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January 2021 Surgery Group

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245

Comments

  • kimberly1981
    kimberly1981 Member Posts: 30
    edited January 2021
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    NotAsCalmAsILook - Added - welcome!

  • MEM127
    MEM127 Member Posts: 18
    edited January 2021
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    I'm a knitting nerd too! My surgery isn't scheduled yet. I just saw my second biopsy results on-line tonight but haven't talked to the surgeon yet. If it's a lumpectomy, it will be this month. If it's more, then I don't know how soon it will be. I'm hoping to get some good knitting time in because otherwise I will lose my mind sitting around.

    I hope the surgeon calls early tomorrow because I just want a gameplan moving forward. Good luck to everyone else this month!

  • KLMN
    KLMN Member Posts: 9
    edited January 2021
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    Kimberly1981 - thanks for your note. I agree best to get them done and move on to healing! And I am sure you are right - better to be hike than in the hospital.

    10 days out and so far I am doing pretty well. Likely will get more nervous as I get closer.

    We got this!!!!

  • KLMN
    KLMN Member Posts: 9
    edited January 2021
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    Kimberly1981 - I am really hoping you are able to do both sides at once - tell your doctors that at the Mayo Clinic they have been doing BMX for 9 months as outpatient without issue. Maybe you can join me.


    Coronavirus situation in California is horrible.

    Keep us posted.

  • KnitNerd
    KnitNerd Member Posts: 19
    edited January 2021
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    kimberly1981s -- Nails falling off? Well, that officially sucks. I've found it very calming and meditative to go down to the basement and squeeze my stash a little. So maybe this will give you an excuse to buy yourself more yarn. :)

    And yay for other knitters!

    I'm watching the Covid numbers for our local hospital and so far they're OK. The hospital staff has mostly if not all been vaccinated at this point, which makes me feel a little less nervous. I have to call my doctor today because I'm not sure, but does anyone have to do extra protocols or get a Covid test before surgery?


  • Susiemommy
    Susiemommy Member Posts: 46
    edited January 2021
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    Not sure where you are, Knitnerd, but all year long a pre-procedure negative test has been required here in KY. I just had mine yesterday for my surgery tomorrow.

  • KnitNerd
    KnitNerd Member Posts: 19
    edited January 2021
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    Susiemommy -- Good to know. I'm up in Michigan so will call tomorrow to double check on that.

    Good luck with surgery!

  • kimberly1981
    kimberly1981 Member Posts: 30
    edited January 2021
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    MEM127 - Keep us posted and I hope you hear from your doc soon!

    KLMN - You're right - we do got this! I'm hoping that if the hospital is still full of COVID but not completely overwhelmed, there might be an option to do the whole shebang and send me home. That way I don't risk getting COVID but if something goes horribly awry, there's still a bed for me in the hospital. What a strange world we all live in now...

    KnitNerd - It's the worst!!! If anyone has to do chemo after your surgeries and one of them is taxotere - ICE YOUR FINGERS AND TOES! I didn't do it for one treatment and that's the one that got me. Sigh. And we have to do the brain poking COVID test here 2-3 days before any big procedure.

  • deniseml
    deniseml Member Posts: 68
    edited January 2021
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    hi kimberly1981. We seem to be on same schedule in BC treatment. I completed TCHP December 8th & am scheduled for UMX with Axillary dissection on 1/15. Opted to go flat and delay prophylactic MX until autologous reconstruction. Will be having Radiation following surgery also. Just don't want any increased risk of delaying BC treatment, to recover fully, regain strength and have a little normalcy in my life before reconstruction. Not certain, but plan to delay for 18 months after surgery. Time enough to complete radiation & a year of immunotherapy. Feeling good about my decisions, though am starting to get nervous about surgery. Didn't expect the anxiety because I just want the breast gone! Good luck to all heading for surgery this month! Will be thinking & praying for all

  • deniseml
    deniseml Member Posts: 68
    edited January 2021
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    knit nerd- I will be getting COVID. Test next Wednesday for surgery on 1/15 in Atlanta. No. Visitors allowed still, very distressing for my husband. Will be staying 1 night.

  • Danavice
    Danavice Member Posts: 12
    edited January 2021
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    Hey there... I am not scheduled in January but am scheduled on 1 February (if no COVID shutdown) for BMX and SNB (both sides).... Wondered if I could hop on January's ticket?

    Is there anybody else opting for an aesthetic front closure? I had most of December to make a decision and have decided that reconstruction isn't for me.


