Discomfort after nipple saving bilateral mastectomy

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snickerdoodle
snickerdoodle Member Posts: 19
It is now 3 weeks after my bilateral mastectomy. The plastic surgeon put in expanders for reconstruction and my breasts feel so tender. I am not sure what hurts but I go off pain killers and get caught with nothing but lots of pain.
What is all the sensitivity? inside? outside? the expanders? If I change bras that helps, if I take them off that helps for a while, but it seems nothing works all the time.
Is this normal? Any other thoughts about what I might do to relieve discomfort or am I just in a big hurry and it takes time. Thanks

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  • taiga
    taiga Member Posts: 75 Member
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    bilateral with tissue expanders
    I had my nipple sparing bilateral mastectomy with expanders May 1st. I pretty much weaned down to pain pill(s) at night at 3 weeks. But I still take one at bedtime. I had to go back to surgery June 20th. Shortly after the May 1st surgery, I developed a fluid pocket in my armpit where 14 nodes were removed. Then the tissue expander on that side started shifting towards the armpit. Between the drains, which were in for 3 weeks, and the fluid and the shifting expander, I was miserable.

    I had surgery on June 20th to move the expander back and also put a drain in the armpit, so I left with 2 drains which stayed in a little over a week. I haven't even had a fill yet - my first one is tomorrow. I really feel more comfortable not wearing a bra - I don't really need one, it more for cosmetic purposes depending on what I'm wearing. But the insides of my arms down to the elbows are sensitive. It does take time and everyone is different. I don't like taking pain meds but my plastic surgeon has no problem and isn't surprised at all that I still need one at night. Give yourself a major break - we've been through a lot! Make sure you do your exercises, you don't want frozen shoulders. Stay strong, this too shall pass.
  • snickerdoodle
    snickerdoodle Member Posts: 19
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    taiga said:

    bilateral with tissue expanders
    I had my nipple sparing bilateral mastectomy with expanders May 1st. I pretty much weaned down to pain pill(s) at night at 3 weeks. But I still take one at bedtime. I had to go back to surgery June 20th. Shortly after the May 1st surgery, I developed a fluid pocket in my armpit where 14 nodes were removed. Then the tissue expander on that side started shifting towards the armpit. Between the drains, which were in for 3 weeks, and the fluid and the shifting expander, I was miserable.

    I had surgery on June 20th to move the expander back and also put a drain in the armpit, so I left with 2 drains which stayed in a little over a week. I haven't even had a fill yet - my first one is tomorrow. I really feel more comfortable not wearing a bra - I don't really need one, it more for cosmetic purposes depending on what I'm wearing. But the insides of my arms down to the elbows are sensitive. It does take time and everyone is different. I don't like taking pain meds but my plastic surgeon has no problem and isn't surprised at all that I still need one at night. Give yourself a major break - we've been through a lot! Make sure you do your exercises, you don't want frozen shoulders. Stay strong, this too shall pass.

    Starting physical therapy and massage tomorrow
    I told the doctor it really hurt even when i walked and she recommended a more snug jog bra that clips and recommended Lululemon Athletica. Nothing is comfortable all the time and I take a pain killer about 4 times a day. I do not feel any euphoria but the skin is not so sensitive and the physical therapist recommended I give myself a break. I found a bunch of exercises on youtube for breast augmentation and preventing capsular contraction is a big thing. One of my friends ultimately had her implants removed because of that. Her doc did not recommend therapy for almost a year. Mine are sort of rock hard. I am doing mild stretches and mild yoga. since I am a yogi, I know that yoga means "letting go" of muscles that are holding you and sometimes just going into a stretch and waiting and breathing I can feel my chest lets go a little more.
    The therapist said it will be a long time for me because I am thin and my chest wall is so firm. She said heavier out of shape women have an easier time. Ah well.
    I had my first fill last week and it was okay. I am happy to be on my way to getting bigger. I found one youtube video from a girl who just had implants and she said she was having what she called, "the boobie blues". She said that is what happens when you think, "they are not as big as I hoped", "I should have gone bigger", etc. thank goodness for all these women who share and doctors even who post post op exercises. I will wait until my first time tomorrow to see if any of the ones I found on the internet are ones I should be doing or not.I hope you are feeling a bit better and wishing you no more complications.
  • salls41
    salls41 Member Posts: 340
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    Starting physical therapy and massage tomorrow
    I told the doctor it really hurt even when i walked and she recommended a more snug jog bra that clips and recommended Lululemon Athletica. Nothing is comfortable all the time and I take a pain killer about 4 times a day. I do not feel any euphoria but the skin is not so sensitive and the physical therapist recommended I give myself a break. I found a bunch of exercises on youtube for breast augmentation and preventing capsular contraction is a big thing. One of my friends ultimately had her implants removed because of that. Her doc did not recommend therapy for almost a year. Mine are sort of rock hard. I am doing mild stretches and mild yoga. since I am a yogi, I know that yoga means "letting go" of muscles that are holding you and sometimes just going into a stretch and waiting and breathing I can feel my chest lets go a little more.
    The therapist said it will be a long time for me because I am thin and my chest wall is so firm. She said heavier out of shape women have an easier time. Ah well.
    I had my first fill last week and it was okay. I am happy to be on my way to getting bigger. I found one youtube video from a girl who just had implants and she said she was having what she called, "the boobie blues". She said that is what happens when you think, "they are not as big as I hoped", "I should have gone bigger", etc. thank goodness for all these women who share and doctors even who post post op exercises. I will wait until my first time tomorrow to see if any of the ones I found on the internet are ones I should be doing or not.I hope you are feeling a bit better and wishing you no more complications.

    Your therapist must be right
    I am an heavier out of shape woman with expanders. While I have alot of pain, I have been off my pain meds since the 2nd week after surgery. I am finished with my fills and now feel like I have turtle shells for breasts. My biggest complaint is that they wake me up at night as I try to roll over. My pain comes from nerves healing. I am so sorry you are having such a hard time. I did massage every night.. that helped alot erly on. Good luck to you, I hope you find some relief.