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Topic: December 2020 Surgery Group

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

Posted on: Dec 10, 2020 03:07AM - edited Jan 6, 2021 06:46AM by hopeful23

hopeful23 wrote:

I am scheduled for surgery on December 21. I'm hoping other December surgeries will post here so we can gain from each other's experiences with planning and recuperating. I know this holiday was going to be different anyway, but having surgery during the holidays and with a surge of COVID cases is making me somewhat more anxious..

I am having a unilateral mastectomy with sentinel node biopsy and tissue expander placement. I'm still debating what I will do going forward, implant or DIEP flap. The PS said I have time to decide. I am determined to heal quickly and help my daughter with her first child due the end of January. We are so excited for her (it's a girl!)arrival!


dee124 - lumpectomy, awaiting final pathology

12/3 morningstar - BMX

12/9 KE1986 - BMX w/ tissue expanders

12/9 typhoon - BMX direct-to-implant

12/10 Blue1002 - BMX w/ tissue expanders

12/15 Taralynn - BMX w/ tissue expanders

12/18 KMouse - BMX

12/18 Bennette - lumpectomy

12/18 mtspacekace - BMX w/ tissue expanders

12/18 rmh2744 - BM

12/21 Melbo - lumpectomy and reconstruction

12/21 hopeful23 - UMX w/ tissue expander

12/23 AnnC2019 - TE exchange w/ silicone implants

12/24 Umma777 - BMX w/ tissue expander

12/30 ToadNae - lumpectomy

12/30 Twinkle-09 - lumpectomy

12/31 PositivelyHalffull - lumpectomy

1/8 AB45 - lumpectomy



Dx 9/17/2015, DCIS, Left, Stage 0, Grade 3, ER+/PR- Surgery 9/30/2015 Lumpectomy: Left Radiation Therapy 11/4/2015 Whole-breast: Breast Hormonal Therapy 12/18/2015 Arimidex (anastrozole) Dx 11/24/2020, DCIS, Left, Stage 0, Grade 3, 0/1 nodes, ER-/PR- Surgery 12/21/2020 Mastectomy: Left; Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement
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Dec 19, 2020 08:17PM mtspacekace wrote:

We just finally made it home! I had my BMX with expanders yesterday about 11am. I was out of surgery and in my room at 4:30. I had wonderful nurses and pain was managed well through the night. I slept well, considering the nurse coming in for vitals and meds through the night. I had nausea when I tried to eat after surgery, and again this morning with breakfast. Because I couldn’t keep food down, I didn’t get discharged this morning like was originally planned. (I’m pretty sure the nausea was from the anesthesia, I’ve never been under for that long, I have issues with motion sickness, and my dad has issues like this with anesthesia...) I got some zofran and kept lunch down and was finally discharged about 3 this afternoon. The 2 hour car ride was ok, I highly recommend a mastectomy pillow with the arm cut outs to hug on the car ride. I also had 2 lanyards to hook my drains too, then they are out of the way and I’m not worrying about them dropping. Once home, I was able to eat some dinner, and sitting in my recliner with my mastectomy pillow. I wish I would have taken that into the hospital. It helps with the pain quite a bit. I am taking extra strength Tylenol and little 5mg oxy, and it’s handling the pain well as long as I keep up on it.

Lots of thoughts and prayers to all you other ladies getting ready for surgeries. It wasn’t as bad as I thought. Pain isn’t as bad as I thought, and my expanders are quite nice. They were able to fill to about 400cc.

Diagnosed at 38. Dog mom. Wife. Rancher turned warrior, currently busy kicking cancers ass. Dx 6/3/2020, IDC, Left, 2cm, Grade 3, 0/1 nodes, ER-/PR-, HER2+ (FISH) Dx 6/3/2020, IDC, Left, 2cm, ER-/PR-, HER2+ (IHC) Targeted Therapy 7/7/2020 Perjeta (pertuzumab) Chemotherapy 7/7/2020 Carboplatin (Paraplatin), Taxotere (docetaxel) Targeted Therapy 7/7/2020 Herceptin (trastuzumab) Surgery 12/16/2020 Lymph node removal: Left; Mastectomy: Left, Right; Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement
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Dec 20, 2020 06:26AM typhoon wrote:

I'm so glad to see all the ladies making it through surgery, and getting home quickly! I'll be thinking of you tomorrow, hopeful23 - praying for the skilled hands of your doctors, an uncomplicated and successful surgery, and your quick return home to recover in comfort.

