• Ooops! What vehicle do I want to have to get out of after a DM surgery???

    Asked by Grandy on Tuesday, April 30, 2013

    Ooops! What vehicle do I want to have to get out of after a DM surgery???

    We have a van and a Honda car. Which car should we use? And do I need my adult son as well as my husband there to get me out?

    18 Answers from the Community

    18 answers
    • fastdog's Avatar

      I can't advise about DM surgery, because I don't know what that is. But, I have had 2 major, major abdominal surgeries, and both times worried unnecessarily before hospital discharge, about how I would get in and out of our van, how I would be able to use the seat belt, and on and on. I was worried about stepping up into the van, but as it turned out, it was easier to do that than scrunching down into a car seat. So, I would recommend the van. You should be fine with just your husband. Just take getting in and out slowly and you should be fine. Good luck to you!

      over 3 years ago
    • BuckeyeShelby's Avatar

      I agree w/Fastdog. I had a hernia surgery and a hysterectomy. As long as I moved slowly, I had no problems w/cars, couches or stairs. I used a cane for a couple days especially to help me off sofas that eat people, but other than that, no issues at all. MUCH easier than orthopedic surgery! I hope all goes well.

      over 3 years ago
    • leepenn's Avatar

      i assume dm = double mastectomy?
      use whichever car is most comfortable for you.
      one adult should be plenty for getting from the hospital to home.
      a major determinator of pain will be whether you are having reconstruction.
      if you are having reconstruction, you will need more help doing things like putting on shirts... with no reconstruction, the recovery seems to be quite a bit easier.
      i was in the hospital for one night... and then fully independent upon arrival at home. i needed help when i wanted something that was higher than my head, but only for a few days... and most of the time, i just decided i could do without it...
      i was allowed to shower after 48 hours...
      i hope this helps! if you have more specific questions about what to expect, please post again!

      over 3 years ago
    • Grandy's Avatar

      Yes, DM is Double Mastectomy and with reconstruction. I've had surgeries in the past with no issues. But with a DM you can't really use your arms to help you. I don't know if this would change the suggestions.

      Thanks folks!!!

      over 3 years ago
    • cris' Avatar

      When you come home please have a small pillow in the car to put under your seat belt, it helps with the incisions. I only had my husband bring me home quite easy, he did stay home 2 weeks with me to help since I had immediate reconstruction along with the DM. My drains were taken out 10 days after my DM also. Good Luck to you & hope all goes well!!!

      over 3 years ago
    • Grandy's Avatar

      Yes, Cris, I actually copied and pasted suggestions to me and other DM patients and have studied about pillows etc!!! :)

      I have hubby on Monday, and my adult children the rest of the week... Still working out that next week.

      over 3 years ago
    • Cheryl2's Avatar

      We drive a Chevy 2500 truck. They took me down in a wheelchair. DH had a stool for me to step up on and I could grab the bar above the door (you probably won't be able to do that) and step in slowly. Our neighbor had DM and it took 3 people to get her into their class A motorhome that they live in. Seems like an extra person might be helpful.

      over 3 years ago
    • karen1956's Avatar

      I have a suburban and my DH has a sedan....after all my surgeries I came home in his car...mostly because he was the person driving.....I drove my "big bertha" suburban when I was allowed to drive post surgery...bilat was the one with the driving restrictions....

      over 3 years ago
    • whirl's Avatar

      The car was never an issue. My only problem was reaching and sleeping. I am a tummy sleeper. I had expanders put in at the time of surgery. If I laid on my back the pressure of the expanders were too much, if on my tummy it didn't like it either. What I finally did was put a pillow under my abdomen and of course my head. This acted as a bridge to let the expanders hang suspended.
      When I tried this I could get some sleep. Good luck with your surgery.

      over 3 years ago
    • sewfun928's Avatar

      I would say the van, it's up higher and you won't have to push up to get out. I also had the hospital give me a heart shaped pillow to put under the seatbelt. I will tell you that pillow came in handy for a long time, I used it under my arm then I used it when I had my port put in. Good luck to you.

      over 3 years ago
    • Grandy's Avatar

      I'm a tummy sleeper too, Whirl. Thanks for that pillow advice! And thanks to the rest of you too!

      over 3 years ago
    • JennyMiller's Avatar

      I vote for the Van. I think you will be surprised how well you will be able to do on your own. The big issues for me were the inability to reach up and the inability to sleep on my side. I wish you the best.

      over 3 years ago
    • Snooks' Avatar

      The Honda car will do. As long as you don't strain your arms getting in and out of the car, you should not have a problem. Just take it slow and easy. After both of my mastectomies, I did not need any one to help me in or out. In fact, my family and friends were camping in the mountains in our motorhomes, and I went to join them after my surgeries. I think the relaxing mountain setting helped me to heal faster. Good Luck and God Bless

      over 3 years ago
    • MillieS's Avatar

      I had bilateral mastectomies no implants but node removal under right arm. I would recommend the car simply because you won't have to pull yourself up into it. One adult should be enough to assist you. Best of luck to you. I didn't find it as painful as I thought it would be. Hope yours is as easy too! Hugs

      over 3 years ago
    • debco148's Avatar

      The only thing I remember was that bouncing was too annoying. So whichever car bounces over bumps less. Other than that there was no real pain. Your ability to reach and stretch is limited for a while, but other than that you will surprised how tolerable this is. Also, I found that those little pillows that they often give at the cancer centers, shaped like a half moon were wonderful. I'd put if under my arm and it would prop my arm so that it wouldn't hurt, also protects you from the seat belt in the car.

      over 3 years ago
    • Julie99's Avatar

      Same advice on the pillow. My cancer center has a local hs home ec class make pillows they give out for this. About 18 inches long and round tube like (think the fancy decortive bed pillows) which work PERFECT under the seat belt.
      My nurse told me to sit in the back seat, away from the airbag too, in case there was an accident and how much that would hurt going off in my chest.
      Just practice getting up and down while keeping your arms across your chest to get an idea of what it will be like getting around for those first couple of weeks. NO reaching up or pulling yourself with anything.
      Best of luck and you will be great!

      over 3 years ago
    • kickasscowgirl's Avatar

      Hi Grandy,
      I would say the Honda Car is best, no climbing. And have your favorite squishy pillow from home brought in for you to use in the hospital bed after the surgery and to hold against your front in the car on the drive home. I went home after 2 days.

      I had both breasts removed last Wednesday, but no reconstruction. I was up and going to the bathroom that night, with a nurse standing by, then walking the next day down the halls with the nurse or family member. You'll have more use of your arms than you think, but not for pushing or lifting yourself off the bed. Walking at the hospital before discharge helped a lot with confidence too, that I could do more self care than I thought.

      Getting comfortable in bed at the hospital and at home helps most with lots of pillows. Pain Management will be important, especially after the IV's are taken out. I write down the time and if I take the full dose of Vicodin or not. They definitely wear off in almost exactly 4 hours, so taking 400mg or 600mg Ibuprofen about 3 hours after the Vicodin helped me a lot the first few days not to have break-through pain.

      I'll be thinking of you when you go in on Friday... I'm one week out and doing better than I thought, so that's my hope for you!
      {{Big Hug}} Gigi

      over 3 years ago
    • Grandy's Avatar

      Hello BootieBumpin'BovineGal. Thanks! It's nice to hear from someone who is RIGHT in front of me in this!!

      And thanks to everybody.. I have much more of a sense of this now!

      over 3 years ago

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