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Extreme swelling 8 weeks post surgical

Sdawells
Posts: 23
Joined: Nov 2012

Over the past 5 or 6 days both breasts have become swollen and painful. I had a double mastectomy in September with the placement of expanders. Because I am not compltely healed yet I still haven't had any fills. I am now in as much pain as I was 2 weeks after. Can anyone offer some words of advice? Thanks

SIROD's picture
SIROD
Posts: 2132
Joined: Jun 2010

I never had reconstruction surgery. I have had a lot of soft tissue surgeries and usually soft tissue is healed in 6 weeks. I would certainly call a doctor or surgeon.

Best,

Doris

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

Please call your surgeon and let us know what you find out.

Hugs, Noel

Rague
Posts: 3305
Joined: Aug 2009

Call your surgeon and talk to him/her.

I haven't had recon but I would think that if pain has come back along with swelling and you have not healed - a call, at least, to Dr would be in order ASAP.

Winyan - The Power Within

Susan

Sdawells
Posts: 23
Joined: Nov 2012

Turns out I have an infection. PS drained about 100cc from my right breast, I felt so much better. The next morning I could barely move I was so swollen, then around lunch time the damm broke. I got up from the couch to discover I was soaked. Long story short, I seem to have a lot of fluid built up and it has to go somewhere. Went through 3 changes of clothes yesterday and lost track of the towels. See the PS on Friday and hopefully the antibiotics will take care of the problem. I feel like I'm never going to heal. I can't start chemo u.til I'm healed.

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

Sorry you have an infection. I am very glad that you got into see your doctor! Hoping the antibiotics will clear it up for you fast.

Sdawells
Posts: 23
Joined: Nov 2012

Turns out I have an infection. PS drained about 100cc from my right breast, I felt so much better. The next morning I could barely move I was so swollen, then around lunch time the damm broke. I got up from the couch to discover I was soaked. Long story short, I seem to have a lot of fluid built up and it has to go somewhere. Went through 3 changes of clothes yesterday and lost track of the towels. See the PS on Friday and hopefully the antibiotics will take care of the problem. I feel like I'm never going to heal. I can't start chemo u.til I'm healed.

jnl's picture
jnl
Posts: 3873
Joined: May 2009

Glad you're feeling better. Hoping your doctor's visit today will help you to get thru this.

Hugs, Leeza

Sdawells
Posts: 23
Joined: Nov 2012

Turns out I have an infection and the fluids are pouring out of the small area that hasn't healed yet. They may have toMurphys Law to Susans Law. Lol

Sdawells
Posts: 23
Joined: Nov 2012

Sorry for all the repeat posts. Gotta quit using my tablet for this

Different Ballgame's picture
Different Ballgame
Posts: 870
Joined: Jan 2010

Once you have an infection in the breast with the expanders, the expanders need to be removed, so you can heal correctly. It will take a long time to heal. After you are totally healed, new expanders are inserted in the breast. This is an operation

It is extremely difficult to heal an infection when you have the expanders...it seems that the infection likes to hug the expanders. This is the reason the expanders are removed.

I had an infection in the left breast five weeks after the mastectomy/expander insertion and an infection in the right breast 7 weeks later. Took many months for the incisions to heal.

I will tell you that having implants for me was worth everything I went through. It took 2 years for the total breast reconstruction to be completed. Be patient with your healing.

Lots of Hugs,
Janelle

cinnamonsmile
Posts: 1049
Joined: Dec 2010

Thank you for posting that!!! That is the first time I have heard of that since I joined in 12-2010!!!! That really is important to know and pass on!!!

Pink Rose
Posts: 495
Joined: Nov 2012

I've never heard or read of this either. I've learned so much by being on this site. Hoping you're doing well now.

Sdawells
Posts: 23
Joined: Nov 2012

You are right. I had emergency surgery on Friday to remove my expanders and clean everything out. They found an abscess that would have continued to plague me and could have caused some major problems. At this point in time I am focusing on healing so that I can get going on my chemo. I will always have the option of reconstruction but after all of this it's hard to imagine. I was a bit shocked by how different I looked without the expanders and am a bit depressed about it but as with all of this I will look for the good in it. I can say now that I feel almost no pain after over 7 weeks of constant pain. I guess everything happens for a reason. Thanks for your words of encouragement!

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

Glad the constant pain is gone and that you can now start healing. When do you start chemo? I will keep you in my prayers.

Hugs, Angie

VickiSam's picture
VickiSam
Posts: 8255
Joined: Aug 2009

I was on vacation with my family in Arizona - Grand Canyon when I developed a fever,
proceeded by several days of redness -- then swelling of my right fully expanded
tissue expander. Staph infection, 5 day hospital stay, emergency surgery -- and so
on.

I had a bilateral, so once my right tissue expander was removed .. my plastic surgeon
had me wait months, before he would replace my 'right' TE. So I walked around
lopsided for months. I was not happy, but it is doable.

Gentle hugs and prayers for you dear Sister in PINK.

Vicki Sam

survivorbc09
Posts: 4378
Joined: Jun 2009

Lots of gentle hugs!

Zappit
Posts: 7
Joined: Nov 2012

Hi, I'm so glad you posted this. I just had a bilateral mastectomy last Monday. They inserted tissue expanders at the same time. I am still pretty swollen and the left side doesn't even look like I had a mastectomy. I'm watching carefully because I know infections are real problem. After reading about your issues I will be super cautious. Thank you so much for sharing this! Hugs!

VickiSam's picture
VickiSam
Posts: 8255
Joined: Aug 2009

How are you doing? Recovering from emergency surgery takes a while. Hoping
all is well.

Please post when you can.

Strength, Courage and HOPE for a Cure.

Vicki Sam

Sdawells
Posts: 23
Joined: Nov 2012

I can't begin to say how much better I feel. The infection was causing me more pain then I realized. Now I am almost healed and will get my stitches and staples out on Monday. My chemo is scheduled to start on the 29th. I no longer am looking at reconstruction, and am o.k. with living with prothesis(sp). I guess at this point I am just feeling blessed to have minimal pain. I confess to being a bit scared of chemo. So many questions and my vanity about losing my hair is a bit hard to deal with. Thanks for all the well wishes. May we all see this terrible cancer wiped out in our life times!

salls41's picture
salls41
Posts: 340
Joined: Apr 2012

I was 10 days away from my exchange surgery and had to have my expanders removed (Sept 1) due to infection. It was as if I had the mastectomy all over again.. hard to look in the mirror for a while. I am better about it now. I wish you luck with your chemo, I hope you have few side effects!
Sandy

cinnamonsmile
Posts: 1049
Joined: Dec 2010

I am glad that you are feeling so much better. How frustrating and painful it sounds like it was! I had a double mastectomy with no reconstruction, so I had a different mind set than one who wanted reconstruction and had to be deconstructed. It does take some time to heal and get used to being flat. Hopefully you had or will have a good experience with a fitter. I do hope that you went to a mastectomy place or Nordstrom's to get bras and prosthetics.

Reconstruction can always be done at a later time. I know you must be disappointed, but healing and being pain free (or as much as you can be) and getting onto your chemo is more important.

If you have any problems or need help with anything while you are on chemo, be sure to post. There are so many men and women on here that can help. I see so many tips for chemo, that I have them written on a document so I can copy and paste them to those that need it.

I wish for that your chemo wipes out your cancer with minimal side effects.

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

It's good to know that you're better now. Wishing you good luck with chemo this week!

Hugs, Angie

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