If you've had or will be having a mastectomy (or in some cases, lumpectomy), you're likely facing decisions about whether or not to have breast reconstruction, and if so, what type and when. Deciding whether or not to have a breast reconstructed is a very personal choice. Take the time you need to learn about how breast reconstruction might affect you, both emotionally and physically, before you decide to have the surgery.
Learn about different surgical options and the medical and personal issues around breast reconstruction.
Intro medically reviewed by: Brian Wojciechowski, M.D.
Last review date: November 22, 2020
Posted on: Jan 15, 2012 11:30PM
I've had my current set of implants....mentor silicone implants for 3 1/2 years now...and there are times I feel like I want to claw my chest off...this is mostly in the evening....I haven't been to the PS in 1 1/2 years (or is it 2 1/2 years) and have no plans to make an appt for him to just look at them and say yup, they are still symmetrical....don't get me wrong, I like my PS, just not into medical appt anymore (only see my onc)....so is this due to the implants? or is it just me....even though there is "no feeling", there are times I'm just so itchy....also, my back gets itcy as well....I now its nothing to worry about...more its just annoying...
Posts 1 - 30 (47 total)
Jan 16, 2012 08:08AM Kate33 wrote:
karen- I know that itching feeling and it can be maddening! The itch you can't scratch. I was told by my PS that it is caused by nerves regenerating. When it was at its worst my GP prescribed Gabapentin which helps with nerve pain. (It also worked great for my insomnia- bonus!) Not sure if it would be nerve issues for you, this many years out, but I guess it's possible. I did notice mine got a lot better after I had fat grafting done. Not sure why, though.
Jan 16, 2012 09:24AM DocBabs wrote:
I'm about 5 months post exchange and lately I have been having some fierce itching that scratching does nothing for. Thankfully it's not that often. If it were I think I'd go mad!
Jan 16, 2012 10:54AM karen1956 wrote:
Aza...I don't wear a bra....no reason to....so why bother!!! I tend to wear cotton cami's and yes some times the fabric bothers me...but it doesn't make me itchy....the itching is worse at night.....its mostly at the top side of the foob...the incision of the BC side is underneath from the exhcange and recvisions....so its not the incision that is itchy....if I know for sure that this was from the implants, part of me would have them taken out and just be flat....at this point in my life I just couldn't care about boobs...or the lack of them....well that's not true as I look at my 13 yo DD and think, she has more boobs than me and she is still only a size AA.....but they are real!!!! so yes, I guess I am bothered by the lack of boobs, but since I can't have my old saggy middle age ones, nothing else is real!!!
Jan 17, 2012 10:28AM Sassa wrote:
I am two years out from exchange and I still itch. I know it is from nerve regeneration. I also just had my areolas and nipples done last March so I know I am also having nerve regeneration from that procedure .
Jan 17, 2012 11:07AM SusansGarden wrote:
I get the itching once in awhile too. And it is also the "itch you can't scratch" ... it's where I have no feeling. I'm 1 year out so assuming it's the nerve regeneration. My PS says it can take as long as 3 years.
Jan 17, 2012 12:14PM TifJ wrote:
Me too. I had a right mx and sometimes it drives me nuts it itches so bad, but it is inside so no amount of scatching helps. Also, I am very itchy around my back where it is bit numb, but scratching there helps. It's just weird why it itches in the same place all the time. I sympathize with you!!
Jan 20, 2012 04:02PM chrissilini wrote:
I wonder if it's the same thing I'm feeling with tissue expanders. I had my first fill yesterday and on one side there is a spot that itches from the inside. Hope I don't go nuts.
Jan 20, 2012 04:07PM Beesie wrote:
I'm 5 1/2 years out from getting my implant and I still itch like crazy sometimes. It doesn't happen quite as often as during the first couple of years but at this point I figure that it's never going to go away. There are times when it drives me absolutely nuts.
Phantom itching. As far as I know, there's not much you can do about it.
Jan 20, 2012 07:32PM Iz_and_Lys_Mum wrote:
i soent half of this evening absentmindedly scratching my foob in a restaurant, before realising it probably looked pretty weird to anyone who didnt know it was fake. Oops :-). ive been told its just the nerves regenerating too, but havent really found anything to help. A warm wheat pack takes my mind off it sometimes.
