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Topic: Recovery Time For Nipple Reconstruction

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

Posted on: Feb 24, 2011 02:33AM

wasin wrote:

Hi,

I'm getting my nipple reconstruction surgery(office procedure) in May.  The nurse told me that I can take a shower after 2 days.  Does anyone know how long the recovery time is for this procedure?

I'm getting the nipples created from my breast skin by twisting and plan to have the areolas tatooed later.  Also, how long would I need to wear a surgical bra after this procedure?

 Thank you for your inputs!

hanna

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Feb 24, 2011 03:22AM geysermom wrote:

I had my nipple reconstruction 4 weeks ago and it sounds like the same procedure that you are going to have. 

I was not allowed to shower for 48 hours, stitches were removed after 2 weeks and I had to wear "supportive dressings" which the PS considered gauze pads with holes cut in them for 4 weeks.

The supportive dressings are supposed to keep the nipples projecting as they heal.  I ended up using nursing pads with holes cut in them since they are circular and less obvious under clothing.  My PS did not care if I wore a bra or not.  I wore a bra 24/7 because I was more comfortable in one.  I tried a lot of different types (I have the usual mastectomy/recon collection) and found a loose non-underwire was most comfortable. 

Bilateral Prophylactic Mastectomies for Diffuse ADH Dx 12/2007, Stage 0
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Feb 24, 2011 03:29AM GG27 wrote:

I had mine done about 4 weeks ago & am still wearing my pads with holes cut in, I had dissolving stitches so no need to get them removed.  I have an appt with PS today, hopefully I can stop wearing these pads.  It hasn't been a chore though, you have them done, make sure you put the pads on & go about your day. 

Dx 10/2008, IDC, Both breasts, 3cm, Stage IIB, Grade 2, 3/9 nodes, mets, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 1/8/2009 Lymph node removal; Mastectomy: Left, Right Chemotherapy 2/1/2009 Other Radiation Therapy 7/5/2009 Whole-breast: Breast, Lymph nodes Hormonal Therapy 9/6/2009 Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone) Dx 5/14/2014, IDC, Both breasts, Stage IV, metastasized to bone, 9/20 nodes, mets, ER+/PR+, HER2- Hormonal Therapy 5/19/2014 Arimidex (anastrozole) Hormonal Therapy Faslodex (fulvestrant) Radiation Therapy External: Bone Hormonal Therapy Femara (letrozole) Targeted Therapy Ibrance (palbociclib)
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Feb 24, 2011 04:07AM wasin wrote:

Wow.. are you getting your areola totooed?  Do you know if there is another waiting time after the 4 weeks are done before scheduling to have areola totooed?

I've been feeling so frustrated with my PS(although he's a top doctor w/ 23 yrs of experience) because he doesn't spend time explaining about the next procedures.  He's always so busy to rush out as soon as I stop asking questions.  So I ended up calling his nurse alot and I feel like I'm annoying her.  Thank you for your input.  I have couple of events coming up one in May and one in July and I'm trying to work out the schedule so that I don't have to miss them..

Do you get to talk to your PS on the phone whenever you have questions?

My PS has several nurses but the problem is that they don't give the same information.

I have already scheduled for nipple surgery in May but I may have to change the date.

Thank you for your input. 

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Feb 24, 2011 04:30AM GG27 wrote:

My PS asked me to wait til 3 months post nip reconstruction before getting tats, I've had my appt since then, but I'm not getting my tats done by him, I'm getting them done in April at a studio which was highly recommended here.  (don't get me started on this frustrating part of my reconstruction)

Dx 10/2008, IDC, Both breasts, 3cm, Stage IIB, Grade 2, 3/9 nodes, mets, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 1/8/2009 Lymph node removal; Mastectomy: Left, Right Chemotherapy 2/1/2009 Other Radiation Therapy 7/5/2009 Whole-breast: Breast, Lymph nodes Hormonal Therapy 9/6/2009 Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone) Dx 5/14/2014, IDC, Both breasts, Stage IV, metastasized to bone, 9/20 nodes, mets, ER+/PR+, HER2- Hormonal Therapy 5/19/2014 Arimidex (anastrozole) Hormonal Therapy Faslodex (fulvestrant) Radiation Therapy External: Bone Hormonal Therapy Femara (letrozole) Targeted Therapy Ibrance (palbociclib)
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Feb 24, 2011 07:27AM She wrote:

I'm at 3 weeks, same procedure, but I also had fat grafting.  My sutures are dissolving so no need for removal.  Just started wearing a bra today, using nursing pads with a hole and complression bra as I have truncal LE and now fipple LE.  Anyone else have this happen?  I've never heard of it before and neither has my PS so we're in new terrority.  Sheesh fipple LE.  Having a really big 'poor me' today.  No tatts for at least 3 months.

