9
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    such a tough disappointment! This is a hard journey. I hope you get some better news soon

  • Nadia_D
    Nadia_D Member Posts: 1
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    Hi there,

    I'm in the list too. I'm having right breast mastectomy with tissue expander placement for further reconstruction in August. My last chemo is next week, I can't believe it. On the one hand, I'm looking forward to my surgery as I can be finally done with these long months of treatment. But on the other hand, I'm so anxious. How long will it take for me to recover? How would I feel? I'm so exhausted after chemo. And once you cut it off, you will never be able to bring it back. The loss of the part of my body, even though that part could actually kill me, is not easy to accept.

    Wish everyone recovers well!

    Nadia

  • tmh0921
    tmh0921 Member Posts: 519
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    Welcome Nadia!

  • laurencl
    laurencl Member Posts: 203
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    Thanks everyone for your kind words. I will get over myself and get back in fighter mode this week when I meet with the plastic surgeon and my surgeon again.

    Notdefined, yes, I had scans last week, and was told how good they were from the Radiologist and my MO. My Surgeon too, but because of a number of factors (location, breast size, calcification), she felt mastectomy was a better option. I always knew it was a possibility, I guess I was just excited to think about a lesser surgery. In the end, we all want the best option that gets this mess out of our lives for good

  • tmh0921
    tmh0921 Member Posts: 519
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    I had my pre-op with the plastic surgeon today and came home with 4 prescriptions to be filled and ready for post-op. I have a pain killer, an anti-nausea med, an antibiotic, and an injectable blood thinner. Next week I have my pre- op at the hospital, then it's on to surgery on Monday 8/5. I'm so ready to get this over with.

    On a side note, my office is filling up with Amazon boxes of supplies I ordered for surgery and chemo

  • laurencl
    laurencl Member Posts: 203
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    Can I ask what people are doing/buying to prepare for surgery. For some reason I cannot get punctuation to work on this site

  • tmh0921
    tmh0921 Member Posts: 519
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    I have ordered the following:

    • wedge pillow
    • body pillow (I'm a side sleeper, so hopefully this will help support and cushion)
    • 2 front opening tops with drain pockets
    • lanyard (to attach drains to in shower/bath)
    • stool softener (to counteract anticipated constipation from pain meds)
    • miralax (to counteract anticipated constipation from pain meds)
    • non-stick gauze pads
    • alcohol wipes
    • a thermal ear thermometer
    • a mini fridge for my bedroom, so I don't have to make trips up and down the stairs


    Some of this isn't just for surgery though. I'm starting chemo a month after surgery and some of this will also help me while going through chemo.

    Tracy

  • lms458412
    lms458412 Member Posts: 289
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    My surgery date is next week, so I'm trying to finalize my shopping this week, if possible, so I can focus next week on cleaning the house and prepping some food.

    So far, I've purchased two sets of pajamas that are soft and button up in the front. I also got a button up shirt for when I need to go to appointments. I'm still looking for another one. I have a couple of pair of loose, pull-on pants, too. From Etsy, I ordered a surgical drain holder and lanyard, plus a pillow for riding in the car/sleeping. I got some gauze pads, stool softener and an extra pillow for my bed (I already have 3, plus a wedge pillow). I bought a cheap set of sheets to drape over our sofa because it's light tan and I don't want to mess it up.

    I already have a few bendy straws, non-skid slippers, and other toiletries and comfort items. So, I'm pretty much just looking for one more shirt, at least, and I plan to buy some e-books (inspirational and romances).

    Hubby will be around for the first 5 days, and my dad will stay with me another day or two. So, I'll have lots of help the first week. I anticipate some friends checking up on me during the second week (although hubby can take more time off, if needed), and I hope I'll be feeling well enough by the third week to take care of myself!

    I'm actually getting kind of excited to get the surgery done and behind me. I know recovery won't be fun, but I just want these boobs off!!!! I was never a big fan of them, and now that they are misbehaving, I just want them gone, so I can move forward.

  • tmh0921
    tmh0921 Member Posts: 519
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    LMS

    It may be strange, but I'm also feeling excited to get the surgery done. I know this tumor was there for months and months before diagnosis, but once diagnosed, I just wanted this thing gone so I can move on to the next step!

    Tracy

  • lms458412
    lms458412 Member Posts: 289
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    Not strange at all, Tracy.

    I felt so good just two months ago when I didn't know the tumor was there. Now, it's on my mind every day and I want it out so I don't have to think about it. I can just think about doing all the other stuff I need to do to so that all the random cells floating around don't get a chance to stick again. It's like the first step to getting a fresh start. The next chapter. A new normal. I'm so ready. Glad you are, too. We're going to kick C's butt!

  • okjoan
    okjoan Member Posts: 7
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    I'm scheduled for lumpectomy and axillary node biopsy on 8/6. I was diagnosed with DCIS 6/21. The waiting has been the worst!

