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Topic: Having surgery in my armpit tomorrow

Forum: Lymphedema — Risks, tips for prevention, and info about products that can address the symptoms of lymphedema.

Posted on: Jul 16, 2017 07:17PM

crystalphm wrote:

Needless to say I am worried. I had a discoloration about a half inch big, light tan, in my armpit that came on quickly, two months. And it was itchy. Three different doctors said "no problem" but the surgeon agreed to remove it because I eventually could nick it shaving.

It turns out to be melanoma and I am having surgery tomorrow for clear margins. This is about 1 inch from my mastectomy scar...right in my armpit. I did not have a LE flare from the biopsy, but I am worried about this more extensive surgery.

I will keep it very clean, rest with my arm on pillows above my head, pull on compression arm and hand before surgery, hydrate....anything else?

I called my therapist twice, no call back, This is not great area for LE therapists.

Thanks for any advice

Denise

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Jul 16, 2017 08:24PM Binney4 wrote:

Oh, Denise, so glad you caught this, and looking forward with you to clean margins and quick healing. You've got all the bases covered with the LE, but just keep an eye on everything afterward to check for any signs of infection (cellulitis), and get help immediately if you suspect trouble. Here's a quick review of what to look for:

http://www.stepup-speakout.org/Emergencies_and_Med...

Please let us know how you are when you're able!

Hugs,
Binney

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Jul 17, 2017 07:00PM crystalphm wrote:

Binny, Thank you for the information and for caring. You are an amazing woman. I did have the surgery, and am following all the guidelines. I will keep you posted as to how healing goes. Doctors really are clueless about LE, he said, "well, I am not real close to lymph nodes so you will have no problems". Oh well. It is a big incision, and I am going to be using clorahex cleaner on it twice a day, plus I am on keflex for a week.

Thanks again!

Denise

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Jul 17, 2017 10:17PM SpecialK wrote:

crystalphm - glad you are doing well, hope that continues! I am right there with you - having surgery on Wed for an infiltrating basal cell carcinoma on my LE arm shoulder. Expecting about a 3-4 inch incision, and the purpose is for a clear margin. This is a recurrence but in the six months since it was originally removed it changed from a superficial to an infiltrating. I see my LE PT tomorrow and on Thursday, and my derm is aware of my breast cancer and positive nodes on that same side. I am a little nervous but my arm is in the best shape it has been in for a while, and I will take all precautions.

BMX w/ TE 11/1/10, ALND 12/6/10. 14 additional surgeries. TCHx6 2/17-6/2/11. Herceptin until 1/19/12. Femara 8/1/11, Arimidex 6/20/12, back to Femara 6/18/13-present. Dx 9/27/2010, IDC, Right, 2cm, Stage IIB, Grade 3, 2/14 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+ (IHC) Dx 9/27/2010, DCIS, Stage 0, Grade 3
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Jul 17, 2017 10:29PM ChiSandy wrote:

Hugs to you, SpecialK and Denise.

Diagnosed at 64 on routine annual mammo, no lump. OncotypeDX 16. I cried because I had no shoes...but then again, I won’t get blisters.... Dx 9/9/2015, IDC, Right, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 2, 0/4 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 9/23/2015 Lumpectomy: Right Radiation Therapy 11/2/2015 3DCRT: Breast Hormonal Therapy 12/31/2015 Femara (letrozole)
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Jul 17, 2017 10:34PM SpecialK wrote:

chisandy - thanks!

BMX w/ TE 11/1/10, ALND 12/6/10. 14 additional surgeries. TCHx6 2/17-6/2/11. Herceptin until 1/19/12. Femara 8/1/11, Arimidex 6/20/12, back to Femara 6/18/13-present. Dx 9/27/2010, IDC, Right, 2cm, Stage IIB, Grade 3, 2/14 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+ (IHC) Dx 9/27/2010, DCIS, Stage 0, Grade 3
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Jul 18, 2017 01:09PM Binney4 wrote:

Denise, so glad that's behind you and the news is good. Take it easy--and don't skimp on the chocolate!

SpecialK, goodness, this is beginning to sound like an epidemic! You'll be on my mind tomorrow, for sure. Let us know how it goes, please.

Both of you, be sure to keep the pain in good control as you heal, as pain adds to the lymph-flow burden.

Gentle hugs,
Binney

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