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All TopicsForum: Breast Reconstruction → Topic: DIEP Breast Feeling/Sensation/Stages

Topic: DIEP Breast Feeling/Sensation/Stages

Forum: Breast Reconstruction — Is it right for you? Discuss timing and various procedures and techniques.

Posted on: Dec 1, 2009 12:30AM

cleomoon wrote:

Hi I am seeing PS to discuss DIEP next week. What do your reconstructed breasts feel like?

Also what happens in Stage II? I am thinking of doing nipple/skin sparing. Is there always more surgery than doing the nipple reconstruction after immediate DIEPS?

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Dec 1, 2009 07:14AM muttnut wrote:

Hi, Cleomoon,

I had a uni DIEP in May, and had revision almost 2 weeks ago.  The reconstructed breast feels much like a real breast to the hand.  However, it is almost completely numb.  I think there are a few who didn't need the revision (stage 2), but most do.  It's kind of like a rough draft, and then the finished product.  My stage one was a bit too low and too wide, with divots.  At stage 2 he fixed the shape and placement.  He will do the nipple in another 2-3 months.  He wanted to make sure that everything was right after stage 2 so that the nipple would for sure be placed correctly. If you can do nipple sparing, that would be great.  Talk to the PS as well as the breast surgeon to see what they think.  There are pictures on TimTams site of DIEP reconstruction, including mine after stage 1and again after stage 2.  If you have been on the boards for a while, you can PM TimTam and she will tell you how to get on the site. She protects all of us who post by being pretty strict about who she lets access it. 

Life is uncertain - eat dessert first! Dx 2/19/2008, IDC, 2cm, Stage IIA, Grade 2, 3/13 nodes, ER-/PR-, HER2-
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Dec 1, 2009 10:56AM SandyinSoCal wrote:

I know of a woman who had bilateral prophylactic nipple sparing mastectomy and DIEP in NOLA, and didn't need or want a stage II.   She's done and other than a vertical scar from the bottom of her areola to the inframmary crease (usually mostly hidden in the shadow under the breast) you'd never know she'd had mastectomy.  I saw my oncologist yesterday and he wants to make a movie about how DIEP breasts move just like a real breast, because he feels that photos don't show the whole story about how genuinely like the originals they are. 

I am wonderfully made to do ExtraOrdinary things! (www.girleo.com) Dx 5/22/2007, IDC, <1cm, Stage I, Grade 3, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Dec 1, 2009 03:23PM cleomoon wrote:

I wanted to research DIEP more fully before deciding to go the non reconstruction route. If touching your big toe has more sensation/tickling throughout the body as compared to a reconstructed breast for me, then I most likely will go back to my original plan and go flat. So is touching your big toe more stimulating than touching your breasts? I know weird question, but I really am trying to get a handle on the sensation piece. If my partner holds my breast in her hand, what will that feel like for me. I really don't care about appearance of the breast to the outside or when I look in the mirror.

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Dec 1, 2009 03:33PM 2z54 wrote:


If you get a skin-sparing blm, you will still feel your breasts because the skin is still your own skin. I would have to say I have way more feeling in my new DIEP foobs than I ever had in my big toe, except maybe when I stubbed it!   I'm going to have stage 2 in a few months, which should make them look much better. I'm very glad that I was a candidate for DIEP.

I'm sure you'll make the decision that works best for you. Good luck on the journey!


Dx 7/23/2008, IDC, 3cm, Stage II, Grade 3, 0/3 nodes, ER-/PR-, HER2-
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Dec 1, 2009 05:39PM LeeMcC wrote:

I had MX on right and PMX on left with immediate DIEP in September. It was skin-sparring, but not nipple-sparing because it's too risky for cancer to be close to the nipple. I am 10 weeks out ... and at 3-4 weeks I already had lots of feeling back in both breasts (except for the nipple). Because it's your own skin, you will keep the sensation/feeling. It's the nipple that will no longer have any sensation. BTW, my doc gave me new nipples at Stage 1, so that was very cool! (Dr Paul Allen was the assist.) The left boob looks great!  He has to fix the right nipple cause it healed as an "innie." My Stage 2 is Dec. 29.

The boobs are soft and warm and they move. Even better is that they now are perky and stand up on their own -- not the 47-yr-old boobs that sagged I had cut off! I love my new profile.

Good luck!


7/09; LCIS/DCIS 5 cm & IDC 4mm , ER+ PR+ Her2-; 9/09 BMX w/DIEP by Dr Craigie in Charleston, SC Dx 7/21/2009, IDC, <1cm, Stage I, Grade 2, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Dec 1, 2009 07:50PM trishK_ wrote:

I had my DIEP flap surgery on both sides. I had nipple sparing on my left and will have my nipple reconstruction on 12/23! There was one surgery 2 months ago that revised my breasts. My PS went in to even out and make sure they were symetrical. My last surgery will also revise my stomach scar which has what they call "dog ears", it is a simple correction they do after your scar heals to even out the ends so the scar lays flat.

 I have to admit i am not thrilled with my stomach scar, i am 40 and prior to this i had a pretty tummy. but i figure that i will save up and do lazer scar removal down the road. It is really effective!

 AFter the nipple recon, they will then do the tattoo which is not an actual surgery. I am looking forward to having two nipples again! They will tatoo my saved nipple to match the new one. I have some bad scarring on my saved nipple from teh surgery. So i will end up with a matching set! ha ha

I have to say, i was small to start, so i like my small perky new foobs! They do have the feel and bounce of my old boobs, just a little more upright now! :)

 Good Luck!

Let go and let GOD! Dx 4/16/2009, IDC, 1cm, Stage IIA, 3/16 nodes, ER+/PR-, HER2+
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Dec 1, 2009 11:25PM cleomoon wrote:

Thanks you all :) Small an perky sounds good to me. Now that I am in my 40's I see the droop and well I wont miss that at all.

Warm Holiday Hugs to you all.

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