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August 2021 Surgeries

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  • HummingbirdAZ
    HummingbirdAZ Member Posts: 93
    edited August 2021
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    EminGA-- I was able to have my daughter with me in pre-op and they let her come in post-op for a minute to say hello (They say I told her she should go shopping and buy herself some clothes, but I don't remember that!) The next day, she was able to come from 9am-2pm as a visitor but with my last minute extended stay, she was there until 4pm. It was good enough as I think there was a lot going on and not much time to "visit". Not sure if you are overnight or outpatient, but I'm sure he will be there for pre and post so he can get all the instructions. I'm at Cancer Treatment Centers of America, which I think has a center near Atlanta if you are close to there. I have nothing but great things to say about them.

    LW422-- I had that SAVI Scout inserted prior to surgery, similar to the seed but works on radio frequency. The surgeon uses a handheld device to locate the tumor. Completely painless so I would assume the seed is as well.

    PamEP-- I 100% agree with you on the value of this site and discussion board! It has helped me ask questions I would not have known to ask and also with getting supplies and help for post-op. I am amazed at the range of motion I have and probably over prepared but that's better than needing something.My best suggestion is to take advantage of the Back to School sales and get one of those bed armchair backrests. Mine is from Target and was only $15. I also got a wedge pillow but this is better for daytime. I feel like the armchair backrest will be used even after recovery :)

    Good luck and don't be scared. Having the cancer taken out is worth the discomfort!!


  • barbojoy
    barbojoy Member Posts: 47
    edited August 2021
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    Hi Bookpusher. I have also experienced those "zaps". I told my SO that I get pinching and biting sensations. She said that's normal. I was prescribed a lot of drugs to take home- Antibiotic, Lyrica, Celebrex, Flexeril + Oxy. I am 1 week post DMX and SO said I can stop all drugs except antibiotic. I found that with the drugs, the pinching and biting are minimal. Without them now, I am much more sore- feel more restricted in my movements and have a crazy pain w/ left drain that feels like a pipe cleaner is being pushed and pulled inside me. Ugh. I am interested to know how your zaps are doing now. As well as anyone else post MX having similar pains. Best of luck for speedy recovery!

  • pamep
    pamep Member Posts: 66
    edited August 2021
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    Thanks for the advice and good wishes Hummingbird. I have one of those backrest pillows, which I will try for recovery comfort. I picked up a couple of zip-up sports bras thinking I may have right arm restriction from the SLNB that would make slipping one overhead difficult. It sounds like your range of motion was good after surgery. I am apprehensive but hopeful about today's surgery. It's this afternoon and I will be spending the night in the hospital for observation, with drain removal tomorrow morning before discharge. I am anxious but determined to beat this thing.

    Best wishes to all!

  • NatureYogi
    NatureYogi Member Posts: 135
    edited August 2021
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    EminGa2018-Hello from Savannah, Ga....Wilmington Island! I'm not sure if it is the same in St Simons as here, but they recently started letting a family member come into pre surgery room and then allowed 2 visitors later in the day. I had surgery 2 weeks ago and I had my last drain pulled out this morning.

    Take care!

  • CGLion
    CGLion Member Posts: 24
    edited August 2021
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    I hope I am not stepping on any toes posting here! I am high risk for breast cancer due to biopsy results and significant family history so it was recommended to me to have a prophylactic bilateral mastectomy. I was just scheduled for surgery on August 23rd. I'm planning on an aesthetic flat closure because I really want to minimize any complications and I don't want more surgeries if at all possible. My head is a bit in a whirl with everything I need to do to prepare and get done before hand. Really hoping to be able to chat with you as we prepare for surgery and recover from it!

  • Bookpusher
    Bookpusher Member Posts: 22
    edited August 2021
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    Barbojoy,

    I am still having “zaps”. Mostly in the cancerous breast, just a few on my prophylactic side. I have not had an oxy since Tuesday around 3:00 pm, the day after surgery. I took one for the car ride home (2 1/2hrs) I have used Tylenol since then and it’s been been ok pain wise. My bowels got going yesterday, so ok in that department. My right drain bothers me a lot, left is fine. I have little drainage on both sides. The painful right drain is mostly yellowish liquid. I hope that is ok, maybe someone can comment on that.

    Hope you are experiencing less pain. Can’t wait for drains to come out. Best wishes to all for better days ahead.

  • lw422
    lw422 Member Posts: 1,403
    edited August 2021
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    GCLion--of course you are not stepping on any toes! You are having surgery in August 2021, so you belong here with the rest of us. (And anyone else who cares to chime in!) My surgery (single Mx) is also the 23rd so we can commiserate! My best wishes to you for a successful outcome and an easy recovery.