One thing that a friend (who had a bilateral mastectomy in October, and who generously advised and supported me throughout my experience) and my doctors warned me of: sometime around the 4th day after surgery, I might find myself unaccountably depressed and overly emotional. This did indeed happen. The euphoria of getting through the surgery, clearing all the anesthesia and surgery drugs out of my system, and finding that I wasn't really in any pain, all wore off. I woke up that Sunday morning clear-eyed and as morose as I've ever been. I was uncomfortable, everything was still swollen, nerves in my chest were starting to twinge, the implants felt heavy and alien on my chest, the drains and the power device powering my VAC dressings were a hassle for showering and moving around, I felt housebound, generally miserable, unable to see any clear end to all this awfulness, and ready to cry at anything and everything. It really helped me to remember the words of my friend and doctors: this kind of reaction - and the timing of it - is normal for many women. I decided to just roll with it; I huddled in comfy clothes next to the fire, watched stupid sad movies, cried at Christmas ads, ate comfort food, and wallowed in my misery. Sure enough, two days later my VAC dressings were removed, I was healing really well, got my first real look at what had happened to my chest, was able to move around much more easily, and the world seemed to be a much brighter and more hopeful place.

None of this is to say that everyone will have the same experience that I did. But if you do find yourself unusually depressed a few days after surgery, please remember that it's normal. You've been through a major physical trauma, you're dealing with cancer, and there are all kinds of physical, psychological, and emotional reactions that both of these circumstances create. Be super kind to yourself; if you can, let the people around you pamper you; and, remind yourself that you, your doctors, and your support network are all doing the very best you can to get through and manage this life-altering situation.

Hormonal Therapy 1/15/2020 Arimidex (anastrozole) Dx 10/23/2020, DCIS/IDC, Both breasts, <1cm, Stage IA, Grade 2, 0/4 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- (IHC) Surgery 12/9/2020 Lymph node removal: Left, Right, Sentinel; Mastectomy: Left, Right; Reconstruction (left): Silicone implant; Reconstruction (right): Silicone implant
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Dec 20, 2020 12:36PM Bennette wrote:

Hi - just had my lumpectomy and sentinel lymph biopsy done on Friday. Things went well, as far as I can tell. I was home mid afternoon. I've been able to mostly manage my pain with the ibuprofen, despite having a few oxycodone pills that were prescribed.

I just took a gentle shower to wash my hair. I was able to walk yesterday and today.

Here's my issue: I cannot stop crying. I am so sad. It doesn't help that today is my dad's birthday and usually my sisters and I get together but Covid. Has anyone else had this happen? I do struggle with depression but it's managed mostly and have online therapy every other week. I just feel unbelievabley sad. thanks for reading

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Dec 20, 2020 12:37PM Bennette wrote:

and typhoon: I just now read your post. That is exactly how I feel. I am crying so much I dind't read all of the posts before I wrote mine. Thank you

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Dec 20, 2020 01:38PM typhoon wrote:

Bennette - I'm so very sorry you are feeling this way. Be kind to yourself. It's completely normal, and things will get better. Gentle hugs, typhoon

Hormonal Therapy 1/15/2020 Arimidex (anastrozole) Dx 10/23/2020, DCIS/IDC, Both breasts, <1cm, Stage IA, Grade 2, 0/4 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- (IHC) Surgery 12/9/2020 Lymph node removal: Left, Right, Sentinel; Mastectomy: Left, Right; Reconstruction (left): Silicone implant; Reconstruction (right): Silicone implant
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Dec 20, 2020 08:06PM hopeful23 wrote:

mtspacekace, so glad you are home! Sounds like you are recovering well after the nausea resolved. I’m sending wishes that your speedy recovery continues for you. 400cc. Wow. I was told 50cc. I’ll have a ways to go! My daughter bought me a pillow. I will try it right away. Please keep checking in!

Typhoon, thank you for your post and for thinking of me and sending your prayers. I had a recurrence of DCIS from five years ago. I went for my five year screening mammogram with such confidence, and so happy I would be able to go off arimidex. Then I was told I needed a biopsy, and then a mastectomy. For the past few weeks, I feel like I have been putting one foot in front of the other and trying not to think about it. I know it will hit me at some point. It is such a comfort to know others experience that, too, and that you do get past it. I cried reading your post because you truly echoed my feelings. This is tough. It really is.

Bennette, as typhoon said, be kind to yourself. Be patient with yourself. This is a difficult time, but you will get past it. Please continue to let us know how you are doing. We are thinking of you!

Melbo, best wishes for your surgery tomorrow! You are in my thoughts!

