Lymph...? fluid buildup

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eihtak
eihtak Member Posts: 1,473 Member
Hi, so I had a double mastectomy on March 21 (about 2.5 months ago), all has gone well for the most part. I did have to have the build-up of fluid in my armpit (2 nodes removed) drained 3 times at follow-up appointments. I do stretches and have quite a bit of strength back in both arms with great range of motion. My question is...I still have a small area in my armpit where the fluid I assume still builds up, is this normal or should I be still going in to have it drained? My surgeon said to call if problems but don't know that its really a problem or not. Does it ever completely go away, or not? It doesn't hurt, just seems weird after this long. I do see my Onc Doc later next week, but this is more of my surgeons thing. Any opinions, thanks! As always, all in my prayers.

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  • Frankie Shannon
    Frankie Shannon Member Posts: 457
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    I also had fluid in the
    I also had fluid in the right arm pit and had it drained but now i do have swelling that wont go away or can not be drained.It is a form of lymphodema but instead of being in the arm it's in the are pit since only 2 nodes where removed.Your onc is the to talk to about it.You get use to it and it doesn't hurt.And my understanding it never goes away.
    Hugs Frankie
  • Melaniedoingwell
    Melaniedoingwell Member Posts: 80
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    lymphedema
    You may want to seek a lymphedema specialist.

    Deep belly breathing can help. Inhale fully and allow your belly to expand when you do so, sucking it in as you exhale. This drops your diaphragm and allows your lymphatic system to effectively become a vaccuum and pull excess fluid out of your extremities and disperse it properly.
  • moths
    moths Member Posts: 9
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    lymphedema
    You may want to seek a lymphedema specialist.

    Deep belly breathing can help. Inhale fully and allow your belly to expand when you do so, sucking it in as you exhale. This drops your diaphragm and allows your lymphatic system to effectively become a vaccuum and pull excess fluid out of your extremities and disperse it properly.

    lymphedema
    I had a lot of lymph nodes removed and had lymphedema in the arm pit are, arm and hand. I had lymph node transplant surgery a year and a half ago and I no longer have the swelling. If you have a problem with the swelling, it can be fixed with the transplant surgery.
  • moths
    moths Member Posts: 9
    Options

    lymphedema
    You may want to seek a lymphedema specialist.

    Deep belly breathing can help. Inhale fully and allow your belly to expand when you do so, sucking it in as you exhale. This drops your diaphragm and allows your lymphatic system to effectively become a vaccuum and pull excess fluid out of your extremities and disperse it properly.

    lymphedema
    I had a lot of lymph nodes removed and had lymphedema in the arm pit are, arm and hand. I had lymph node transplant surgery a year and a half ago and I no longer have the swelling. If you have a problem with the swelling, it can be fixed with the transplant surgery.
  • moths
    moths Member Posts: 9
    Options

    lymphedema
    You may want to seek a lymphedema specialist.

    Deep belly breathing can help. Inhale fully and allow your belly to expand when you do so, sucking it in as you exhale. This drops your diaphragm and allows your lymphatic system to effectively become a vaccuum and pull excess fluid out of your extremities and disperse it properly.

    lymphedema
    I had a lot of lymph nodes removed and had lymphedema in the arm pit are, arm and hand. I had lymph node transplant surgery a year and a half ago and I no longer have the swelling. If you have a problem with the swelling, it can be fixed with the transplant surgery.
  • Frankie Shannon
    Frankie Shannon Member Posts: 457
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    moths said:

    lymphedema
    I had a lot of lymph nodes removed and had lymphedema in the arm pit are, arm and hand. I had lymph node transplant surgery a year and a half ago and I no longer have the swelling. If you have a problem with the swelling, it can be fixed with the transplant surgery.

    I didn't know you could have
    I didn't know you could have node transplant surgery,this form just amazes me with all the info you learn that the Dr. and surgeons don't tell you.Thanks so much for the info.
    Hugs Frankie
  • moths
    moths Member Posts: 9
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    I didn't know you could have
    I didn't know you could have node transplant surgery,this form just amazes me with all the info you learn that the Dr. and surgeons don't tell you.Thanks so much for the info.
    Hugs Frankie

    lymphedema
    Hi Frankie,

    The doctor that did the surgery is one of the 2 or 3 doctors in the country pioneering the surgery. If you find that you need information on this, let me know and I will give you the doctor's name and contact info.

