Dec 09, 2013 - 9:13 pm
I had surgery #3 three days ago to continue reconstruction. Three months ago I had "BMX with direct to implants" which is a one and done operation. Unfortunately I developed an infection in the hospital that caused surgery #2 fourtenn days after the first one. The plastic surgeon had to remove necrotic (dead) parts of three muscles and lots of soft tissue under my arm and about 1/4 of the skin covering the implant, as well as the implant itself. There was no longer enough skin to cover it. Instead I got a tissue expander to try to grow some new skin in order to put in another implant. It took another three weeks on IV antibiotics to finally chase the infection away and start the saline fills into the TE.
Surgery #3 went fine. I was really nervous about another infection, but fingers crossed, so far so good. They took out the TE and replaced it with a smaller anatomical implant. They also took out the "good implant" that had never given me a minute of trouble in 3 months. I was sorry to lose it, but it was so much bigger, it had to be replaced with an implant to match the other side.
This surgery is much more painful than the last one. Most of the people I've talked to who had the exchange procedure breezed through it. My plastic surgeon had created pockets for the first implants in surgery#1 but now they were too big. That would cause these new implants to move around, which isn't good. So he had to reconstruct smaller pockets. Ouch! My ribs are killing me. I was not expecting this pain and was pretty upset at first since I'm allergic to narcotics of all kinds and can only take Tylenol. Today is better than yesterday so by next week I should be fine. I wish someone had told me that exchange surgery isn't always a walk in the park.