Dx 9/17/2015, DCIS, Left, Stage 0, Grade 3, ER+/PR- Surgery 9/30/2015 Lumpectomy: Left Radiation Therapy 11/4/2015 Whole-breast: Breast Hormonal Therapy 12/18/2015 Arimidex (anastrozole) Dx 11/24/2020, DCIS, Left, Stage 0, Grade 3, 0/1 nodes, ER-/PR- Surgery 12/21/2020 Mastectomy: Left; Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement
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Dec 20, 2020 08:20PM morningstardust wrote:

Just wanted to pop back in and update everyone. I just finished week 2 post surgery and feel so much better. I had really severe pain in my arm from the axillary dissection the first week and it went away pretty fast with a few arm exercises (pendulum swing helped the most). I got my drains out a few days ago and that didn't hurt at all and now I'm sleeping better. I've also had two expansions so I'm at 130cc on both sides and I put on a cute cami top and actually thought I looked pretty good! They finally removed all my bandages and my scars are under the breasts and then I have a longer one in my arm pit. I think I'll eventually get a tattoo over that one so I don't have to look at it, but overall I'm very pleased and this has gone better than I thought. I hope you all have the best outcomes possible and that you have a happy holiday!

Dx 5/2020, IDC, Right, 3cm, Stage IIA, Grade 2, 2/13 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Chemotherapy 6/12/2020 AC + T (Taxol) Surgery 12/3/2020 Mastectomy: Left, Right; Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement Radiation Therapy 1/27/2021 Breast, Lymph nodes Hormonal Therapy Femara (letrozole), Zoladex (goserelin)
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Dec 20, 2020 09:49PM mtspacekace wrote:

hopeful 23: I had a skin sparing mastectomy, and probably at least D cups before surgery, maybe that is why I was able to be filled to 400 cc. I slept well in my recliner last night, with the mastectomy pillow (it’s got u-shapes cut out for your arms) I got a shower this morning after stripping and emptying drains. It was nice, I needed a little help from my husband to wash my back and get dried off. A neighbor lady gave me a Brobe that she used when she had her mastectomy, which I put on after the shower. Boy does it make handling the drains much easier. Before I just had them hanging on lanyard around my neck...but 4 of them got kind of heavy. The brobe has nice pockets to hold them, and it’s a nice soft fabric. Very comfortable. I kept up on pain meds and napped in between walks around the house. Very manageable first day home! You can do this!

Diagnosed at 38. Dog mom. Wife. Rancher turned warrior, currently busy kicking cancers ass. Dx 6/3/2020, IDC, Left, 2cm, Grade 3, 0/1 nodes, ER-/PR-, HER2+ (FISH) Dx 6/3/2020, IDC, Left, 2cm, ER-/PR-, HER2+ (IHC) Targeted Therapy 7/7/2020 Perjeta (pertuzumab) Chemotherapy 7/7/2020 Carboplatin (Paraplatin), Taxotere (docetaxel) Targeted Therapy 7/7/2020 Herceptin (trastuzumab) Surgery 12/16/2020 Lymph node removal: Left; Mastectomy: Left, Right; Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement
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Dec 20, 2020 09:51PM mtspacekace wrote:

Sending lots of good vibes, and prayers to hopeful23 and melbo for their surgeries tomorrow!

Diagnosed at 38. Dog mom. Wife. Rancher turned warrior, currently busy kicking cancers ass. Dx 6/3/2020, IDC, Left, 2cm, Grade 3, 0/1 nodes, ER-/PR-, HER2+ (FISH) Dx 6/3/2020, IDC, Left, 2cm, ER-/PR-, HER2+ (IHC) Targeted Therapy 7/7/2020 Perjeta (pertuzumab) Chemotherapy 7/7/2020 Carboplatin (Paraplatin), Taxotere (docetaxel) Targeted Therapy 7/7/2020 Herceptin (trastuzumab) Surgery 12/16/2020 Lymph node removal: Left; Mastectomy: Left, Right; Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement
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Dec 20, 2020 10:19PM Bennette wrote:

Melbo and hopeful23 - best wishes for your surgeries tomorrow.

Positivelyh - I had the radioactive seed implanted the day before, like you will. It's not a big deal - the main thing for me was that it took them a bit to find the right place. The good news/bad news for me was that it's a small area; but hard to find. They did the implantation via mammogram but sometimes will do it with ultrasound (my biopsy was ultrasound guided). My husband waited in the parking lot. Covid is raging here (I'm in California) and he is at risk so I was fine with him waiting there. Even the day of the surgery, I had him drop me off and go home for a few hours. Initially I was uncomfortable with this, but I basically checked into nuclear medicine, they do their thing with injecting the dye and then take me up to surgery. There was NO where to sit in the waiting room for radiology and I was just as glad he wasn't there - again, prefer he not get exposed. He went home and then came back a few hours later and waited outside the hospital until they called him and I was ready to go.

It sucks that Covid is added to the mix for us. But, for me, it allowed me to just worry about me. I brought a book and there wasn't much time even for that once things got rolling. If you have other questions, let me know.

