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Tram Flap Reconstruction

neenie
Posts: 13
Joined: May 2002

Hi Everyone!

I'm a 6 yr. inflammatory breast cancer survivor, and will be ending tamoxifen treatment in September. Now I'm seriously considering tram flap reconstruction. The plastic surgeon said I'd be back to work (desk job) 2 weeks after surgery. Is this realistic? I'd like to hear from those who had this type of reconstruction. I want to hear the good and bad so I can make an informed decision. I'm 46 yrs. old and have worn a prothesis for 6 yrs. I really hate the prothesis because it slides around, but I want to stay healthy. Is reconstruction worth the risk of complications (i.e., hernia)? Thanks for any information you can offer. Neenie

carolh's picture
carolh
Posts: 19
Joined: Jul 2000

Hi Neenie: I am amazed that your doctor said you'd be back at work after 2 weeks. I had a TRAM 18 months ago and was told I'd be off at least 8 weeks. In fact I took 10 weeks off work and I really needed that time, too. I had a double TRAM (6-1/2 hour surgery), so perhaps that's why I needed longer to recover. Make no mistake, the TRAM is a HUGE operation. Having said that, I highly recommend it and certainly have no regrets. I know what you mean about the prosthesis - I hated it, too.
Best wishes, Carol (Vancouver, BC)

doris36
Posts: 16
Joined: Jul 2002

Hi Neenie! I am 6 weeks out of tram flap surgery and feeling great! I had a mastectomy with the recon at the same time. I am 36 years old with stage 1 ductal carcinoma. I still have to go through chemo so my recon won't be complete for a while, but so far so good. I went to the PS last week who said everything looked good and I could do just about everything except lift over 5 lbs. (I have 3 small children - so I did "go back to work" about 2 weeks after my surgery.) The surgery was tough, but not too bad. See if your Dr offers an epidural for pain management - it worked great! And expect to be numb throughout most of your torso, which probably helps to keep some of the pain away. The worst pain I felt was if I coughed, sneezed or laughed, other than that it's bearable. Hope this helps - feel free to email at DorisFinn@msn.com

doris36
Posts: 16
Joined: Jul 2002

Hi Neenie! I am 6 weeks out of tram flap surgery and feeling great! I had a mastectomy with the recon at the same time. I am 36 years old with stage 1 ductal carcinoma. I still have to go through chemo so my recon won't be complete for a while, but so far so good. I went to the PS last week who said everything looked good and I could do just about everything except lift over 5 lbs. (I have 3 small children - so I did "go back to work" about 2 weeks after my surgery.) The surgery was tough, but not too bad. See if your Dr offers an epidural for pain management - it worked great! And expect to be numb throughout most of your torso, which probably helps to keep some of the pain away. The worst pain I felt was if I coughed, sneezed or laughed, other than that it's bearable. Hope this helps - feel free to email at DorisFinn@msn.com

shirlann
Posts: 235
Joined: Oct 2001

Hi, Neenie, my daughter-in-law just had this surgery and I don't think 2 weeks in unrealistic, provided you are not hanging wall board? She really looks nice, I would go for it. If you have to stay home another few days or a week, so what? Just say, dang. Hugs, Shirlann

banker
Posts: 321
Joined: May 2002

Hi Neenie, go for it, I had Tram Flap 3 yrs ago, went back to work after 8 weeks, desk job -banker. Could not lift anything over 5 lbs. Otherwise all went well, I like the result. Glad I did it, I am 58 now. If you have any questions just e-mail me. God luck and best wishes...Love Emmi

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