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Topic: Lumpectomy Lounge....let's talk!

Forum: Surgery - Before, During, and After — Surgical options and helpful tips for recovery and side effects.

Posted on: Feb 19, 2013 09:35PM - edited Feb 26, 2013 12:57AM by ToriGirl

ToriGirl wrote:

WELCOME TO THE LUMPECTOMY LOUNGE!

I've searched and searched BC.org and couldn't find a specific post just for those of us who have had lumpectomies (unless there was one and it got buried).  So, I thought that it was about time that we had our own place that we can come to...where we can discuss, ask questions, tell stories, seek advice, give comfort, give high fives and do the happy dance...and just feel free to let out our thoughts about the things that we have all gone through (or all currently going through, or about to go through).

Some of you have just had lumpectomies..some of you lumpectomies plus radiation, others have had lumpectomies, chemo and radiation, and still others who have had the lumpectomy, chemo, radiation and hormonal therapy.  We've all got stories...and with those stories we have questions and concerns and this is the place to put them.....so we can hear from others that have "been there, done that" and can give us a different perspective on all of it.

Let's reach as many folks as we can...I know that there are many out there that are asking, " Is this normal?  Should this be numb?  How am I supposed to sleep after surgery? When does it get better?  Do I need to call the doctor? Should this feel like this?" How is the "new normal" going to feel?  "How am I going to get through the next mammogram or MRI?"

Maybe some of you need some reassurance, maybe some of you need to know that there are others of us out there that can help...and still maybe some of you just need to scream, "My doctor didn't tell me that!"or "This sucks!" or just some nice "choice" words...  

Don't worry...we get it...we understand it...

Weather you are waiting to have your surgery, just got a lumpectomy last week or you got one years ago...share your knowledge and experiences here...

There is no limit to what we can talk about!  :)

Ready?  GO!

"Sorrow carves the opening for joy later..." Dx 6/4/2010, IDC, 1cm, Stage IIA, 1/11 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Posts 28231 - 28239 (28,239 total)

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May 5, 2021 12:37AM ChiSandy wrote:

Take the 2 weeks. At the very least, do not make any commitments for that time period. Yes, I did drive 90 miles 2 weeks later to do a concert in Rockford--but I let other people carry my instruments. Otherwise, I pretty much did nothing in the interim except light shopping & going out to eat. Now is the time to call in as many favors as you can from friends & neighbors who've offered.

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- (IHC) Surgery 9/23/2015 Lumpectomy: Right Radiation Therapy 11/2/2015 3DCRT: Breast Hormonal Therapy 12/31/2015 Femara (letrozole)
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May 6, 2021 01:56PM Ashlyn525 wrote:

Hi Chi Sandy, do you still have the scar tissue around your cavity? Is it tender?

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May 6, 2021 02:08PM Ashlyn525 wrote:

Has anyone had Sentinel Node Biopsy Surgery and they were not able to get any lymph nodes?


Thank You!

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May 8, 2021 09:18PM ChiSandy wrote:

I still have scar tissue around the now-collapsed cavity, but it's not tender. I do sometimes wake up with axillary soreness on that side when I raise my arms, but my MO explained that's referred pain radiating from the arm muscles. It recedes w/in a few minutes of awakening. I had SNB during my lumpectomy, but they had to take 4 lymph nodes: only 2 were "sentinels," but the other 2 were attached, "along for the ride." All were negative.

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- (IHC) Surgery 9/23/2015 Lumpectomy: Right Radiation Therapy 11/2/2015 3DCRT: Breast Hormonal Therapy 12/31/2015 Femara (letrozole)
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May 10, 2021 02:25PM CallMeTenacious wrote:

I had surgery last April - lumpectomy (double) plus bilateral reduction/lift - followed by radiation and tamoxifen. All is fine and I physically feel reasonably well. I have my one year followup with my plastic surgeon this week and I am not happy with the way my breasts look. Due to the pandemic, I only saw the plastic surgeon once after surgery and then had one telemed with him. My issue is that I have "side boobs" -- heavy to the outer side and breast tissue bulge under my arms. My breast surgeon, radiation oncologist, medical oncologist and the breast nurse/practitioner (all women) say that my breasts look great.

I feel like he gave me old lady breasts! My plastic surgeon is 64 and said that all women our age have these. I may be 66 chronologically but I'm 45 in my head! I had ridiculously large, floppy breasts before the surgery but at least they weren't on my sides!

I'm not sure that I want to endure more surgery to correct them but not sure that I want to just accept them and move on. I hope this makes sense. Anyone else experience this or have thoughts?

Dx 1/10/2020, IDC, Left, <1cm, 0/4 nodes, ER+/PR-, HER2- Surgery 4/1/2020 Lumpectomy: Left; Lymph node removal: Sentinel Radiation Therapy Whole-breast: Breast Hormonal Therapy Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone)
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May 10, 2021 03:42PM quinnie wrote:

callmetenacious: I am sorry you did not get good outcomes from your lift. I also had surgery last April. A lumpectomy followed by breast lift and I am very happy with the result. Not perfect but look great with just a stretchy bra. Prior I had to wear underwire bras to lift up the girls and now I can wear regular bathing suits and bras. I found the surgery easy to recover from so if you feel you need revision, find another plastic surgeon,. I'm fortunate that my son is a PA at our hospital and he is able to refer me to best doctors. Good luck with your decision.