And. Many thanks for those here. It was a rough day for me emotionally, 2 days post surgery. I echo others' comments that the pain is pretty manageable. I've been taking ibuprofen mainly.

I would recommend getting a supportive front closing bra or two. Somehow, that didn't sink in for me and I only had the contraption they sent me home in which was gross after 2 days. Nothing like going to Kohl's on the Sunday before Christmas to try and find something, that I couldn't try on anyway. It was nuts there. I bought 3 bras and none work since the incision for the lymph nodes hit right at the wrong placed on the ones I bought I'm in a sports bra that I had around. It isn't quite as supportive as I'd like, but has to do. The bra that I got from the hospital will be dry tomorrow and I can use that again if needed.

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Dec 21, 2020 05:50PM AnnC2019 wrote:

I’m scheduled for TE exchange on 12/23. I will be getting silicone implants.

Dx 6/19/2019, ILC, Right, 3cm, Stage IIB, Grade 2, 1/2 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- (FISH) Hormonal Therapy 8/15/2019 Arimidex (anastrozole) Surgery 8/28/2019 Lymph node removal: Sentinel; Mastectomy: Right; Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement Radiation Therapy 11/4/2019 Whole-breast: Breast, Lymph nodes, Chest wall Surgery 7/22/2020 Prophylactic mastectomy: Left; Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement Surgery 12/23/2020 Reconstruction (left): Silicone implant; Reconstruction (right): Silicone implant Surgery Reconstruction (left): Silicone implant; Reconstruction (right): Silicone implant Radiation Therapy Whole-breast: Breast, Lymph nodes, Chest wall
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Dec 22, 2020 11:39PM mtspacekace wrote:

Best wishes for a successful surgery tomorrow Annc2019!


Melbo and hopeful: hope your recovery is going well!


Positive thoughts to the rest of you having surgeries coming up!

Diagnosed at 38. Dog mom. Wife. Rancher turned warrior, currently busy kicking cancers ass. Dx 6/3/2020, IDC, Left, 2cm, Grade 3, 0/1 nodes, ER-/PR-, HER2+ (FISH) Dx 6/3/2020, IDC, Left, 2cm, ER-/PR-, HER2+ (IHC) Targeted Therapy 7/7/2020 Perjeta (pertuzumab) Chemotherapy 7/7/2020 Carboplatin (Paraplatin), Taxotere (docetaxel) Targeted Therapy 7/7/2020 Herceptin (trastuzumab) Surgery 12/16/2020 Lymph node removal: Left; Mastectomy: Left, Right; Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement
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Dec 23, 2020 05:27AM Melbo wrote:

my surgery went well on Monday and I came home Monday evening. The only slightly weird/scary thing that happened was as the nurse was going over discharge information my heart rate suddenly shot up to over 200. The nurse was able to get it back down fairly quickly, but it caught all of us off guard. Then we had to wait for the nurse to talk to the anesthesiologist and get an EKG before we could leave.

Yesterday was okay. I can only take Tylenol and oxy for the pain so it got up to a 5 a few times, especially when we bumped one of my drains a bit stripping it. Today already seems much better. It also helps that my husband is excellent at taking care of me and helping me with everything. Sadly with the holidays this week I can’t get my drains out until Monday, so that kind of sucks.

Diagnosed right before my 42nd birthday. One husband, two dogs, one cat and no kids. Dx 7/16/2020, IDC, Left, 2cm, Stage IIA, Grade 3, 1/7 nodes, ER-/PR-, HER2+ Targeted Therapy 8/6/2020 Herceptin (trastuzumab) Targeted Therapy 8/6/2020 Perjeta (pertuzumab) Chemotherapy 8/6/2020 Carboplatin (Paraplatin), Taxotere (docetaxel) Surgery 12/20/2020 Lumpectomy: Left; Lymph node removal: Sentinel; Reconstruction (left); Reconstruction (right) Radiation Therapy 1/31/2021 Whole-breast: Breast, Lymph nodes
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Dec 23, 2020 02:02PM hopeful23 wrote:

AnnC2019 - I hope your surgery went well today and you are comfortable and recovering! Many thoughts!

Umma777 - I will be thinking of you tomorrow and wishing you the best with your surgery!

Bennette - I hope you are feeling better - I have been thinking of you!

