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Post-lumpectomy pain from fluid build-up **Update - Revised 11/1**

abrub's picture
abrub
Posts: 1532
Joined: Mar 2010

I am now 2 weeks post-lumpectomy, and my pain level is the worst it has been, and not controlled by meds. Yesterday, my surgeon drained off over 10 cc of fluid from my breast, hoping to give me some relief. However, improvement was negligible. She'll be draining off more tomorrow, but if she can't give me relief is talking about having me back in surgery on Friday.

Anybody been through this? Any thoughts of what I can do to ease healing along? (Btw - my bruising is now all but gone.) It's rough when a combination of Toradol and Vicodin doesn't make a dent in the pain.

Thanks.

Alice

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Today (Oct. 31) my surgeon drained an additional 75+ cc of fluid, and I think I'm feeling a bit better. she wants me back on Friday to drain more and/or place a drain. Her comment was that she sees this type of situation very rarely "once in a blue moon" to quote her. She expects to be draining me several more times.

Now, to nap, as I haven't been sleeping well with all the pain.

******************************************************************************************

Nov. 1 - Back to the surgeon tpday for more fluid aspiration. and back to the OR tomorrow - this just isn't resolving, and she wants to get in there to see what else she can do.

Angie2U's picture
Angie2U
Posts: 2993
Joined: Sep 2009

I'm glad your bruising is gone Alice, and, I am so sorry you are still in so much pain. I hope that the draining will help so you won't have to have anymore surgery. What kind of surgery is your doctor talking about?

Sending hugs,

Angie

abrub's picture
abrub
Posts: 1532
Joined: Mar 2010

I do know that I have no relief from yesterday's aspiration of 10+cc. We'll see if tomorrow can help. Meanwhile, pain meds are not providing relief, and I'm in severe pain.

teresa41's picture
teresa41
Posts: 453
Joined: Jun 2009

I had the same problem with fluid build up sounds
Like the drain may have come out to soon mine stayed in for a month. I' have. Had to go back in for needle aspirations after my first mastectomy. The surgeon put. The drain back in. I had radiation on the side that kept having problems. If fluid keeps building up a drain might need to be put back in you.

I hope it gets better for you

Teresa

Noel's picture
Noel
Posts: 3101
Joined: Apr 2009

Praying that you will get some help with this pain and finally get some relief.

Good luck today,

Noel

Noel's picture
Noel
Posts: 3101
Joined: Apr 2009

Praying that you will get some help with this pain and finally get some relief.

Good luck today,

Noel

abrub's picture
abrub
Posts: 1532
Joined: Mar 2010

An additional 75 cc aspirated today is making a difference. Surgeon wants me back on Friday to aspirate some more. However, for the moment, I'm not in agony.

Rague
Posts: 3334
Joined: Aug 2009

Seromas are not all that unusual - especially when drains are pulled out too soon. A seroma can form after any surgery or blunt force trauma. Very basically, it is a 'pocket' where serum leaks from blood or lymphatic system.

Personally I had one drain removed at 2 week post surgery with no seroma but the other was removed at 4 weeks post and it developed a large seroma. Though it was no longer 'filling up' it was still visiable on the CAT before rads almost 4 mths later (had 12 weekly Taxol during that time).

You might want to ask for a referral to a CERTIFIED LE Therapist (not some PT that claims they know 'all about LE') to get a baseline established. Not meaning to scare you but you have some issues going on now so you may be at a higher risk of developing LE and the sooner you seek info the better. Any surgery of any kind can put one at a potential to develope LE. I deal with LE daily and for me that's all it is - something I deal with. Does not stop me from doing anything I want/need to do. Do not be afraid but gaain knowledge.

Winyan-The Power Within

Susan

laughs_a_lot's picture
laughs_a_lot
Posts: 1368
Joined: Mar 2011

When I went in for an exray at 6 months and it showed suspicious cells that then got removed. After that I has a seroma the size of an egg. My surgeon drained it and felt releived. He wanted to wait until this December to do a bilateral mamogram for a baseline that was clean of all suspicious cells. I still feel as though there is some fluid in there but it is not nearly as much as before. He said he would drain it again and felt that it had been the result of the reincision needing to be done rather soon after the lumpectomy. I also had a large lump 6.6cm at it's largest dimension. I think it was a combination of all those factors.

abrub's picture
abrub
Posts: 1532
Joined: Mar 2010

I have two pools, that correspond to where they ran the wires for the wire localizations I had prior to my surgery.

She'll keep draining as long as they keep filling up. Hopefully, I'll be able to stop pain meds soon so that my husband doesn't have to drive me to every appointment.

Rague
Posts: 3334
Joined: Aug 2009

You haven't said what the fluid looks like - makes a difference. Clear is probably serum even if slightly colored. Cloudy/opaque usually indicates infection.
I know nothing about wires being in or how/when they are removed (at time of surgery or pulled out later?)

abrub's picture
abrub
Posts: 1532
Joined: Mar 2010

I don't know what the fluid looks like. I think it looks like blood. My surgeon has been aspirating it, and I haven't been in a position to see it (nor have I wanted to watch her stabbing me yet again.

The wires are placed before surgery, during a mammogram, with the ends hooked into the questionable masses. I had 2 masses, hence 2 wires. The wires are removed during surgery - the hooked part is removed as part of the mass, to show that the surgeon got the right tissue. The rest is removed when convenient during surgery. Depending on what the wires were made of, my body may have strongly rejected them, hence the extra clotting and fluid. I know I'm allergic to surgical stainless steel. So a couple of hours of having wires in could have messed me up.

My dr sees no indication of infection. She commented that the bleeding first clots post-op, and then re-liquifies, and that she is aspirating the re-liquified blood. As you may recall, I had a gigantic hematoma, much larger than the norm. (The norm is smaller than an orange; mine exceeded the size of a large pineapple, with stem!)

survivorbc09
Posts: 4378
Joined: Jun 2009

I had the wires placed in me also before my lumpectomy. It's to show the surgeon exactly where the tumor is. Mine were placed by ultrasound. That's scary thinking part of the trouble you are having could be because of them.

Just glad you don't have an infection. Keep us posted.

Hugs, Jan

DebbyM's picture
DebbyM
Posts: 3294
Joined: Oct 2009

How are you today? Better?

Hugs, Debby

abrub's picture
abrub
Posts: 1532
Joined: Mar 2010

Basically, after feeling a bit better for a few hours, the pain/pressure built up again, and I was back at the surgeon to be aspirated again this morning. She's now decided a trip to the OR is in store for me, and she'll operate tomorrow, hopefully removing the resting of the problematic draining tissue.

I'm frustrated, but at least there is an end in sight.

cinnamonsmile
Posts: 1049
Joined: Dec 2010

Jeeze, I am so so sorry. I hope the surgery turns out good results for you.

DianeBC's picture
DianeBC
Posts: 3888
Joined: Jun 2009

Darn it! Good luck today! I will be praying for you!

Hugs, Diane

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