  • KnitNerd
    KnitNerd Member Posts: 19
    edited January 2021
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    So update from Michigan: I don't need a Covid test, but they will ask me screening questions as part of my pre-op phone consultation. If I have any symptoms, they may ask me to get one. It sounds like the policy is fluid though depending on cases and that sort of thing. The hospital also has charts on their website with number of admitted Covid cases so I'm keeping an eye on that as well just in case. Definitely sounds like policies vary depending on your area and state. Just another thing to worry about -- because none of us have anything else going on, eh?

  • Bkbkg
    Bkbkg Member Posts: 2
    edited January 2021
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    update - her-2 came back negative, so no additional treatment needed before surgery! Still scheduled for 1/18 @ Women’s Hospital and my husband can be there during surgery, just not able to go to the hospital room with me after. I will be staying overnight. Feels like there is so much to do to prepare, but I am trying not to let myself feel overwhelmed.

  • MEM127
    MEM127 Member Posts: 18
    edited January 2021
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    I am officially scheduled for a lumpectomy on the right side on January 19th, with sentinel node biopsy, and also a surgical excision (same as a lumpectomy?) on the left breast to remove FEA that they just diagnosed with the MRI biopsy. They require Covid tests in MA so I'll need to get that end of next week. I also have to go in the Friday before to have magseed markers put in. One thing that is odd - the DCIS on the right is ER negative, but the FEA on the left is ER positive. I have no idea if that is normal, but I doubt it, LOL. I haven't read up on what to expect with this day surgery at all. What's the normal recuperation period? I had my gallbladder out awhile back and that wasn't too bad. I was back to work in a couple days (although in hindsight, I could have used a couple more!). What is everyone else having this surgery expecting/planning?

  • deniseml
    deniseml Member Posts: 68
    edited January 2021
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    correction: surgery is 1/15/21

  • KnitNerd
    KnitNerd Member Posts: 19
    edited January 2021
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    MEM127 -- For recovery, my doctor told my husband he needs to be the hunter and gatherer for two weeks. In other words, I can't cook or clean or do anything really for two weeks. It's going to be "interesting" with a husband and two kids all working at home. My plan is to sit on the couch, watch TV and knit for two weeks no matter how I'm feeling or I'll try to do things and help people around the house. Not too worried about the pain and all that -- I did pretty well with two c-sections. The actual surgery is more daunting to me than the recovery. Going alone for that since we don't have family nearby to help with the kids and, well, Covid.

  • kimberly1981
    kimberly1981 Member Posts: 30
    edited January 2021
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    DeniseML - Wow, we really are on the same trajectory - even got the awful news on the same day! I've added you to the list and I'll be thinking of you on the 15th.

    Danavice - Of course you're welcome here! Added your surgery to the list. I had considered going flat with a clean closure, but since I was able to go direct to implants, figured I'd give it a shot.

    KnitNerd - So weird that you don't need a COVID test - has the surge subsided where you are? And how old are your kids - old enough to be helpful? My daughter is 10 and was so thoughtful during chemo - I'm hoping a silver lining from all of this is it will make her more empathetic and kind.

    Bkbkg - Congrats on the news and so glad you can have someone there with you!

    MEM127 - Added to the list. I think since the FEA is in the other breast it's not uncommon for the +- markers to be different - it may just mean it was a different cancer. I've also heard of the same tumor having different +- between the biopsy and the surgery because the biopsy is just a small bit of the tumor whereas when they cut it out they can check the whole thing.

  • Susiemommy
    Susiemommy Member Posts: 46
    edited January 2021
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    Well, ladies, I'm on the other side of surgery, and it is such a relief to have it over with! I was so nervous about the whole procedure, but everything went as planned and everyone soooo knows what they're doing. Unfortunately, breast cancer has gotten to be pretty common, so the medical community is quite prepared for all of our particular types of surgeries. I hope that can set some of your minds at ease. I'm still very sore today (the day after) and have stayed pretty constantly on the pain medication - which is something I did not have to do after all 3 C-sections. It is very difficult NOT to do things for myself, so beware of the temptation. Just because you CAN reach something or lift something doesn't mean you should. Sending good vibes out to all of you!

  • Danavice
    Danavice Member Posts: 12
    edited January 2021
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    Thank you! I am a little early for a February board.