Melbo - happy to hear your surgery went well and that your husband is so helpful as you recover. I hope your pain is getting under better control with your medicines. I sure understand wanting to get rid of the drains 🥴

I had unilateral mastectomy with tissue expander Monday morning and came home yesterday afternoon. Surgery went great and I have been recovering pretty comfortably. The drains are definitely the hurdle for me. They are a bit uncomfortable at rest, and can be more than uncomfortable with movement. I rest a lot lol. My arm not on the mastectomy side can get me out of bed, eat, move, etc without discomfort or worrying about the drains - I am in amazement for the many women who undergo bilateral mastectomy. They were able to fill the expander to 150cc which was a pleasant surprise (they had told me 50cc prior to surgery). Hopefully that will get me where I need to be earlier. The expander is very bumpy, hard, and just weird in many places. Hoping that improves with fills. I am happy with my recovery so far. It hasn’t been overwhelming for sure and pain, which is more discomfort, is manageable. I think recovery will be slower and longer than I anticipated due to the limitation of the drains though. I’m not scheduled for a post-op appt until the 31st. They said I could shower today, which sounds good, but I’m a bit apprehensive. I’m going to try tomorrow.

I hope everyone is doing well!

Dx 9/17/2015, DCIS, Left, Stage 0, Grade 3, ER+/PR- Surgery 9/30/2015 Lumpectomy: Left Radiation Therapy 11/4/2015 Whole-breast: Breast Hormonal Therapy 12/18/2015 Arimidex (anastrozole) Dx 11/24/2020, DCIS, Left, Stage 0, Grade 3, 0/1 nodes, ER-/PR- Surgery 12/21/2020 Mastectomy: Left; Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement
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Dec 24, 2020 10:06AM arb95f wrote:

Hello everyone - first time poster here. I was diagnosed Nov 13 (yes, as in Friday the 13th) with Stage 2 (3 small lesions with a total width of 25mm) grade 2 ER/PR positive and HER2 negative breast cancer in my right breast. Ki-67 score was 10%. They had actually done an MRI with contrast dye the day before, so they were able to see that the lymph nodes were ok (ultrasound confirmed as well) and there doesn’t look like any spread elsewhere.

I would be interested to know if anyone is going in for a reduction along with their lumpectomy? I am tentatively scheduled for surgery on 1/12, but am strongly considering going for the reduction as I am a 34g and have always found my breasts to be in the way (I do long-distance kayaking) or the object of unwanted attention. I am 43 and this is going to be my first real surgery - so to be honest, this waiting time between appointments has been really hard mentally; I am still waiting on the results of my mammaprint and genetics testing (USPS lost two of my tests).

Thanks also to everyone here for sharing their stories; this community has already been a great help

Dx 11/13/2020, ILC, Right, 2cm, Stage IIA, Grade 2, 0/6 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- (FISH) Hormonal Therapy Radiation Therapy Surgery Lumpectomy: Right; Lymph node removal: Sentinel
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Dec 24, 2020 02:20PM - edited Dec 24, 2020 02:23PM by AnnC2019

I was a prescribed a 7 day regiment of Cipro post TE exchange. I just got over a 2nd round of C Difficile in October and I'm worried now about starting another course of antibiotics. I didn't get a chance to discuss this with my surgeon and I don't want to bother him during the holiday. Has everyone been given post surgery antibiotics

Dx 6/19/2019, ILC, Right, 3cm, Stage IIB, Grade 2, 1/2 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- (FISH) Hormonal Therapy 8/15/2019 Arimidex (anastrozole) Surgery 8/28/2019 Lymph node removal: Sentinel; Mastectomy: Right; Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement Radiation Therapy 11/4/2019 Whole-breast: Breast, Lymph nodes, Chest wall Surgery 7/22/2020 Prophylactic mastectomy: Left; Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement Surgery 12/23/2020 Reconstruction (left): Silicone implant; Reconstruction (right): Silicone implant Surgery Reconstruction (left): Silicone implant; Reconstruction (right): Silicone implant Radiation Therapy Whole-breast: Breast, Lymph nodes, Chest wall
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Dec 24, 2020 02:22PM AnnC2019 wrote:

Thank you hopeful23. My surgery went well and it was a nice Christmas present to be finally rid of the tissue expanders. A bit sore but haven’t taken anything so far.

Dx 6/19/2019, ILC, Right, 3cm, Stage IIB, Grade 2, 1/2 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- (FISH) Hormonal Therapy 8/15/2019 Arimidex (anastrozole) Surgery 8/28/2019 Lymph node removal: Sentinel; Mastectomy: Right; Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement Radiation Therapy 11/4/2019 Whole-breast: Breast, Lymph nodes, Chest wall Surgery 7/22/2020 Prophylactic mastectomy: Left; Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement Surgery 12/23/2020 Reconstruction (left): Silicone implant; Reconstruction (right): Silicone implant Surgery Reconstruction (left): Silicone implant; Reconstruction (right): Silicone implant Radiation Therapy Whole-breast: Breast, Lymph nodes, Chest wall
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Dec 24, 2020 04:33PM Melbo wrote:

arb95f — I ended up with a reduction as part of my lumpectomy and my plastic surgeon made it sound like reductions were a fairly common choice. In my case the reduction on my right side was only to make the right side match my left side after the cancerous tissue was removed from the left, but if you want to go smaller I don’t see why it would be an issue.