  • tmh0921
    tmh0921 Member Posts: 519
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    Welcome!

    Sometimes I think the waiting is the worst part of all of this

  • margun
    margun Member Posts: 385
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    I am having bilateral Goldilocks which combines mastectomy and reconstruction in the same time with leftover skin flaps. It is another option for ladies with large breast. It was first recommended lumpectomy but because microcalsificantions I decided to go with Goldilocks which does not require implants( i am not confortable having them in me either). I hope we Appbank rob the best decision for. Us and we will get rid of cancer forever

  • tmh0921
    tmh0921 Member Posts: 519
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    Welcome Margum

    I too hope we all are making the best decisions for each of us as individuals. One of the things I’ve learned on this journey is there is no one option that suits everyone.

    Tracy

  • lms458412
    lms458412 Member Posts: 289
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    Waiting is definitely the worst. I feel like I've aged 10 years in the past 6 weeks.

    I'm at peace with my surgery decision. I am 100% sure of what I'm doing. But, I know I'll have to do chemo and I'm not comfortable with it. I'm resigned to do it. I just look at my husband and my son and remind myself of why I need to be strong.

  • DawnS1962
    DawnS1962 Member Posts: 198
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    Please add me to the list. My surgery is scheduled for 8/8. I'm having a nipple sparring (hopefully) mastectomy of my right breast and expanders put in. My left breast will be lifted to match the right.

    I haven't bought anything yet. I hadn't thought about it till reading this thread. My oncology nurse told me the hospital will give me a special bra and I should ask for a second. My friends have started a meal train which I greatly appreciate and I'll make and freeze some meals also. DH has been amazing through all of this but can't cook anything but tuna casserole 😩

    Surgery is on a Thursday and I'm hoping to be up and about by Monday. My PS said the drains would be removed a week to 2 at the most and I can shower with them. That's all I really know at this point.

    I'm also looking forward to surgery just to be closer to the finish line. I'll be on either H&P or Kadcyla till May but that should be a piece of cake after the red devil, Taxol and surgery.

    🤗🤗

    Dawn

  • arizonaboundgal
    arizonaboundgal Member Posts: 38
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    I'll be reporting for duty on Tuesday, August 13th. I'm having a BMX with no reconstruction. I'm not looking forward to the surgery, but know that I'll feel better once it's done. Have been living with this question of BC since an abnormal mammogram in early May. It's been a looooong few months. I still need to get better prepared for post surgery, but I did buy one of those comfy looking foam bed wedges.

  • 2019whatayear
    2019whatayear Member Posts: 468
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    Popping in from having a BMX on 6/25 w/o reconstruction. I hope all of you have wonderful surgeons and easy recoveries. IMO you don't need a ton of stuff for recovery - the one thing I could not have done with out was a full body pillow from amazon! If you get one thing to make your life easier, get a body pillow. Also my BFF bought me a fanny pack and I used that to put my drains in when I showered.


    Best wishes to all of you! It's great post surgery to know that damn cancer is out of your body!

    Victoria

  • laurencl
    laurencl Member Posts: 203
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    My surgery is also 8/8. Right mastectomy with tissue expander placement. I am trying to prepare (clean the house, tie up loose ends at work, stock up on stuff), but if I’m honest, I’m terrified. Waking up after surgery, pain, drains....I want to run away from all of it. This journey started with diagnosis in January. I joke that I was never sick until I had cancer.
  • DawnS1962
    DawnS1962 Member Posts: 198
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    Wow Lauren, we're really on the same schedule here. I was diagnosed 1/25.

    I just want this over with. I've put my trust in who I consider the experts and hope they're right. I've never had surgery before and it does terrify me but what's the alternative?

    By the end of August we should be on the path to normalcy. I just want to feel normal again.

  • lms458412
    lms458412 Member Posts: 289
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    Here's the schedule so far:

    August 1 - LMS458412 - bilateral mastectomy w/o reconstruction

    August 5 - tmh0921 - bilateral mastectomy, latissimus dorsi flap reconstruction on my left breast, and tissue expander placement bilaterally

    August 6 - okjoan - lumpectomy and axillary node biopsy

    August 8 - laurencl - Right mastectomy with tissue expander placement

    August 8 - dawns1962 - nipple sparring (hopefully) mastectomy of my right breast and expanders, left breast lifted

    August 13 - arizonaboundgal - bilateral mastectomy with no reconstruction

    August 19 - ucfknights' mom - bilateral mastectomy

    August 19- notdefined - unilateral mastectomy with diep reconstruction

    August ? - Nadia_D - right breast mastectomy with tissue expander placement

    August ? - Margun - bilateral Goldilocks


    Here's hoping for quick healing and a return to health for us all!!!!!!!!!