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Topic: when to take a shower after lumpectomy ?

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

Posted on: Nov 12, 2019 08:29PM

fac03 wrote:

Hi,

I had a lumpectomy and lymph node dissection on Monday, my surgeon suggested to remove the gauge and take shower on Wednesday, she suggested that I let the water run though the operation area. I am scare as I read about shower shirt etc.. I am wondering what were some of your experiences?

This morning I woke up to find my fingers swollen and she told me it was normal, then my infusion nurse came up and told me I needed to elevate my arms and slowly my fingers back to normal.

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Nov 12, 2019 11:04PM MinusTwo wrote:

fac - Strange - but still - the best advice is to to exactly what your doctor said to do. Don't know what you mean by 'gauge'. If you have drains, you won't be able to get those incisions wet.

2/15/11 BMX-DCIS 2SNB clear-TEs; 9/15/11-410gummies; 3/20/13 recurrance-5.5cm,mets to lymphs, Stage IIIB IDC ER/PRneg,HER2+; TCH/Perjeta/Neulasta x6; ALND 9/24/13 1/18 nodes 4.5cm; AC chemo 10/30/13 x3; herceptin again; Rads Feb2014
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Nov 13, 2019 12:37AM fac03 wrote:

MinusTwo, I meant gauze. Unfortunately I do not have too much confidence on my team in supporting me outside of what they did. After my chemo, my legs were swollen, they asked me to put on compression socks but not following up. Several issues I had during chemo, the oncologist asked me to see PCP. When I asked PCP directly, she admitted that she was not familiar with the side effect of chemo drugs, hence, I google myself.

This morning my surgeon saw me when my fingers were swollen, she told me it was normal. I later found out from an infusion nurse that I needed to elevate my arms. My surgeon already told me I am high risk with lymphedema, therefore I did not understand why she allowed my fingers to be swollen.

I don't understand what you meant by I won't be able to get the incision wet.

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Nov 13, 2019 02:28AM - edited Nov 13, 2019 02:28AM by fac03

I have been reading... Here also mentioned taking sponge bath and caring for the bandage dressing. I can't believe she asked me to take off everything for a shower on Wednesday. I am going to call to double check, because it was the nurse who told me when she discharged me.

https://www.breastcancer.org/treatment/surgery/lumpectomy/expectations

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Nov 13, 2019 05:38AM gb2115 wrote:

What did they use to close your incision? You should have been given post op instructions on how to care for everything.

Dx IDC in October 2016, stage 2A, 1.2 cm ER/PR+ Her2-, Grade 2, 1/3 nodes. Mammaprint low risk luminal A, Lumpectomy + radiation + tamoxifen. Age 38 at diagnosis.
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Nov 13, 2019 08:11AM flashlight wrote:

Hi, I took a shower the next day no bath allowed. I gently washed and patted dry the incisional areas. You need to keep the steri strips intact as long as possible, but mine under my left arm started to curl up a few days after. During my follow up with the BS she removed them. My left arm was slightly swollen, but mostly under the arm and not in my fingers. Sounds like you need to evaluated for lymphedema sooner than later. Good luck to you.

Dx 11/15/2018, IDC, Left, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 2, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 11/26/2018 Lumpectomy: Left; Lymph node removal: Sentinel Radiation Therapy 1/27/2019 Whole-breast: Breast, Lymph nodes Hormonal Therapy Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone)
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Nov 13, 2019 09:13AM flashlight wrote:

I forgot I removed the gauze dressing the next day. In your discharge instructions it should have said remove after 24 hours. Even if you had a drain removed the pressure dressing comes off. If it is sticking to your incision you can wet it and gently remove to prevent irritation to your incision. If they wanted you to keep it covered they would have said change dressing daily to prevent infection. Usually it says to call if you have a lot of drainage. You never want to leave a wet dressing on your skin for a long period of time it will damage your skin.

Dx 11/15/2018, IDC, Left, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 2, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 11/26/2018 Lumpectomy: Left; Lymph node removal: Sentinel Radiation Therapy 1/27/2019 Whole-breast: Breast, Lymph nodes Hormonal Therapy Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone)
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Nov 13, 2019 01:03PM Ingerp wrote:

Letting water run over the incision is fine. I've only had lumpectomies (no mastectomies) and just followed my BS's instructions. It's a really simple operation.

Dx 3/11/2016, DCIS, Left, 6cm+, Stage 0, Grade 3, ER-/PR- Surgery 3/23/2016 Lumpectomy Surgery 4/20/2016 Lumpectomy: Left Radiation Therapy 5/18/2016 Whole-breast: Breast Dx 3/2/2018, IDC, Right, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 2, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+ (FISH) Surgery 3/13/2018 Lumpectomy: Right; Lymph node removal: Sentinel Targeted Therapy 5/18/2018 Herceptin (trastuzumab) Chemotherapy 5/18/2018 Taxol (paclitaxel) Radiation Therapy 8/20/2018 Whole-breast: Breast

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