Mar 17, 2014 11:38PM casseddy wrote:
I recently have been scratching like mad. I am 6 years out and this is recent. I need to make an appointment with my PS to find out what is going on. I have silicone so cannot imagine that they would be leaking. It is driving me crazy!
Nov 18, 2014 10:12AM jeannajlo wrote:
oh man mine itch a lot and I'm 5 years out! Maddening is a good word for it. I don't understand it and its been happening for me since the beginning. When I asked my PS about he he acted as if I were nuts! I figured I just had to live with it but if anyone knows of options please do tell!
Nov 18, 2014 01:46PM Moderators wrote:
HI jeanna, Welcome to the BCO community. We are so happy that you reached out to this supportive and informed group who can encourage and share personal experiences to help ease the way for so many. We notice that this particular topic has not been active since March. Perhaps you can start a new topic with your questions to see if you get some responses. Let us know if you need help. The Mods
Jan 31, 2018 08:58AM Nettle wrote:
I am just 10 weeks post reconstruction and until last night all was going well! But now I can completely relate to your 'clawing' to relieve the itching. It is unbearable and the only reassurance is that it seems it is 'normal'. I have tried ice pack, antihistamine cream and tablet and analgesic cream! Just hope it goes as quickly as it came. Thank you for sharing your story as although it doesn't provide an answer at least it provides reassurance!
Feb 2, 2018 02:14AM Rjsmom1231 wrote:
I am 10 years out of having a double mastectomy and have had a few boughts of this phantom itching. It’s only on my left side but actually sent me to ER when I couldn’t get any relief. I made an appt with Dermatologist first, after suffering for two days and nights! I actually made my skin bleed from trying to scratch! Benadryl didn’t help and antihistamine Derm provided made it worse! Hence the ER visit. After IV Benadryl, steroids and pain meds it stopped. I had just had foot surgery and was on Xaralto, we thought maybe a reaction? But here I am again having the same itch 2 years later!! It’s maddening! I’m trying the back scratching as suggested with little relief. I wonder if the stress does have something to do with it. It’s nice to know I’m not alone and crazy. I wish we could figure out a true fix. Thanks ladies
Feb 14, 2018 08:34PM krhoton wrote:
I'm so sorry you all are having this problem too, but glad to know I'm not the only one. I am 8 years out and still have the annoying itching. Night time is the worse. My doctor also acted like I was crazy when I told him that they itch all the time. He said he has never heard of anyone's itching! I noticed that when I was on hydrocodone, it made the itching worse! I may go back to doctor and try the Botox injections again. They didn't help the first time, but my doctor suggested I try it again.
Feb 14, 2018 09:07PM Lula73 wrote:
Vagisil cream works wonders for the itch. It has the same active ingredient (20% Benzocaine) in it as Lanacane had in it. However Lanacane is only sold outside the US now. All the anti-itch creams in US are anti-histamine based with or without a very low dose of a mild analgesic. Unfortunately our itch is not a histamine reaction so they typically don’t work well. My big itch problem is my mid to upper back in the evenings. It’s unbearable and you can’t scratch it hard enough or long enough and it makes me want to jump out of my skin it’s so wicked. I get relief within seconds of applying the Vagisil cream.
Feb 21, 2018 06:30PM Racheybaby358 wrote:
I have the same problem! And some nights I want to just go to the ER and get some relief! I have contacted my surgeon and playing phone tag the past week but I’m nervous what can be done! What was your outcome? I live across the country now from my original surgeon so I’m not sure if I should fly down to see him or find one in the New York Metro area. I’m nervous it’s going to be a huge expense and have to have it removed and still have the problem. If you could share any updates I’d really appreciate it
Feb 21, 2018 07:22PM Peacetoallcuzweneedit wrote:
Mine itch sporadically...was told it was nerves regenerating...made me a little nuts...my exchange was in Nov - and this did not start until last month.....I was in the grocery store and could not help but scratch and scratch and scratch....I applied a cold washcloth when I got home and tried to meditate (ok slow deep breaths) to ease it....it subsided but the episodes have continued...just not daily...