    Very interesting to read how different areas are affected by COVID protocols. I have been told to self-isolate for the week prior to surgery and that I will need to do a COVID test 3 days before. Quarantine won't be difficult, there is nowhere to go right now anyway (we are locked down)! The week before will be more difficult for my teenager than me!

    No visitors allowed here either, but it is only one night so no worries. I am wondering how many weeks people are anticipating taking off work? I think 6 weeks is what I see average? Is anyone taking an earlier leave, like a week before for a mental break before surgery? (We are eligible for up to 16 weeks of EI for sick leave, here, but I don't know how American system works at all)

    I feel so burned out from testing, waiting, consultation, testing, waiting, scheduling, waiting. It was a relief, weirdly, to get a date as I felt sort of like I was in a holding pattern which was causing far more anxiety than the diagnosis (ie: not being able to commit to meetings, project tasks or other events work because I was unsure when I'd be gone). Anyone else?

  • KnitNerd
    KnitNerd Member Posts: 19
    edited January 2021
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    kimberly1981 -- Covid isn't great here, but our big surge was at the beginning back in March/April. The hospital has around half that number of cases now. They'vehas also made a big deal about their workers being vaccinated already. And good to know about your daughter! My kids are around that age and I really worry about them. We haven't told them yet -- will probably do it this weekend -- but I worry about them after so many other things they've had to deal with this past year. But your daughter sounds like my boys -- they love to be helpers!

    Susiemommy -- Great news about your surgery! The waiting is really bugging me too and I'm more worried about the procedure than the recovery. So glad to know I'm not the only one and that things are going well now. And you're right -- this is everyday for the doctors and nurses and they've seen lots of boobs. They'll know what to do with mine. Hopefully. ;)

  • kimberly1981
    kimberly1981 Member Posts: 30
    edited January 2021
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    Susiemommy - Congrats on being done with surgery! Good advice about not trying to do things on your own - I think that will be hard for a lot of us.

    Danavice - Is 1 night normal in Canada for a BMX or have they shortened it because of COVID? The American system for time off is mixed and depends on which state you live in and the company you work for. I get up to 8 weeks paid for between by state's disability and my short-term disability insurance but I'm hoping not to take all of it now in case I need it for something later this year (stupid unpredictable cancer...). I'm working up until the day before my surgery and coping by not thinking about it - that's totally healthy, right?! I feel like if I wasn't compartmentalizing I wouldn't be able to function.

    KnitNerd - I told my daughter pretty early on but probably painted too rosy of a picture for her because she wasn't totally prepared for what chemo was like for me. And it didn't help that somewhere around round 5 when I was at my worst, she had to read a book in school with a character that dies from cancer. After that, I think she understood the gravity a bit more and has been extra helpful and loving since then. She asked if when I come home from surgery if I'd like her to have a bath prepared - so sweet! (I of course told her no and then completely grossed her out by describing the drains - ha!)

  • Danavice
    Danavice Member Posts: 12
    edited January 2021
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    kimberly1981 - 1 night for BMX is standard here in Ontario, it'd be different for every province. I was hoping that with COVID situation they might consider letting me go home in the evening, if no apparent complications, but Outpatient doesn't seem to be an option. I just realized, writing this, that because of the travel restrictions and lockdowns, it will be the first night away from home in almost a year....

    I am booking 6 weeks off of work but maybe I will go back early: right now we are still work from home, so I am thinking maybe coming back at least part-time after 4.

  • KBax8
    KBax8 Member Posts: 3
    edited January 2021
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    I was diagnosed with Stage 1 DCIS with micro-invasion on Dec. 18th. The pathology report is showing ER+, PR+, and HER2+. I started seeing surgeons on the 23rd and was told that I had options from lumpectomy with 6 weeks of radiation at minimum to a double mastectomy.

    I'm 35 years old with 2-year-old son and 6.5-month-old identical twin girls. My heart just sank when I got the news because all I kept thinking about was them. After multiple discussions with various doctors and my family, I came to the conclusion that the best thing for me at this stage in my life was to be as aggressive as possible. So I have chosen to move forward with a nipple-sparing double mastectomy. They wanted to quickly get me in for the surgery, I met with the plastic surgeon on the 6th and they are going to perform the surgery on the 19th.

    I'm stressing about trying to get everything organized for the household (arranging childcare help for my husband), getting all the things I think I may need for post-op, and buttoning up things at my work.

