• How Long Will I Be This Tired?

    Asked by AlizaMLS on Thursday, February 14, 2013

    How Long Will I Be This Tired?

    I had my unilateral mastectomy on 12/13/12. I also had 2 post-op infections afterward (was hosp on IV antibiotics) & am a Lupus patient. I barely have enough energy to make dinner. I walked 6 blocks the other day and was ready to collapse. I had Stage I cancer, They got everything. No lymph node involvement and my Oncotype indicates I don't need chemo. I helped my fiance lift his couch over a bannister during the summer when he moved in with me. When's my energy going to come back and what can I do in the meantime? Patience is not one of my virtues!!...;)

    8 Answers from the Community

    8 answers
    • SueRae1's Avatar

      it takes time to heal from major surgery. I have never had a mastectomy, but I know that it took almost 6 months to get back to my "normal" energy level after I had my nephrectomy in 1995. Just listen to your body. Eat as clean as you can and get in some light activity every day. start with 5 min and build up. When I was in my early 20's I had major abdominal surgery due to a burst ovarian cyst. After I got the Ok to go back to work, I decided I was fine with going back 100% - to work, my social life, exercise , etc. Well 6 month later I came down and was out of work for another 3 weeks and felt awful for another 3 months.

      over 7 years ago
    • carm's Avatar

      Hey Aliza, This must be so frustrating for you. I wonder if you have considered vitamins? Vitamin B12 is a real energy booster and you can get them in easy melts that disolve on your tongue or are chewable. I use an easy melt in wild cherry flavor that is 2000 IU and I take it every morning to boost my energy. You can get them at Walmart and also on Amazon (I got mine on Amazon). Check with your oncologist to make sure that she approves. Many of my patients take them to combat fatigue. Best of luck to you, Carm RN.

      over 7 years ago
    • karen1956's Avatar

      Yes, your energy will come back, but give it time.....in the meantime listen to your body....do what you feel up to doing...rest when you need to.....

      over 7 years ago
    • nancyjac's Avatar

      Did you just have surgery or did you also have chemo and/or radiation? If just the surgery, I suspect the fatigue (as well as the infections) you are experiencing are exacerbated by the lupus. Has your oncologist coordinated with the doctor you see for the lupus?

      over 7 years ago
    • Nancebeth's Avatar

      I had a bilateral reconstruction with immediate reconstruction in February 2012. I was out of work for 9 weeks. I followed this by 6 sessions of chemo. The general rule is that it takes your body about a month to recover from each hour you are under general anesthesia. Also about a month for each session of chemo. I had a surgery to fix my left implant in November. I have finally started to feel almost back to my before cancer energy levels.
      I know it is frustrating, however, mastectomy is major surgery and your body needs time to heal. I am sure the lupus makes it a little more difficult. It isn't easy to be patient but that is the best advice I can give.

      over 7 years ago
    • debco148's Avatar

      Right now treat yourself as if you are in rehab.. don't try to run a marathon, etc. Your focus should be on eating extremely nutritious food, lots of good fats, and proteins that repair tissue damage. B vitimins help too. But seriously lots of dark green leafy veggies.. kale, spinach, etc. Olive oil, coconut, etc. Then set a little goal of walking only 10mins for a few days, then build up each day by adding 5 mins more. Take baby steps, but each day you will see more progress. Also, learn to meditate, it helps with the patience part. This is time to heal and learn new and interesting things about life, so take time to reflect, be grateful every day, and you will soon begin to see the healing begin! and you will feel more energy from it.

      over 7 years ago
    • attypatty's Avatar

      Dear Aliza MLS:
      So you just underwent the shock of discovering you had cancer, followed by major surgery which included the removal of a limb (it's as bad a losing an arm or a leg, both physically and emotionally, but we often overlook that aspect of mastectomy), and I imagine you are facing radiation. And you are surprised that your body is a little tired?! We all are going through or have gone through this. The body does recover its natural energy levels but how much time it takes depends on a lot of factors - but mostly it depends on giving our bodies the rest they need - and deserve! They've been through a lot. I found that when I listened to my body, gave it rest when it needed it and treated it gently, my energy got better little by little. I can also tell you that 18 months after diagnosis, after being slashed, poisoned and burned (surgery, chemotherapy and radiation), I am nearly back to my pre-cancer experience energy. But even now, I still have a ways to go and still get very tired on the evening.
      Maybe patience is one of the lessons cancer has to teach us.......
      Fight On,

      over 7 years ago
    • gwendolyn's Avatar

      Moderate exercise will give you energy. I like that other people here have suggested walking, but you could swim or play ping-pong or whatever appeals to you. Start slowly and increase the frequency and duration in small increments. It takes a while to recover from the trauma of surgery.

      over 7 years ago

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