Feb 22, 2018 12:25PM Racheybaby358 wrote:
Mine started out sporadically, then the past few months became more constant and now I'm in dire pain. I also noticed that the underside of my boob has a lot of veins showing which weren't previously, and if it's not supported in a bra it feels like a cement brick being held up by the thinnest part of skin. I"m losing my mind! Waiting to hear back from my plastic surgeon and have plastic surgeons who also specialize in peripheral nerve pain on deck as well. I hope yours doesn't get to this point!
May 10, 2018 02:26PM Gld2bhere wrote:
I had a bilateral mastectomy 9 1/2 years ago. At the time I had tram flap reconstruction on both breasts. I had cancer in the left breast only, but chose to be proactive. The radiation and chemo came afterwords and only my left breast was radiated. The radiation ruined the tram flap on the left and had to be removed. I then had a latissimus dorsi flap surgery. There was not enough fat from my back to make the breast large enough, so a tissue expander and then asilicone implant was also inserted. Even after 9 1/2 years my left breast itches inside so badly that I cannot sleep at night and recently I have taken to sleeping with a heating pad. I have also noticed that my upper back itches so bad at night that I keep a back scratcher beside my bed. I have tried all sorts of anti-itch cream and nothing seems to work. I am glad to know that I am not the only one who is experiencing this because I thought I was starting to lose my mind. I don't have an implant on my right breast, only tummy fat so there is no itching EVER. I also never experienced itching after the latissimus dorsi flap on the left until after the silicone implant was added. I wish I had never gotten an implant. I have had so many surgeries and been to so many doctors for so many years that I don't want to go back to a plastic surgeon again.
Mar 25, 2019 03:18PM Cdh9356 wrote:
I am 18 years post lift and implant surgery. I have had this itch in one boob I think the whole time. The skin there has no feeling so I literally have to pinch to scratch it. I recently had a mammogram and they found a mass on that breast. I have a biopsy Wednesday.
May 29, 2019 09:19PM Bethers wrote:
Me too!!!! It’s extremely difficult to ignore even around other people. It happens to me at random times- early morning in bed, during the day, whenever. It’s a dead numb then jolts of itch. Nothing helps. It’s only on one side. I’ve had my saline implants for four years but it also happened previously with silicone. My breast tissue seems to be contracting
Jul 19, 2019 04:28AM Seaweni wrote:
Itchy Boobs over 2 years after Lift
Over two years ago I had a breast lift. I have to say my doctor was extremely good. Believe it or not Beverly Hills is the place to go to have any procedures done. There are so many professionals out there with their own surgery centers. Which is a plus regarding pricing . I found them to be about 50% cheaper than anywhere else in the United States Just an FYI. (Beverly Hills Surgery Cente).
I was never informed there would be itching. When the stitches were coming out, as well the internal stitches were kind of coming out I experience a slight itch. My nipples never itched and never were a problem. It ihas been 2 years now, and underneath itches so bad that I am up in the middle of the night researching this.I had a lollipop procedure. However it is not my scar that itches. Itis the skin underneath where the underwire hits. It itches all the way across, except for the spot where the scar is.
Who would have thought over 2 years later I would have an issue. It is the scratch you cannot itch.and I've noticed this in the last couple of weeks . Sense than its becoming more frequent.it's not the bra it's not the laundry detergent, it's not allergies it's not the underwire bra. I don't know what it is. I've read where it's thought to be nerve regeneration. If that is the case so be it. But does anybody have any suggestions on how to relieve this itching. Or how long it's going to last. Help I can't deal with this.
Jul 19, 2019 07:29AM L8Blmr wrote:
Seaweni, sorry to hear about the itching problem and after 2 years, too!? My son is a PA for an orthapedic surgeon. They recommend 500mg Vit. C and 500mg B-Complex to expedite nerve regeneration after surgery. I started it after my BMX and chemo. I have had no itching problem and the crazy nerve firings across my chest only lasted 4-6 months. Can't hurt to try it. Also, I don't wear underwire bras anymore unless it's a special occasion and the dress requires the lift. Good luck with finding a remedy.
Jul 23, 2019 09:40PM Mackeyl wrote:
I have nerve pain and itching sometimes it feels like they areitching with pins and needles from the inside. I had my bilateral mastectomy the end of April. My PS prescribed me something for it, which calms it but when the itching starts I found that lightly rubbing lotion on then calms the itching and it will stop. My PS said it is because I am stimulating the nerves. I use Cocoa butter. It may help.