  • lw422
    lw422 Member Posts: 1,403
    edited August 2021
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    HummingbirdAZ--thanks for the input on the seed. My biggest concern is that if they couldn't find the clip at my recent US, how will they find it to insert the seed... ack.

  • Bookpusher
    Bookpusher Member Posts: 22
    edited August 2021
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    CJLion, Hope your surgery goes well and you have a smooth recovery. I was terrified of the pain, but it has been very manageable . The drains to me are the worst part - once they come out I think everything will be so much easier. I am not a back sleeper, and with the drains that’s a must. But, all in all the process has been better than I imagined it would be. Let us know how you do.

    The one item I have been glad to have is my robe with the pockets to hold the drains. I have the mastectomy pillow, too, and it is nice. But the robe is my favorite, makes it a lot easier to deal with the drains.

    LW, I don’t know anything about the seed placement but I hope it goes well for you!

    NatureYogi, I know you were glad to get that last drain out. Bet you feel so much better.

    I hope everyone can have someone with them in pre-op and then in the room afterwards. My husband was allowed to spend the night with me. There was a comfy recliner and sofa in my room so it worked out great. I hope new restrictions won’t have to be imposed.

    Best wishes to all!!

  • lw422
    lw422 Member Posts: 1,403
    edited August 2021
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    BookPusher--I'm glad to hear that your recovery is going well. Thanks for checking in.

    An FYI for y'all ... I just thought I'd mention that I read someplace about buying a cheap "nail apron" from Home Depot or Lowes to hold the drains after surgery! If you want that perfect fashion accessory, nothing says "mastectomy survivor" quite like a tool apron!! My hubby brought me one from HD and I washed it so it's ready to go!! I think it was 97 cents so no biggie. :cool:

    image

  • Easymac08
    Easymac08 Member Posts: 14
    edited August 2021
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    hey everyone! I did my DMX to flat today! I did the peck block and got to go home same day. I'm feeling okay. My armpit hurts where they took 4 sentinel nodes. Which all biopsied negative!! For me, waiting for the final pathology is hardest. Just the unknown again! Like at diagnosis. But, I have been feeling peace from God. Just carrying me as I wait.

    Erin

  • lw422
    lw422 Member Posts: 1,403
    edited August 2021
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    Hey Erin. Glad it's over and went well for you. Take good care and spoil yourself a little. (Or a lot.)

  • NatureYogi
    NatureYogi Member Posts: 135
    edited August 2021
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    Bookpusher-The yellow fluid in the drains is totally normal. Once the drains are out, life does get better! In two days I can take a "real" shower, yay!

    GCLion-You are welcome here, hope we can help out with any questions on your upcoming surgery!

    LW422- love the Home Depot apron! I had something similar and it worked great for the drains. Your husband can hold the apron with drains when you need to sponge bath or shower your lower body and arms.

    Erin-Take care and continue with that peace!

  • waves2stars
    waves2stars Member Posts: 123
    edited August 2021
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    Esther, how did you know to ask about damage to the heart from radiation on the left side?

  • pamep
    pamep Member Posts: 66
    edited August 2021
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    Surgery yesterday: "Partial Mastectomy with Axial Node Screening". Yeah, it's over! I was scheduled to remain overnight but was bumped by the hospital administration due to new COVID patients. No complaint from me, I was discharged home for family observation. My daughter is a nurse, so my surgeon felt comfortable with this change in medical plans.

    The procedure was more difficult for me than the previous excisional biopsy, but I am already feeling better though swollen and a little bruised. I was sent home with Hydrcodone/Acetaminophen (Norco) for pain, which really helped me sleep. Also antibiotics. And my post-op nurse gave me a cute heart shaped pillow to soften the node incision site from my arm and to remind me not to use that arm. No drain. Waiting for the pathology report--hope the nodes are negative like yours Easymac08!

    Good luck to all in surgery and recovery!


  • lw422
    lw422 Member Posts: 1,403
    edited August 2021
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    PamEP--glad it's over for you and that you got to go home. How sweet of the nurse to gift the pillow. We're all hoping for negative biopsy results for you! Take care.

  • HummingbirdAZ
    HummingbirdAZ Member Posts: 93
    edited August 2021
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    Bookpusher- SO happy you were able to have the hubby the whole time and things went well for you!

    PamEP- Great that you could go home and your daughter is a nurse! My daughter is definitely NOT a nurse but is playing one right now. I think she's almost fainted more than me, lol.

    LW422- My hospital gave me a care package with handmade pillow for the ride home and a similar apron for the drains, made in flannel with cute little bunnies on it. A note inside says it was "made by Dottie". SOOOOO adorable!! I'm going to see if they will deliver a thank you to Dottie.

    EVERYONE- praying for all great path reports and easy upcoming surgeries for the rest of the month!

