• PJH's Avatar

    Can mastectomy/reconstruction result in shoulder issues?

    Asked by PJH on Sunday, March 24, 2013

    Can mastectomy/reconstruction result in shoulder issues?

    7 Answers from the Community

    7 answers
    • bbay65's Avatar

      After the mastectomy my reconstruction didn't go well. I resisted the excersizes and my shoulder froze. It was hard to get back to normal. My advice is to do what the discharge instructions advise. You will be fine.

      over 5 years ago
    • ValerieR's Avatar

      I have had the mastectomy, and the exercises that they give you help tremendously. I have not yet had reconstruction, but I'm sure that I will need to exercise after this as well. If you don't, you may have some issues.

      over 5 years ago
    • SueRae1's Avatar

      I have not had a mastectomy, but I do remember my shoulder being sore after my lumpectomy in 2010 as well as the two surgeries I had to remove fibroadenomas in 1988 & 1999. There muscle in shoulder and shoulder blade that can become out of whack whenever you have your arms over your head etc for more then 10 min. My shoulders always act up after my MRI,

      over 5 years ago
    • gwendolyn's Avatar

      Yes, surgery involving the chest and/or armpit can definitely cause shoulder problems. You may need to see a physical therapist.

      about 5 years ago
    • Risa's Avatar

      I had severe shoulder problems after my chemo and bilateral mastectomy which delayed my radiation. I tried an occupational therapist for almost two months with no results.Then I went and had my shoulders diagnosed by an orthopedic surgeon and he diagnosed them as frozen shoulders so I went to the physical therapist that he recommended. At first the physical therapist told me that it was going to take a few months thus delaying my radiation. But he helped me within two and 1/2 weeks.Unfortunately I have IBC and had a recurrence to the skin by delaying the radiation. So my advise is to find a good physical therapist ASAP. My shoulders feel better than ever.

      about 5 years ago
    • scootersmom's Avatar

      I think it would depend on if lymph nodes were removed as well. I had a little shoulder pain but nothing that the tylenol couldn't handle. The reconstuction question would depend on the type of reconstruction as well. I have the tissue expanders followed by the implants. I was told to take it easy and not overdo it as he needed the muscles to heal after each of the placements. I think I had more shoulder pains because of the heavy breasts before the surgery than I did after the bilateral and reconstruction.

      about 5 years ago
    • jad's Avatar

      Thanks for bringing this up. I've had a shoulder issue for years...due to over-swimming, or stroking incorrectly. Sometimes it's fine - sometimes, it's a little bothersome, but never enough to
      seek out an orthopedist. However, since I tried an exercise (on my own) that was supposed to be
      good for shoulders - I've had a problem. And this happened very shortly before my radiation started. Naturally the bad shoulder is on the side where I had the lumpectoy and lymph node removal. And the radiation, which I am just now finishing. I hope the fact that I don't have to lie in
      that awful position any more will calm down my shoulder. Meantime - I've been miserable not knowing if I'm experiencing radiation pain (I have burns close to my neck and collarbone) or shoulder pain. I am not eager to start in with a shoulder specialist at this point as I've had enough going on with the bc specialists. I will at least get the name of a good "shoulder man" in my area, but, as stated I'm not rushing to start any new investigations. My insurance covers 12 PT treatments if prescribed by a doc.

      about 5 years ago

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