Diagnosed right before my 42nd birthday. One husband, two dogs, one cat and no kids. Dx 7/16/2020, IDC, Left, 2cm, Stage IIA, Grade 3, 1/7 nodes, ER-/PR-, HER2+ Targeted Therapy 8/6/2020 Herceptin (trastuzumab) Targeted Therapy 8/6/2020 Perjeta (pertuzumab) Chemotherapy 8/6/2020 Carboplatin (Paraplatin), Taxotere (docetaxel) Surgery 12/20/2020 Lumpectomy: Left; Lymph node removal: Sentinel; Reconstruction (left); Reconstruction (right) Radiation Therapy 1/31/2021 Whole-breast: Breast, Lymph nodes
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Dec 24, 2020 04:59PM mtspacekace wrote:

Annc2019... I was given antibiotics in the hospital thru my IV, twice while I was admitted. Otherwise, I do not have a script for them.

Diagnosed at 38. Dog mom. Wife. Rancher turned warrior, currently busy kicking cancers ass. Dx 6/3/2020, IDC, Left, 2cm, Grade 3, 0/1 nodes, ER-/PR-, HER2+ (FISH) Dx 6/3/2020, IDC, Left, 2cm, ER-/PR-, HER2+ (IHC) Targeted Therapy 7/7/2020 Perjeta (pertuzumab) Chemotherapy 7/7/2020 Carboplatin (Paraplatin), Taxotere (docetaxel) Targeted Therapy 7/7/2020 Herceptin (trastuzumab) Surgery 12/16/2020 Lymph node removal: Left; Mastectomy: Left, Right; Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement
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Dec 24, 2020 06:11PM StaceyG6368 wrote:

it will be a week on Christmas that I had my mastectomy and reconstruction. I'm thankful I got word that my pathology was all clear but I'm struggling with what my scars look like I can barely look at them. I know it takes time but wow my mastectomy breast took a hit. My left breast they did a reduction on so that one is not too bad but wow that first look took the wind out of me. Looking forward to the drain come out that's for sure. Trying to trust the process. Pain is minimal. More just discomfort than pain. Hope everyone is doing ok, reading your posts we all seem to be experiencing the same little things. Stay strong ladies!!

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Dec 24, 2020 11:02PM hopeful23 wrote:

Umma777 - Hope your surgery went well! Many wishes that you are recovering comfortably.

arb95f - Waiting between appointments and for results needed to move forward is definitely hard. I don’t know about the possibilities of reduction with lumpectomy, but it sure seems possible.

AnnC2019 - like mtspacekace, I was given antibiotics while in the hospital, but antibiotics were not prescribed when I went home. I’m sure every surgeon has their own protocol, but with your history of C. difficile please don’t hesitate to contact your surgeon about your need for antibiotics after TE exchange. They shouldn’t mind being contacted over the holidays.

Stacey - I keep telling myself this is not the final result, and I know it isn’t. Still, I’m rather grateful for the fairly large bandage right now. So glad your pathology results are clear. How is the recovery from reduction? Do you have a drain(s)? I haven’t discussed with the plastic surgeon yet, but I’m considering reduction and lift on my untreated breast and wonder what recovery would be like (and wondering if drains are involved. Ugh)

Dx 9/17/2015, DCIS, Left, Stage 0, Grade 3, ER+/PR- Surgery 9/30/2015 Lumpectomy: Left Radiation Therapy 11/4/2015 Whole-breast: Breast Hormonal Therapy 12/18/2015 Arimidex (anastrozole) Dx 11/24/2020, DCIS, Left, Stage 0, Grade 3, 0/1 nodes, ER-/PR- Surgery 12/21/2020 Mastectomy: Left; Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement
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Dec 25, 2020 12:42PM AnnC2019 wrote:

Thanks hopeful23. I was going to hold off taking them but noticed today a red line going from the IV spot up to the middle of my arm. kind of looks like it might be be infected, so I am taking the Cipro. Took off my bandages from the implant site and it started to bleed in one spot. the sutures are on the inside this time so there was no glue holding everything together. Hoping it all heals