    Karen
  • jnl
    jnl Member Posts: 3,869 Member
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    lymphedema
    You may want to seek a lymphedema specialist.

    Deep belly breathing can help. Inhale fully and allow your belly to expand when you do so, sucking it in as you exhale. This drops your diaphragm and allows your lymphatic system to effectively become a vaccuum and pull excess fluid out of your extremities and disperse it properly.

    I don't know, but, it might
    I don't know, but, it might be lymphedema? Talk to your doctor and if it is, seek out a lymphedema specialist or physical therapist that knows how to treat this.

    Good luck,

    Leeza
  • Rague
    Rague Member Posts: 3,653 Member
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    Seroma
    If when you say the Dr 'drained' it, you mean he aspirated (stuck a needle in and pulled fluid out) it - then it is a seroma. Not unusal with breast or abdominal surgery. It is a 'pocket' where the serum from the damaged blood vessels collects. They usually appear after the drains are removed. In my case mine did after my last drain was taken out.. It was still draining more than idea to remove it but surgeon thought that the drain itself was causing irritation so he removed it. It had to be drained several times and was still visiable on a CAT scan over 9 mths later. It will eventually resolve itself. Do be careful for any signs of infection though.

    Lymphedema is a very different type of swelling. It can not be pulled out of a 'pocket'. It is managed by elevation, compression garments and MLD (Manual Lymphatic Drainage - done by therapist/self and/or machine). It would be a good idea to get an appt with a Certified LymphEdema Therapist now to get a base line established. It is possible to develope LE with just one node removed.

    Winyan - The Power Within

    Susan
  • Frankie Shannon
    Frankie Shannon Member Posts: 457
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    moths said:

    lymphedema
    Hi Frankie,

    The doctor that did the surgery is one of the 2 or 3 doctors in the country pioneering the surgery. If you find that you need information on this, let me know and I will give you the doctor's name and contact info.

    Karen

    Karen that would be
    Karen that would be great.Thank You
    Hugs Frankie
  • Angie2U
    Angie2U Member Posts: 2,991
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    Rague said:

    Seroma
    If when you say the Dr 'drained' it, you mean he aspirated (stuck a needle in and pulled fluid out) it - then it is a seroma. Not unusal with breast or abdominal surgery. It is a 'pocket' where the serum from the damaged blood vessels collects. They usually appear after the drains are removed. In my case mine did after my last drain was taken out.. It was still draining more than idea to remove it but surgeon thought that the drain itself was causing irritation so he removed it. It had to be drained several times and was still visiable on a CAT scan over 9 mths later. It will eventually resolve itself. Do be careful for any signs of infection though.

    Lymphedema is a very different type of swelling. It can not be pulled out of a 'pocket'. It is managed by elevation, compression garments and MLD (Manual Lymphatic Drainage - done by therapist/self and/or machine). It would be a good idea to get an appt with a Certified LymphEdema Therapist now to get a base line established. It is possible to develope LE with just one node removed.

    Winyan - The Power Within

    Susan

    Have you spoken or seen
    Have you spoken or seen your doctor yet about this fluid build up? Please let us know what you find out.

    Prayers and hugs,

    Angie
  • moths
    moths Member Posts: 9
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    Karen that would be
    Karen that would be great.Thank You
    Hugs Frankie

    lymphedema
    Hi Frankie,
    The doctor that did my reconstruction and lymph node transplant is: Dr. Jay Granzow. His phone is: 310-882-6261. He does vascularized lymph node transfer (VLNT), lymphaticovenous anastomosis (LVA) and specialized lymphatic liposuction. He is the only doctor in the country to do all three of these lymph surgeries. I know that they accept all kinds of insurance and take patients from all over the country.

    I hope that this helps!

    Karen