• Mastectomy and reconstruction, long hard recovery?

    Asked by 2Dakota on Monday, May 20, 2013

    Mastectomy and reconstruction, long hard recovery?

    9 Answers from the Community

    9 answers
    • karen1956's Avatar

      For me NO....I had bilat with immediate recon (tissue expanders)...the first week I was tired and week but each day was better than before...by 2 1/2 weeks post bilat, I was feeling pretty good going about life....went out to lunch with my girl friends, was driving and doing my "normal things"

      over 3 years ago
    • DrShani's Avatar

      The post-surgical experience is often affected by the patient's health prior to surgery. If you were depleted beforehand, then recovery may be longer and harder than average. The good news is there are lots of ways to speed up recovery and get you back to real wellness. Don't hesitate to contact me if you'd like more information.


      Shani Fox, ND
      Natural Primary Care for Cancer Survivors
      [email redacted]

      over 3 years ago
    • Msreje's Avatar
      Msreje (Best Answer!)

      Dear 2Dakota, It has been exactly one year from my mastectomy and reconstruction. I chose to do both procedures at the same time. I did flap reconstruction taking the fat from my belly to reconstruct. The hardest part of all was coming home with drains, there were six. Until they came out it was a challenge. My drains were in for a few weeks. The Dr. prescribed pain killers, I probably took about 4 or 5. As I could not sleep in my bed, I chose the recliner and I slept there for about 2 months. I constantly tried to move, do little things, prepare breakfast for my son, fold laundry, etc. Not easy but the visiting nurse said I had to move. Showering was not fun. It was hard due to the drains. It took me two full months to feel like myself. It is all behind me now and it seems like a foggy dream where I cannot remember certain details. I wish you all the best and may this be a foggy dream for you too one day. Marisa.

      over 3 years ago
    • DorothyV's Avatar

      Not necessarily. Long, but doable. I had mastectomy and tissue expander May 7, 2012. I had chemo then rads ( that seemed like forever at the time). Implant exchange Feb 14, 2013. I look back now and realize that I have come a long way in one year. Stay positive. Good luck:)

      over 3 years ago
    • Nonnie917's Avatar

      Yes, I agree with you. I had a BL mastectomy because of a threat in the left breast. Rather than take chances I chose the BL. I had TRAM flap, but it wasn't enough fat to make breasts so now I am having implants put in. I had three surgeries so close together that I ended up with Acute Kidney failure and anemic from low red cell count. So don't do that. Space your surgeries if you can. God healed me of the kidney problem and iron pills are taking care of the rest. I get my final implant surgery on the 24th of June. It's been 8 months since my last surgery so I have had plenty of time to heal completely so this operation should be a breeze except for the skin stretching pain. Then I have to wait 3 months before I can have the nipples done and then the tattoo. They tattoo the areola so your breast look real again, but I am having roses tattooed on mine. :-) My husband and I thought it would be fun. You hang in their and you will have recovered before you know it. There are a lot of praying people on this site that pray for everybody. I do. I pray that we can all be healed and live normal, fearless lives again.

      over 3 years ago
    • Mel's Avatar

      Not for me either really... I had bilat wih reconstruction (tissue expanders) by 3rd week doing quite a bit of things my problem was drains were in for 3 solid weeks ugh!. to much fluid. by week 4 I was back to work. 1st week your tired on pain meds when feel need, but I tried getting up walking here in there in the house. Oh and once I sat or somewhat laid back or down and got comfy I had bit of a problem getting up didn't realize how much haven't used stomach muscles in awhile :-) I just so hated the drains just the fact they were there bugged me. Wore alot of button down shirts and stretchy pants!. I couldn't shower so my mom would make hair apt at salons just easier to lay back and wash.

      over 3 years ago
    • Nomadicme's Avatar

      It's doable, especially since you won't be getting chemo and or radiation?

      Do you need the mastectomy, or is it prophylactic? It's certainly easier to get a lumpectomy with reconstruction than to go the whole nine yards.

      over 3 years ago
    • debco148's Avatar

      Mastectomy --, no not at all! You'll feel pretty good in a couple of days. I assume your are having expanders put in at time of mastectomy, this requires tender loving care. Not a lot of pain in any of this though. You just have to be careful, check and drain fluid from drains for a bit and minor pulling, numb feeling, etc. No major pain! Just make sure you do no heavy lifting, not even a window, let that expander do its job to stretch the muscle. You'll feel a little like you have an alien in there, but you will get used to it. Good luck!

      over 3 years ago
    • laurie2025's Avatar

      I am almost 2 weeks out from my bilateral mastectomy. No reconstruction for me until later. I still have 2 drains in, which is annoying; and am having some cording in my left arm, which causes tightness and pain there, but will be getting some massages done to help break up that scar tissue. I have some pain and tightness in my chest area, but the skin feels very numb. I take naps every day and get tired pretty easily. Other than that, it's certainly doable.

      over 3 years ago

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