Dx 6/19/2019, ILC, Right, 3cm, Stage IIB, Grade 2, 1/2 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- (FISH) Hormonal Therapy 8/15/2019 Arimidex (anastrozole) Surgery 8/28/2019 Lymph node removal: Sentinel; Mastectomy: Right; Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement Radiation Therapy 11/4/2019 Whole-breast: Breast, Lymph nodes, Chest wall Surgery 7/22/2020 Prophylactic mastectomy: Left; Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement Surgery 12/23/2020 Reconstruction (left): Silicone implant; Reconstruction (right): Silicone implant Surgery Reconstruction (left): Silicone implant; Reconstruction (right): Silicone implant Radiation Therapy Whole-breast: Breast, Lymph nodes, Chest wall
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Dec 25, 2020 02:03PM StaceyG6368 wrote:

Hopeful23 thanks for the words of encouragement. The healthy breast is doing great. The reduction and lift was easy. I did have a drain but only for a few days. Healing nicely. Where as my mastectomy breast still has drain one week out. And still having discomfort.

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Dec 25, 2020 08:58PM Moderators wrote:

StaceyG636, glad you found us here, and welcome. We appreciate you sharing. Keep us posted.

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Dec 25, 2020 10:12PM - edited Dec 25, 2020 10:16PM by Bennette

arb95f- I also got my diagnosis call on 11/13. I'm sorry you are waiting so long for surgery. I hope you can get answers from others here regarding your questions

Hopeful23- thank you for the good thoughts. I'm doing better. I still have ups and downs but think that is to be expected.

I did get a call from my surgeon that my lymph nodes were clear. I had 5 removed. Yikes that seems like a lot. I feel some twinges on that side - left- . I have my post surgery follow up on the 3rd.

also. Is there a place to chat about husband/spouse/ partners and this? Mostly my husband has been great. I just know he doesn’t get a lot of this and I’m tired.

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Dec 26, 2020 12:55AM - edited Dec 26, 2020 04:55AM by LittleGrammieTre

This Post was deleted by LittleGrammieTre.
Dx 7/2013, DCIS/IDC, Right, Stage IIA, Grade 3, ER+/PR+, HER2- Dx 3/2020, IDC/IDC: Papillary, Right, Grade 3, ER+/PR+, HER2- (FISH) Surgery Lumpectomy: Right; Lymph node removal: Sentinel, Underarm/Axillary; Mastectomy: Right
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Dec 26, 2020 04:26AM - edited Dec 26, 2020 04:53AM by LittleGrammieTre

....Anyone know much about Invasive micropapillary carcinoma w IDC?



Dx 7/2013, DCIS/IDC, Right, Stage IIA, Grade 3, ER+/PR+, HER2- Dx 3/2020, IDC/IDC: Papillary, Right, Grade 3, ER+/PR+, HER2- (FISH) Surgery Lumpectomy: Right; Lymph node removal: Sentinel, Underarm/Axillary; Mastectomy: Right
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Dec 26, 2020 11:15AM mtspacekace wrote:

LittleGrammieTre: you can search the forums and find one that pertain to your question...this one is just about having surgery in December. I did a quick search and found this forum, maybe ask your questions there, as you are more likely to get better answers. https://community.breastcancer.org/forum/137/topics/768020?page=6#post_4348111


I am one week out from surgery and feeling so good today! Then again, it may be the oxy talking... I slept for 8 hours last night without taking any pain meds. I have been waking up after 4, to take an oxy, or I would be so sore when I wake I couldn’t get out of my chair. I took my Tylenol and oxy and went to sleep, and woke up 8 hours later, and the pain was good! This must mean I’m getting better. I have been showering every other day, and today was shower day. It felt good, I have good range with my arms! We are going to my mil for late Christmas celebration today, and I found a zip up hoodie that had pockets on the inside. My drains fit in them well and I was able to coil the tubing up. This is the first time I’ve been dressed comfy, and feel comfy! The brobes I have been wearing are nice, but it feels good to be “dressed”. I put on a little makeup. My scars and breasts had been a little bumpy (which plastics said was normal part of healing) today they seem to be smoother, and looking more like breasts. I feel pretty. Not scarred. My spirits are high. It’s a beautiful day out. I am so blessed.

For those of you getting ready for surgery, sometimes we get scared it’s going to be absolutely miserable...I know I was scared reading accounts of post surgery, and being absolutely helpless for weeks. I can’t do everything, but I can do more than what I figured I would be able to. I need my husband to help me dry off, put my pants and socks on, and lift heavy things over 5#, and reach high items. I’m sure I could get dressed completely and shower without him...but his help just speeds up the process a lot. Just know it can be bad...but it might not be! A positive attitude is really helping me I think.

I will be finished with my script for oxy today. I am only taking about half. And then will move onto the script for tramadol. I hope it works as well.