    I'm doing pretty well today. Stopped all meds but the required and Xstrength Tylenol, but also feel those "zaps". I think they are drain related. My surgeon wants to see me Wednesday to take out drain and give me pathology. I hope she will also have the oncotype so I don't have to wait longer to know how the next few months will pan out. Got my first treatment bills yesterday, oh boy!

  • lw422
    lw422 Member Posts: 1,403
    edited August 2021
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    Waves2Stars--there is a wealth of information on the forum about radiation treatment and possible SEs. There are also monthly Radiation threads similar to this surgery thread. Check out this section of the forum... https://community.breastcancer.org/forum/70

  • Chirodani
    Chirodani Member Posts: 14
    edited August 2021
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    Just found this forum and I'm loving the recommendations and encouragement! Wishing everyone quick recoveries and minimal pain!! With that being said, of course I have questions!

    I have stage 1 triple negative IDC in the right breast. I am having a double mastectomy with reconstruction on August 20th.

    Kaiser gives me two camisoles with pockets for the drains but nothing else. I was told to bring one of the camisoles to my surgery. I've also been told I will probably go home the same day.

    Should I bring slippers or slip on shoes? I love the idea of the robe with inside pockets. I'm worried about putting a camisole over my head (I haven't seen it yet maybe it zips in front). If I have one of those reading pillows with the arms do I need a wedge pillow? Luckily I have an recliner so I can sleep in that if I need to. I was looking at those pillows that shield your chest from the seat belt. Did anyone find that useful? Any other big thing I should bring to the hospital? I'm excited my Girl Scout cookie apron might have another use as a drain holder! Hahaha!

  • EminGA2018
    EminGA2018 Member Posts: 21
    edited August 2021
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    hi Hummingbird!

    I’m so glad your daughter was there with you before surgery and able to visit with you after! I’m hoping visitation won’t be an issue. I’m staying overnight but I’m guessing most of that time will be medicated and sleeping…I’m sure whatever happens will be manageable😊 I hope you’re healing well

  • EminGA2018
    EminGA2018 Member Posts: 21
    edited August 2021
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    NatureYogi,

    Thanks for that info!😊 that helps!!I’m having my surgery at Memorial in Savannah. So far..I am really thrilled with my SO and the hospital!! Congratulations on getting that last drain out!!! I hope you’re healing ❤️🩹 well.

  • barbojoy
    barbojoy Member Posts: 47
    edited August 2021
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    Hello everyone. Hope those who have had surgeries are recovering well and that those scheduled this week have successful outcomes.

    Pre-surgical pathology was 08/06. Biopsy pathology from 06/28 was triple positive IDC with DCIS. 2 lymph nodes came back negative and a nipple punch biopsy a year ago showed negative for Paget’s disease.

    Received pathology from my 07/28 DMX on 08/06.

    It came back ER+\ PR-\HER2+ (Not triple positive)
    SLN came back positive for metastatic cancer (surgeon who removed it said it appeared normal and was likely normal). And nipple pathology confirmed Paget’s disease.

    I realize that I’m supposed to have no expectations and that every cancer is different and that things with this disease are always changing. But I don’t know what results to trust or rely on any more. Now I’m researching all the nuances of this variety of BC and worried even more about treatment plans. Anyone else have pathology back yet and if so- did you get unexpected results?

    Also— my left drain (SLN side) is sooo painful when I “milk” it - it feels like a pipe cleaner is grinding in and out of my chest. Range is super limited. Right is healing very well- the contrast between the two is dramatic. Anyone experience that type of drain pain?


    appreciate hearing about your experiences.


    bar




  • HummingbirdAZ
    HummingbirdAZ Member Posts: 93
    edited August 2021
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    EminGA2018-- Thanks so much, feeling better every day (even snuck out yesterday and went to an antique store!)

    Chirodani- Welcome to a wonderful group of support! I bought a My Pillow roll and go size that has been perfect for the car, for resting in bed to elevate my arm slightly and as a neck rest while propped in bed. And, since it's Back to School time, I found a sherpa type bedrest pillow at Target for only $15 and it is 100% perfect for daytime--maybe even night time but I've been using just two pillows and the My Pillow at night. Good luck with your surgery.

    Barbojoy- Sorry your results aren't what you expected. This has me nervous now, my results are due back Wednesday. I research everything so will start looking at some of the possible scenarios. My only drain pain so far has been a severe pinching or "zap" that occurs from time to time. I think it's from the skin tightening at the exit point. I had axillary node dissection due to a malignant node, so my whole underarm area is sore to begin with. Between the numbness, tingling, soreness and then those zaps, it's pretty uncomfortable. Thankfully, the drain should come out Wednesday when I find out my path results.

    Bookpusher- How are you doing?