    I'm anxiously waiting for this to be over, and once it's over, I will be anxious to hear the pathology report. My oncologist thinks I will be able to come in to see her on the 25th to review. I'm sure I will be in pain at the appointment but I don't want to wait. I just want to hear what the recommendation for follow-up treatment will be. I've only been advised on hormonal therapy to combat the ER+/PR+, still unknown for the HER2+. I am so nervous for the surgery and to see how quickly I will be able to recover.

    I was so happy to find this community as I was looking to find some others that are going through this to help support each other.

  • jasmin2020
    jasmin2020 Member Posts: 11
    edited January 2021
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    Hello everyone! I am so glad to have found this group. I was diagnosed in mid-December with extensive (8+ cm) high grade DCIS with microinvasion. I am scheduled for a double mastectomy with reconstruction on January 21st. Plastic surgeon said I'm not a good candidate for direct to implant so I will have to do tissue expanders—yikes. Will be having the surgery out of state in NYC and feeling overwhelmed about the logistics and procedure and recovery but also and especially about the post-surgery pathology report. Sending lots of good vibes to this wonderful January surgery group! 💪

  • LiveLoveLaugh2020
    LiveLoveLaugh2020 Member Posts: 173
    edited January 2021
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    Hey January ladies.. just wanted to say I wish you all the best with your surgeries. I had my exchange surgery last January (I cannot believe it’s been a year already).

    The beginning is the worst - anxiety, sleepless nights, sadness - all of the unknown is frightening. But please know it gets better, and you’ll get through this.

    I’m here if anyone has questions about anything, feel free to PM me. Again I wish you all the best.

  • kimberly1981
    kimberly1981 Member Posts: 30
    edited January 2021
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    KBax8 - I'm so sorry you find yourself here, but welcome to the group - I've added your surgery. Cancer at any age is awful, but being young with littles at home and finding out you have an aggressive invader in your body is quite a life-changer. I have a 10 year old but can't imagine how much harder it is with 3 teeny tinies - is there anyone who can come stay with you and your husband to help while you are recovering? I'm 39, also with triple positive and once I got over the shock I too took the "be as aggressive as possible" stance with it - because a) I'm not letting this shit kill me if I can do anything to prevent it and b) I don't want to do this again. Have you been given any details on chemo yet? If/when you get to that stage, the message boards here are amazing to help you know what to expect and how to deal with side effects.

    Jasmin2020 - Welcome and your surgery has been added - we're on the same day but 3000+ miles apart! How far do you have to travel to NYC and is anyone allowed to come with you? I wish you a smooth surgery and speedy recovery with good news on pathology.

    LiveLoveLaugh2020 - Thank you for the well-wishes and encouragement. These boards are so helpful to see all the people who have gone through this before us and made it through to the other side.


    To everyone who had their surgeries this week - how are you feeling? I hope you're all recovering and pain/discomfort is minimal.

  • KnitNerd
    KnitNerd Member Posts: 19
    edited January 2021
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    KBax8 -- I'm so sorry for your diagnosis with such little ones at home. My kids are in elementary school and were a big part of why I've made the decisions I've made as well. We need to just get through this so we can spend many more years with them!

    I'm like both you and kimberly1981 -- be aggressive, get it done, and move on! I have a mantra for this that I've been trying to live by since my diagnosis, but it's a lot of swear words so I won't post it here. ;)

  • KBax8
    KBax8 Member Posts: 3
    edited January 2021
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    Thank you for the positive words KnitNerd and Kimberly1981. I’m fortune that we have family who will be dedicating a lot of their time to support us.

    I haven’t been told exactly what treatment in regards to chemo yet. They said they can walk me through the pathology report after the surgery on the 25th. I’m honestly more anxious on that piece I think than the actual surgery and reconstruction.

  • mtspacekace
    mtspacekace Member Posts: 123
    edited January 2021
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    KBax8: I am 39, and had a bmx with tissue expanders on Dec 18, I was able to leave the house 7 days after surgery and went to the grocery store 8 days after...you will be fine going to the dr. If you don’t have tissue expanders put in, I have heard recovery is faster. I am right at 3 weeks out and feeling fairly good, the only thing feeling weird is the tissue expanders...positive vibes to you and everyone else on this crazy cancer journey.

  • KBax8
    KBax8 Member Posts: 3
    edited January 2021
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    Thanks @mtspacekace. That is great hearing how quickly you were able to get back to regular routines. I'm planning on going back to work since we are remote due to COVID hopefully 2 weeks afterwards. I figured that I would start getting antsy if I wasn't doing too much beyond (TV/Movies, books, etc.)