Dx 11/30/2007, DCIS, Right, 1cm, Stage 0, Grade 2, 0/0 nodes, ER-/PR- Dx 2/26/2020, IDC, Left, <1cm, Stage IA, Grade 1, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Radiation Therapy 5/13/2020 Whole-breast: Breast Hormonal Therapy 5/24/2020 Femara (letrozole) Radiation Therapy Whole-breast: Breast
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May 10, 2021 05:02PM - edited May 10, 2021 05:07PM by ChiSandy

callmetenaceous, I'm 70 and had a R lumpectomy at 64. Didn't have oncoplasty, but my surgeon did a great job--my cancer breast, albeit smaller (as it was even pre-op), looks round & perky, with my "normal" breast resembling a basset hound's ear and hanging nearly to my waist. I do have upper-arm "bat wings" (souvenir of a large & very intentional weight loss) but not the side-boob/axillary "dog-ears" you describe--something a lot of women who've had bilateral mastectomy w/o reconstruction report having encountered. Having gone through a couple of surgical eye procedures last summer to irradiate an ocular tumor, I've decided not to go through any elective surgeries not necessary to save/prolong my life, relieve pain or improve mobility. So I've scrapped plans for a reduction & lift on the left breast--just wear bras with cups big enough to accommodate the 2-cups-bigger "lefty" (Thelma) and pad "righty" (Louise) if need be. And as for skin-removal surgery? 3/4 sleeves, Bermudas or bike shorts, and Spanx will have to do.

"Full-coverage" (higher-sided) bras--wired or not--may be the way for you to go in the meantime, unless you want to & until you can get "the girls" trimmed on the side. HerRoom.com has a front-close bra called the Robin (by its house brand Ploomage) that didn't work for me because the sides came up high and I could fit a hand into the sides of each cup under my armpits. (And I am a 36I--even its G cups were too big on the sides). For the reason it didn't work for me, it might be great for you. Yes, it's underwire, but I've been wearing underwires since my mid-teens.

But are you sure the sides aren't swollen seromas after radiation? My R breast had a considerable side bulge for a couple of years after my rads, till my body resorbed the fluid and the seroma shrank to just a knot of scar tissue.

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- (IHC) Surgery 9/23/2015 Lumpectomy: Right Radiation Therapy 11/2/2015 3DCRT: Breast Hormonal Therapy 12/31/2015 Femara (letrozole)
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May 11, 2021 11:17AM CallMeTenacious wrote:

ChiSandy and quinnie, thanks for your comments.

I don't have residual swelling - it's just where the tissue was positioned. I did go to Nordstrom last week and the mastectomy fitter found some normal bras that hold the sides in. That actually makes me wonder if I'd be happier if I let the surgeon fix it. The side bulge is annoying during activity. The fitter was not able to find a sports bra that held it.

The PS is the one that everyone raves about doing the best work. My surgery was a bizarre, surreal experience due to Covid. I had less than 24 hours notice for the surgery and there was apparently a time limit on the surgery time. To further complicate it, my abdomen was still swollen from two robotic surgeries a few months earlier for ovarian cancer (all good now).

My appointment is on Thursday afternoon so I'll just be honest with him and see what he offers. Truthfully, I don't want to do anything that is going to require a lot of "down" time now that life is returning to normal. It's a dilemma!

ChiSandy, I am a former Chicagoan! Moved away 10 years ago. Miss so many things about Chicago!

Dx 1/10/2020, IDC, Left, <1cm, 0/4 nodes, ER+/PR-, HER2- Surgery 4/1/2020 Lumpectomy: Left; Lymph node removal: Sentinel Radiation Therapy Whole-breast: Breast Hormonal Therapy Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone)
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2 hours ago Stellawt57 wrote:

CallMeTenacious, I hear your concerns! After seeking a second opinion from another PS who recommended revision to remove the dog ears (skin cones) and reduce the side bulge, as it caused my breasts to look like a long roll of fat! The roll went from my arm pit to the breast bone on each side as I had reconstruction for my non cancer breast for symmetry. The recovery from the surgery was similar to my lumpectomy. Now my breasts have definition and has helped to improve my self image! I encourage you to get a second opinion. Thoughts are with you as you make your decision that’s right for you!


Dx 8/14/2018, IDC, Left, <1cm, Stage IA, Grade 3, 0/2 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 10/3/2018 Lumpectomy: Left; Lymph node removal: Sentinel, Underarm/Axillary; Reconstruction (left); Reconstruction (right) Radiation Therapy 10/3/2018 Hormonal Therapy 10/8/2018 Arimidex (anastrozole)

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