  • lw422
    lw422 Member Posts: 1,403
    edited August 2021
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    Hi Chirodani and welcome. I'm a bit surprised that you won't have an overnight stay (or more) with reconstruction. Are they installing tissue expanders or are you going direct implants or what?

    I don't think the shoes matter; they will likely ride you to the exit in a wheelchair, so some "outside shoes" that you wore to the hospital should be fine. (Or whatever is comfortable for you.) They will likely give you one of those small hospital pillows to pad the seatbelt on your ride home. If you prefer you could buy your own mastectomy pillow from Amazon or Etsy.

    As far as the wedge pillow; I'd say get the reading pillow and sit in it before surgery. See if you think you'll need more support or a wedge. We are all different with that stuff. I have an electric adjustable bed so I think I will be able to manage without a bunch of special pillows.

    Good luck with everything and let us know how it goes. Get that GS cookie apron ready to go!!

  • melbo
    melbo Member Posts: 266
    edited August 2021
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    I had my minor surgery today to remove the biopsy clip that should have been removed during my lumpectomy in December. Surgery was fine and I just have a small bandage under my left breast. They did general anesthesia because the surgeon said the clip was deep — but after surgery he told me it was close the skin. *shrug* it’s done now.

    The worst part of the whole thing was the mammogram wire placement before the surgery. It’s bad enough to get a regular mammogram, but then to be held there even longer while they place the wire just sucks. Luckily it’s not horribly painful, but it is deeply unpleasant.

    On the other hand, no drains or horrible binders after this surgery. I hope you all have smooth recoveries and that your drains come out as soon as possible, because those things are awful

  • NatureYogi
    NatureYogi Member Posts: 135
    edited August 2021
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    Chirodani-Welcome to the forum! I bought one of the car pillows and it has been very useful. I've used it in the car several times now and also to shield at home from my cat. She loves to lay on my chest. I wore flip flops home from hospital.

    Barbojoy-The drain area that is sore isn't real red is it? If it continues to be painful, you might want to call nurse at your Drs office. They may need to look at it and change the dressings. I'm sorry to hear about your path report, did they say what the next steps are?

    Hope everyone is doing well, keep us posted! I get to take a "real" shower today! I'm thrilled, they said to pat dry my incision area. I don't go back to surgeon for check up until Sept 8, so I get a break. Have a follow up with MO this Friday, I'll ask about port removal.

  • lw422
    lw422 Member Posts: 1,403
    edited August 2021
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    Melbo--I'm glad the clip removal went smoothly and hope you heal quickly. I'm having a "seed placement" before my surgery because they couldn't find the biopsy clip in my last US. I hope they can find it this time so the surgeon can get it out during surgery.

  • pamep
    pamep Member Posts: 66
    edited August 2021
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    It's been pretty quiet on this board. I hope everyone is doing okay.

    I had my post-op exam with my breast surgeon this morning. Incisions look good; no infection; Steristrips removed from my right underarm but kept at the lumpectomy site; breast swelling will go away with time. She said that she only removed 2 sentinel lymph nodes that were light blue from the dye. Pathology will be in early next week. Antibiotics (prophylactic) allowed to be stopped because I have no infection and have had adverse reactions to the meds. No rigorous activity or driving until next week.

    Apparently elective surgeries are being discontinued at my local hospital for the next month due to the current Covid outbreak. I feel lucky to have slipped under the wire last Friday afternoon. The cancer has been cut out of my body, to put it frankly, so I can breathe a little easier. This has not been easy, as we all know too well. I am so thankful that in my small town we have a experienced, female, breast specialty surgeon.

    Wishing everyone successful surgeries and positive outcomes.

  • sarahvancouverisland
    sarahvancouverisland Member Posts: 15
    edited August 2021
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    PamEP, where are you, if covid is affecting surgeries? That's horrible! But I'm glad you were able to sneak in before that happened.

    I've just joined the forum, had a lumpectomy four weeks ago but now going back in for a mastectomy this Thurs 12th. Margins weren't clear (cells were actually all over the place, apparently my initial biopsy moved cancer cells around leaving it unclear where the cancer cells have ended up) so it's safer to just do the whole boob this time. A little frightening considering it's a standard procedure, but I'm happy to be doing something final by having the whole boob chopped off.

    Hope everyone's recent surgeries have gone ok and you're healing well! How active has everyone managed to be post-single-mastectomy?

  • pamep
    pamep Member Posts: 66
    edited August 2021
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    I'm in Northern California. Sorry to hear that you are multifocal. My first biopsy surgery did not give clear margins so I went under a second time for wider margins and lymph node screening.

    This website is terrific for information and interaction. I have learned a lot here. My/Our hope is to be knowledgeable and clear of this silent disorder.

    I hope your August 12 surgery goes well for you.