• Joy's Avatar

    I am curious how many people had problems with radiated skin

    Asked by Joy on Friday, May 2, 2014

    I am curious how many people had problems with radiated skin

    11 Answers from the Community

    11 answers
    • GregP_WN's Avatar

      What sort of problems Joy? Long term or just side effects while taking the treatments? I had pretty good burns on my neck, the skin turned into "turkey skin" and was almost black. Other than that my skin problems were not many. I had long term side effects deeper past the skin on my neck, I had a carotid artery that was damaged by the radiation and just about closed off. Let us know, others will have some feedback for you.

      almost 6 years ago
    • CAS1's Avatar

      You cannot ever allow the area to have any sun exposure what so ever.

      almost 6 years ago
    • ChildOfGod4570's Avatar

      Is this just as you are being treated, or are you thinking of permanent effects after rads are done? God bless!

      almost 6 years ago
    • cbanks' Avatar

      Hi joy. Every week I would be checked by nurse and doctor and they mentioned this may happen and if it did it would probably take time to return to normal. For me my skinned turned to 'sun burn' mode the last couple weeks of treatment. Not the entire area but more under the breast area. When it did I was recommended to use acquaphor. It worked awesome. So for more it was short term effects nothing permanent so far. This fall will be a year when I completed my rads. Good luck and please continue to share. We are here for you. Peace!

      almost 6 years ago
    • debco148's Avatar

      It depends on the extend of rads needed. I had left mastectomy with one lymph involved. But, the path report came back that that definitely the cancer was not just in one tumor--which is what it looked like in MRI and convinced me to do the mastectomy in the first place. So because of my pathology report, I had very extensive rads - I did 28 rounds. Had no side effects until about the 24th, kept using aquaphor cream after each. Then, that last few they hit the skin area because of the position of tumor, etc and lymph areas including near collar bone in neck. All of a sudden, I see blistering start and seeping. Right away my rad onc gave me medicated pads to put on the burns, a script for antibiotic, and a mesh top to wear instead of taping anything to my skin, this held the pads on. Then, I do remember feeling fatiqued then. But, not much before. I'd still exercise pretty regularly and have enough stamina to do so. So the burn thing knocked me out for about a week, but I was amazed how quickly it healed. I was left with some dark skin which after putting cocoa butter on the neck is almost back to looking normal. I wear 30 spf if anywhere near sun so that it doesn't burn. If tans, it just gets darker than the rest of skin. I did have lasting effects noticed though when I did DIEP reconstruction. There was so much scar tissue in the breast area that plastic surgeon has to remove it all first and test it to make sure. It was in fact scar tissue. But, then what we don't realize is that the blood vessels are also comprimised. So, my healing from DIEP surgery all the way down to stomach area had a heck of a time healing. The radiation was the culprit! But, I'd do it again to avoid the ancillary node surgery (this was archiac way they handled lymph node positive and they stopped doing it about 3 yrs ago, rads and chemo suffice). I'm grateful for the good treatment we have today and with research continuing it will get better all the time. Best to you.

      almost 6 years ago
    • Gabba's Avatar

      The skin under the radiated breast burned, blistered, and peeled...this was at the very end when I was receiving the 5 "boost" sessions...the area healed within 7-10 days once radiation ended...however, if I am hot, sweaty that same area becomes very irritated (in the exact same pattern as the original burn) and sometimes I can easily develop intertrigo (a fungal infection) which I immediately treat with Nystatin powder. But everyone is different and some never progress to burns. (I did EVERYTHING I was told to do, used the products as directed! sometimes side effects happen despite our best efforts to prevent them) good luck and God bless!

      almost 6 years ago
    • sheri56's Avatar

      I had 30 radiation treatments on my left side where I also had a mastectomy. Like Gabba, I was fine with the radiation treatments until the "boost" sessions. Then part of the area started to burn and blister. It was painful and took several weeks to heal. Now, 3 years out of raditation, the entire area is full of small red spider-like veins. Another life time scar of breast cancer :(

      Wishing you well!

      almost 6 years ago
    • baridirects' Avatar

      I had 35 treatments, with the last 5 being the boost to the scar. I'm very fair-skinned, and developed first a sunburn-like reaction, then a progression to frank blistering, despite skin care throughout. I didn't really open up until the last 6 or so treatments...where they did my superclavicular treatments broke open earlier, as the skin is thinner there. Once the blistering began, they started me on Silvadene cream and Domoboro soaks, which were helpful. I finished radiation the Monday before Thanksgiving 2013...by Christmas, I was pretty much healed. The "tan lines" are still visible, as are my tattoo dots, and the texture of the skin has changed a bit - those changes may be permanent, but that's not a major bother.


      almost 6 years ago
    • nikkev11's Avatar

      I had 38 treatments plus 5 boost on the left breast area. The last radiation treatment was January 2013. My left chest area feels like I have a metal plate there. It is hard and painful at times. After my 4th treatment ,my skin started to peel and was raw. I used everything I was told but my skin was very sensitive to the radiation. Thank God I am still here and over the years the skin will loosen.

      almost 6 years ago
    • Samcharlie's Avatar

      I had a lumpectomy, chemo and 35 radiation treatments including 1 boost treatment. I was severely sunburned, used every cream prescribed and was able to continue wearing a bra throughout treatment. My radiation onco had me put the cream on 3 times per day. The creams were different combinations of samples she had plus Aquaphor. The healing started as soon as the treatment ended. I am very pleased with the skin color - I think it is normal and the surgeon says it is the best he has seen. Good luck!

      almost 6 years ago
    • Joy's Avatar

      Thanks for all of your feedback. I should have been more specific. My question should have been problems with radiated skin after having breast reconstruction. I was curious to see if there were a significant amount of people who have had some of the same problems as me. I am going on two years since first starting the reconstruction. This is the short version (LOL): Tissue expanders in June 2012, staph infection July 2012, finally got expanded and had surgery for implants on Decemer 2012, infection in February 2013 where they took implant out on radiated side and put another one in, skin opened up a few weeks later and had to have the implant taken out. I waited several months until Dec 2013 when I had tram surgery. I ended up having necrosis at the incision line due to stomach being attached to radiated skin (I was told I didn't have enough skin). Surgery in January 2014 to clean it up which created a wound, since have had wound vac and am now in hyperbaric oxygen therapy which is going well so far. I have been thinking that women and men need to know about complications before considering doing reconstruction on radiated skin. Thanks for listening!

      almost 6 years ago

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