Not all PS use the same tatt techniques, some put the ink/dye on the open tissue prior to suturing and finish up 2-3 months later; others use the regular method.

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Feb 24, 2011 08:56AM wasin wrote:

Some time ago my nurse told me that I would need to wait about a month to get areola tattooed after the nipple surgery, but I noticed the nurses have been giving me inconsistent information.

I guess I should average around 2-3 months waiting period before tattooing.  

Thank you for sharing your insight! 

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Feb 26, 2011 12:00PM geysermom wrote:

I had my 4 week post fipple visit with my PS today and he told me I could have the tattoos done in 6 weeks which would be 2 1/2 months after the fipple surgery.

Bilateral Prophylactic Mastectomies for Diffuse ADH Dx 12/2007, Stage 0
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Feb 27, 2011 10:50AM wasin wrote:

Did you have to wear a surgical bra for all 4 wks?  I'm scheduled to have a nipple reconstruction on early May and have an event to attend on the 20th.  I was wondering if I can wear my sports bra for few days during the event.  I tried to call my nurse to ask this question but she still hasn't returned my call yet..

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Feb 28, 2011 02:12AM 2Xsenough wrote:

She--I'm so sorry you ended up with with LE. Not fair. I hope the condition clears up soon.

Question. Has anyone had this kind of twisted fipple recon on radiated skin? I don't have any new skin flaps covering my foobs, just the thin rad skin from radiation 15 years ago. Then I had a recurrance. I healed well after my mx and lat flap recon last year and now I'm wanting to finish the process and have fipples. My rad side skin still has a blueish cast, especially on the lower pole.

Any insight appreciated.

Bobbi 

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Feb 28, 2011 12:01PM Lynkoura wrote:

These posts are really helpful. I'm hoping for nipples in June and it is really good to hear the range of experiences. Thanks to all posters and please keep posting. I'd also like some feedback from people that have had nipples created using this method as to whether they think the whole nipple process was worth it.

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Feb 28, 2011 01:29PM DiDel wrote:

I am having the same procedure in April so I find all your comments very helpful.

My PS is great! I have all his numbers and email him anytime I have a question. I hate when you can't get a hold of your doc. You need a secret password to get through to my GYN.

UGH I can't wait to be done with the recon. So far I feel so good about everything and the nip is just the CHERRY on the sundae!!! LOL

Good luck to all

Diane

Dx 11/12/2009, IDC, Right, 2cm, Stage IIA, Grade 2, 0/8 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- (FISH) Surgery 12/22/2009 Mastectomy: Right Chemotherapy 3/16/2010 Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide), Taxotere (docetaxel) Hormonal Therapy 8/14/2010 Dx 10/28/2015, IDC, Right, <1cm, Stage IA, Grade 1, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 11/8/2015 Lumpectomy: Right Radiation Therapy 1/31/2016 3DCRT: Chest wall
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Mar 1, 2011 02:51AM wasin wrote:

DiDel, you're lucky that you can feel free to call or email or PS.

 My PS seems pretty good at what he does but I'm suppose to call his nurses with any questions unlike your PS.  As for me, I finally got in touch w/ my nurse and she said I would have to wear a surgical bra w/ gauges for 2 wks and then I can start wearing sports bra.  I should be done w/ all the procedures by July or Aug.  

Good luck w/ your procedure on April!

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Jul 4, 2013 10:13AM isadopt wrote:

Hi ladies, 

I need to know how long it takes to recover from nipple reconstruction, how long after I can go back to work and feel normal. Thanks

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Jul 4, 2013 02:17PM cascader wrote:

Hi, I had my nipple recon 8 weeks ago I don't know what type of recon you have had but I had a Sgap breast and a C-V flap for nipple. Will you have this done in office, out patient? No real recovery time, no pain as this area is pretty much numb. Every doc has their own protocol regarding nip protection/ bandages. I wore a plastic dome type thing for 8 weeks. You should be able to go back to work right away if that is all you are having done.

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May 8, 2014 04:03PM browniefranks wrote:

JUst got Nipple reconstruction yesterday how soon can I sleep on my face? 

Dx 3/3/2011, IDC, 2cm, Stage IIA, Grade 2, 0/3 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 3/23/2011 Lymph node removal: Right, Sentinel Surgery 3/23/2011 Lumpectomy: Right Chemotherapy 4/5/2011 Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide), Taxotere (docetaxel) Radiation Therapy 9/4/2011 3DCRT: Breast Hormonal Therapy 1/12/2012 Surgery 1/16/2014 Mastectomy: Left, Right Surgery 1/16/2014 Reconstruction (left): DIEP flap; Reconstruction (right): DIEP flap Surgery 5/8/2014 Reconstruction (left): Nipple reconstruction; Reconstruction (right): Nipple reconstruction

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