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Post-op pain questions - female

6Judy6
Posts: 1
Joined: Jul 2005

Was diagnosed 4/05 with stage 1a, had surgery 2 months ago and have terrible midriff pain. Can't wear a bra, am taking vicodin mostly in pm

lrrabatt128180
Posts: 23
Joined: Sep 2004

My mom had her surgery in Nov '04 for Stage IIIb lung cancer. I'm not sure if your surgery entailed the same as hers--cracking open her ribs. She ended up having the entire right lung removed. She was in pain for a long time from the surgery. It's July, and she still can't wear a bra for the pain. It may be a long healing process for you. Hang in there!

Plymouthean's picture
Plymouthean
Posts: 264
Joined: Jan 2004

I had 40% of my right lung removed in October, 01. Surgeon went in through my back. He cut one rib. I was 67 at the time, and that probably had something to do with it, but recovery was slow. Pain lasted for months, but does ease up as time passes. Tell mom to try not to be alarmed. As bad as it is, it's normal, and it does go away.

jalexander
Posts: 31
Joined: Nov 2003

I'm a 44 year old male NSCLC 3B survivor. Right lung removed January 2003. I still have pain, but it's better than having cancer. I'm currently investigating some alternatives with my surgeon since I seem to be surviving without cancer. Of course they have offered pain medicine, but I don't especially want to be medicated all the time. I've gotten used to the pain. I've talked with several people over the last couple years with similar surgery. Some are fine after a year or 2 and others have pain ongoing the rest of their lives. A co worker had similar surgery for a heart problem when he was 14 and told me it took all of the next 15 years or so until he felt 100 percent normal again. He's in his mid thirties now. I guess normal is relative after surgery like this.

AuthorUnknown
Posts: 1564
Joined: May 2006

Hang in there Judy. I had right lower lobe removed approx. 2.5 months ago for a cancer called bronchoalveolar carcinoma (a type of adenocarcinoma or NSCLC). I have recovered quite well and am playing tennis, badminton, racketball, etc. Every day will be better and pain will eventually disappear. Stay active though. What type of cancer did you have? I have a theory that one of the causes of BAC is exposure to mold/mycotoxin (toxins secreted by certain mold). Were you ever exposed to mold at work or at home?

I-am-lucky
Posts: 3
Joined: Aug 2005

I can really relate to you. My name is also Judy and I had stage IIB and had 1/3 of my lung removed and 2 pieces of rib in the front were replaced with plastic pieces. This was done in April 2003. I was extremely sore the first 6 months - try wearing one of the sports bras if you need to wear one. I came back to work after 2 months and that's what I did. I still have pain in the same place but not nearly as bad. Wearing a bra all day is irritating. Fortunately I only work from 8:30 - 2:00 so it makes life easier when I can come home and go braless. I also wear a Lidoderm patch over the area that is tender everyday. This way I'm not constantly on vicodin or something else. I'm not a big fan of being doped up. I hope this helps you.

bronstn
Posts: 1
Joined: Aug 2005

Hi Judy:
I was diagnosed stage 1A BAC in May 2004, right upper lobe lobectomy. I had midriff pain for several months. I am back at all my physical activity, but if I do some yoga positions the next day I still have some midriff pain, but much less than one year ago. It does lessen. Arlene

Carolyne
Posts: 1
Joined: Nov 2003

Hi, I also has operation for nslc and it did take awhile to feel better. Just hang in there and make sure you get up and walk a lot!! I didn't and I developed Deep Vein Thrombosis and was back in hospital for two weeks on blood thinners. Passed three clots but survived!! The operation was bad but I am better and alive. Hope you are doing well and healing fast. It does get better. It took me a long time to be able to wear a bra again. I wear one that is all elastic so it feels like I am wearing nothing. My problem to this day is when I bent forward to try and do something. I feel like I have an empty feeling on the side I had two lobes and 3/4 right lung removed. Good excuse to get out of doing chores I hate to do!!! Bye for now
Rose

luckylady1117
Posts: 12
Joined: Sep 2005

Hi Judy: I had half my lung removed on 11/17/03. I still have pain on and off and it's still very painful sometimes to wear a bra. I just keep adjusting it to feel as comfortable as possible while I'm at work and shed it the MINUTE I get home. I figure this discomfort and the pain that I still have on and off is OK as long as I continue to be cancer-free. Good luck and hang in there!!

PattiM
Posts: 6
Joined: Mar 2011

Hi 6Judy6. I don't know if you still check this board, but I'm wondering how you are doing now. I had surgery 3 months ago and am also experiencing terrible midriff pain and wearing a bra is very painful. Just wondering how long I can expect to feel like this?

sissylu1
Posts: 66
Joined: Jan 2011

Patti,
I had my right middle lobe removed the old way (not with vats) December 3rd, 2010..I was off work for 2 months and on vicoden, zanax and lunesta the whole time and still the pain was significant and had trouble sleeping, nothing was able to knock me out so that I could get some good sleep and I am NOT someone who has ever taken meds regualrly.
I am going into my 5th month and I still can't wait to get home at the end of the day to take off my bra..I only take advil or tylenol at times when needed..I feel I am at 70% recovery and have been told it will take a good 6 months to 1 year to start feeling back to my old self.
Walk as much as you can and take deep breaths to strech out the chest muscles as much as possible, it does get better but its baby steps..I spent the weekend out of town for my sons college graduation and was very busy the whole weekend, I was able to keep up but am very tired today-hang in there and if you feel you are not getting any better at all talk to your doctor.

z's picture
z
Posts: 1251
Joined: May 2009

Hello I also had the vats procedure and had a lower right lobe removed. I didn't wear a bra for 5 weeks, then I had to when I went back to work. It just takes time. Did you have vats or the standard where they have to seperate the ribs? I wish you well. Lori

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