Hoping and praying that the rest of you are feeling as well as I do, and recovery is going well. ❤️❤️


Diagnosed at 38. Dog mom. Wife. Rancher turned warrior, currently busy kicking cancers ass. Dx 6/3/2020, IDC, Left, 2cm, Grade 3, 0/1 nodes, ER-/PR-, HER2+ (FISH) Dx 6/3/2020, IDC, Left, 2cm, ER-/PR-, HER2+ (IHC) Targeted Therapy 7/7/2020 Perjeta (pertuzumab) Chemotherapy 7/7/2020 Carboplatin (Paraplatin), Taxotere (docetaxel) Targeted Therapy 7/7/2020 Herceptin (trastuzumab) Surgery 12/16/2020 Lymph node removal: Left; Mastectomy: Left, Right; Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement
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Dec 26, 2020 12:16PM Blue1002 wrote:

hopeful23 thank you for starting this thread!

LittleGrammieTre I don't know about that but there are SO many knowledgable women on these boards, hopefully someone will.

Best of luck to everyone who is pre, post and mid-surgery right now! I had a BMX with 15 lymph nodes removed and tissue expanders under the muscle on Dec. 10. My recovery has been pretty rough -- luckily everything looks fine in terms of my incisions look good, no infections, but I am really struggling with pain. Which I hate because, well of course everyone hates pain, but I just thought of myself as a pretty tough person and now I think maybe I'm not? When people ask me how I'm doing it's really hard to answer other than "I'm good!"

I don't want to scare anyone reading this pre-op because it seems like a lot of people really ARE good with just like Advil and Tylenol post-op, and that's great. Unfortunately I don't seem to be one of them. :(

I am struggling psychologically a bit as well because surgery sort of changed everything. I found a lump on election day (THAT was a memorable election day!) and everything moved very quickly to a BMX on Dec. 10. There was no hint beforehand of any lymph node involvement so the plan was for BMX (DCIS on the left, and the right was preventative) plus a standard sentinel node biopsy. Then it turned out during surgery that my sentinel node and two others were cancerous - she removed 15 total.

So I went in being told that chemo and radiation were unlikely to be necessary. I was expecting to get my breasts (and the cancer) removed, come out cancer free and get new boobs in the bargain! (Planning to size up from an A cup to B or C.) I obviously overestimated how easy this would all be. And the lymph node involvement changed everything. So now I'm looking at 5 months of chemo, possibly radiation, and the promised land of pain free new boobs seems very far away.

Sorry, I really try to stay positive but I had a full breakdown last night due to the pain.

I can offer some reassurance to anyone who is pre-surgery and nervous about COVID restrictions, I'm in NYC so they were pretty strict but to me it was no big deal! I guess with everything going on I really didn't notice, plus I was pleasantly drugged up. And the nurses were so nice. My husband was allowed to be in pre-op with me (which was a huge room with patients separated by curtains so I don't really understand that but OK?). I was alone in post-op but somehow I had my phone and Facetimed with my husband and demanded he get me a milkshake and a koala. He was allowed to visit the next day briefly and came with a milkshake and a stuffed koala. So I'm just saying ask for what you want in recovery.

Happy



Dx 11/9/2020, DCIS/IDC: Mucinous, Left, 3cm, Stage IIB, 3/15 nodes, ER+/PR- Surgery 12/10/2020 Lymph node removal: Left, Sentinel, Underarm/Axillary; Mastectomy: Left, Right; Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement Hormonal Therapy Surgery Reconstruction (left): Nipple reconstruction, Nipple tattoo, Silicone implant; Reconstruction (right): Silicone implant Chemotherapy AC + T (Taxol)
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Dec 26, 2020 03:48PM morningstardust wrote:

Hi blue! I did chemo before surgery (ACT) and it was completely ok. The first two months of AC were more difficult physically but even those two months were not as bad as I had been led to believe. All nausea was controlled with medication and I just felt heavy and tired for a few days post infusion. By one week post infusion (I did dose dense every two weeks) I would be totally fine. I had steroid related anxiety every infusion and that was really the only thing. Taxol was a breeze and because it's weekly it goes by super fast. I did start to get upset about week 6 of taxol just feeling like it was forever but then it was over and my hair grew back at light speed. Everyone is different and some people have much harder experiences but it might not be as bad as you think. I certainly hope it goes as easy as possible for you. I'm sure that's a horrible feeling to have your expectations changed so much but the only way out is through and you will get there!! It feels so long in the day to day but it really does go quickly. Be well and I hope your pain eases up.

Dx 5/2020, IDC, Right, 3cm, Stage IIA, Grade 2, 2/13 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Chemotherapy 6/12/2020 AC + T (Taxol) Surgery 12/3/2020 Mastectomy: Left, Right; Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement Radiation Therapy 1/27/2021 Breast, Lymph nodes Hormonal Therapy Femara (letrozole), Zoladex (goserelin)

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