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Jan 3, 2019 01:44PM
Jan 4, 2019 10:11AM
Thanks to all of you, for support and encouragement and good vibes, and for sharing all of your experiences and knowledge, and cheering me on through my anxiety about this.
Day One After Exchange: I had my exchange yesterday, January 2, at 12:15 p.m. Home by 4 p.m. Anesthesiologist was very thoughtful about working to reduce my wake-up nausea, which I've usually had; not this time! He said he'd use two meds during anesthesia that would help (Phenergan + Zofran). No guarantees, he said, because everyone's different. But, whatever he put in the cocktail, it really worked. I also super-hydrated the day before surgery, and anesthesiologist agreed with that being a help also for reducing nausea. Surgery was 12:15, and I didn't eat after midnight night before, but I was allowed BLACK coffee + water until 8:45 a.m. which was helpful morning-of.
Anxiety help: I asked for something to keep me calm--they gave me 5 mg Valium as soon as they took me to the pre-surgery prep area, and it was oral, not IV. So, for the next 45 min before surgery, I felt relaxed and much less anxious than I would have been without this nice assist! It's bad enough to go through all this trauma, and I decided that a tiny mood-assist would be appropriate, and both doctors and RN husband totally agreed.
Surgery and size: PS took out TE's and put in the implants. Also took out extra skin on left side to match right side's size. Right side expanded less, because of 2003 radiation, so I asked PS to make left side smaller to match right side. It's expected that, as PS describes it, "they'll be sisters, not twins." He has warned that contracture is more likely on right side than for other people--that's just a post-radiation surgery fact. I'm hoping for a sort-of match. They'll be rather petite; size is not something I can choose. Stretching just was limited on right side, and fills became horribly uncomfortable, so I stopped at that point. Probably will end up a B cup, possibly C.
Nausea: My husband is an RN, and he's guiding all of my med timing. We have Phenergan + Zofran at home, and I did use them for the first 15 hours or so, and now I think I'm past the post-anesthesia nausea. Throwing up + oral pain meds = a terrible plan, right? Anyway, so far, so good.
Bandages: Today I go to PS office for an RN to remove wrapping. After surgery, I was sent home with a huge ACE wrap around foobs. Today, that will be removed, down to steri-strips, I assume, and supposedly I'll be cleared to take showers now. No drains, yay!!! Lots of swelling, of course. I'm trying to sleep in a chest-uphill position, to help with that. Also, to be able to sleep on my back, I'm using small pillows under arms, and a travel pillow around my neck, plus a whole other assortment of possible pillow options!
Meds: There's an antibiotic for 5 days (every 8 hours). I need my Oxycodone for a few days, I'm also taking stool softener (Colace) + also Senna + also a few prunes each day because of that. I'm taking Tylenol every 2-3 hours between Oxy doses. Will eventually taper off Oxy, in 5 days or so is expected. We wrote down a schedule for managing all this, and that includes alarms a couple of times in the night. Not Fun, but that way I'm staying comfortable. Nurse-husband will take care of me for 5 days, then he'll go back to work. I'm up and about today. Still sleepy from anesthesia and a bit groggy because of Oxy on board, but pain level is okay with Oxycodone.
Hydration - I'm drinking as much water as I can get down for a few days. Helps to clear out anesthesia grogginess and helps with healing and helps all meds. be absorbed and work sooner.
Food: first 24 hours after surgery, easy-to-digest things, of course. For me, that was tomato soup + toast, and I had oatmeal for breakfast. Now I'll start adding extra protein + antioxidants for healing, and continue that for a month or so, as per dr. guidelines.
Implants: my PS says they're "smooth round," and although they're the "cohesive" version of Natrelle's smooth rounds, they're not the "textured anatomical," according to my PS and the online Allergan product catalog. The names of the Allergan models are confusing, but this is what I have in me:
Allergan Natrelle Inspiration Cohesive
SCX-400 (volume=400 ccs)
I chose to not have textured anatomical implants, for various reasons. One is (perhaps illogically) the 1/30,000 risk of an associated lymphoma. Obviously, that's practically zero, but not quite zero. The truth is, I listened to my DD. My daughter is a Nurse Practitioner, and she wanted me to choose lowest-possible risk since there was an option. All implants have risks, but that particular one is one I can reduce by having "smooth round." My PS thinks that textured anatomicals have a more "natural look," and that they settle in well. On the other hand, a writer on this forum was more comfortable when she switched from textured to smooth.
Glad to have this surgery behind me, and the new Foobs in front of me. :-)
3/2003, IDC, Right, <1cm, Stage IA, 0/2 nodes, ER+, HER2-
6/9/2003 3DCRT: Breast
8/7/2003 Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone)
4/25/2018, IDC, Right, <1cm, Stage IIA, Grade 3, 0/2 nodes, ER+/PR-, HER2-
5/22/2018 Lymph node removal: Right, Sentinel; Mastectomy: Left, Right; Prophylactic mastectomy: Left; Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement
6/25/2018 Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide), Taxotere (docetaxel)
11/6/2018 Arimidex (anastrozole)
1/2/2019 Reconstruction (left): Silicone implant; Reconstruction (right): Silicone implant