Hi Vonne & Appletree
I've just read your posts and although I hadn’t yet joined the forum in May, I did have radiotherapy running through April, May and beginning of June. I have exactly the same as you describe just above my scar although it is not quite as big as you mentioned. I am not really worried as I’ve read that rads can harden the breast somewhat. Also it does take time for internal scar tissue to heal and settle down.
I’ve had my treatment in France (where I live) and don’t have a BCN to ask, as the system is different to the UK. However I’m seeing my surgeon and having my first mammogram after treatment in a couple of months so am going to mention it then, if things are still the same. I have no other issues or problems with my recovery so hopefully this is nothing abnormal either.
Wishing you both well and take care
Brilliant thanks Appletree, in that case it will hopefully go away soon . I’d heard about scar tissue and had presumed it was just on the scar, but it stands to reason that the tissue around that whole area is affected!
i have had a hard patch on my left breast in the vicinity of the lumpectomy scar since surgery, which was on 24 April. I checked with my GP when I saw him a week ago and he was confident it was scar tissue. He also said it might spread a little as a result of the radiotherapy and now rads are over.
To put your mind at rest, you could check with your Breast Care nurse and with your GP.
All the best
I’m not sure if anyone from May Rads will be reading this and I don’t know if this is the right place to ask, but since you all had the rads at the same time as me I thought I’d ask you all here first! Do any of you have the same thing as me going on?!
A little above my lumpectomy scar and much longer than it I have a hard swelling (it’s about 5 inches in length and 3-4 inches in width). It feels even more prominent when I’m lying down. I’m not at all concerned about it because I’ve had it since shortly after rads finished so I’m presuming it’s something to do with the op and the rads.
I was reading the only other posts on the forum that I could see on this but nothing seems to fit the bill. I know this will be a natural thing but what is it? Does it eventually go away and if so how long will it take?
Does anyone else have this?
When you go to the main section, ie radiotherapy, there is a box on the right hand side at the top entitled "Start a new thread" it will then open a box and you will need to put a title in the box of what you want to call it.
If you look as well there is a June 2018 radiotherapy thread that you might want to post on as there are lots of ladies who are currently undergoing rads who will be able to help and support you
Sorry to hear about the side effects on the nipple, that’s a sensitive area anyway without the rads making it even more sensitive! Everyone’s different, but most of us have the same or similar advice.
Expose the area to air frequently, if you can close the curtains and go semi naked sometimes that’s good for it! No sunbathing...keep it well covered! Try and have as little friction against it and wear a soft cotton bra! If you’ve been given a cream by the hospital use it frequently and let it dry in before you put clothes back on, ask your rads dept for cream if they’ve not given you any. Some people find cooling gel helps and the hospital may also provide that so ask them for it, but if they don’t then there may be other suggestions on the forum as to brands (my hospital gave me one but I didn’t find it made any difference and I think it made my sensitivity worse).
Also, ask them for Polymem dressings, these are non adhesive and can sit in your bra. Do NOT take any kind of dressing from them, or from the BC nurse, if there’s even a very slight adhesion on it! Remember this, it’s extremely important!!! Your own GP can order Polymem if you need them.
I’m sure you already know about using perfume free soap, but I was also given Dermol 500 on prescription as a soap substitute and that’s good. Using only water is good if there’s any cracking or infection.
Don’t be hesitant about taking paracetamol to help sensitivity, and if there’s any itching take an antihistamine.
You asked about se on week 1/2/3.
Potential se peak 10-14 days after finishing rads but remember that everyone’s different so you may get no more of a reaction than you have already. However you may also get pinkness, redness, soreness, pains, and you may get tiredness or sudden exhaustion! Drink lots of water (good advice I got from Helena)!
I developed an extreme reaction to it all (am 15 days post rads and still suffering) but that’s not common so don’t worry! Watch out for signs of skin cracking or infection, and more rarely cellulitis or lymphodoema, or if you’re worried about ANYTHING whether big or small, call the rads dept or BC nurse.
The forum is an excellent place to browse for other advice too!
Good luck, and any more advice just ask....someone is bound to be able to help!
Hello May Ladies
As you're just a couple of weeks ahead of me, you may have some advice....please!
Had no chemo.On Hormone treatment. I've had 12 of 15 RT now. Nipple is super sensitive/warm now. Like it's had too much sun (true I guess!). Any suggestions?? It's well moisturised.
Also, how did you feel the side effects went 1/2/3 weeks after finishing?
You've totally described myself in your post. I'm very emotional and my body is on fire. Everything hurts! I'm now on day 22 of treatment and I didn't expect the emotionalism.
This is my first time on this forum. I really relate to what you're saying about getting more emotional. Why would this happen with radiation? I'm not taking any hormone pills yet. I find myself crying over news stories or even happy events.
Congrats Handbagaddict on finishing rads, I know what you mean about feeling slightly lost, on the one hand relieved it is over and on the other hand feeling on your own. I too have been extremely lucky with little or no side effects, other than not sleeping well and fatigue,which again makes me feel bad for Vonne.
Vonne, I hope you start to feel better soon, you seem to have had a bad time of it from day one. I think you need to take one day at a time and try to rest as much as possible. The ladies on here are all here to give you support, gentle hug coming your way. Xxx
Congratulations on finishing rads Handbagaddict, it’s such a relief, isn’t it?! Sorry to read you’re so exhausted, don’t overdo things and be kind to yourself! Here’s hoping the side effects of your skin and scar area keep getting better and not worse and you get some proper sleep soon! Keep us up to date on how things are going with you, it’s lovely that you want to help others too.
Today my GP told me to cancel my work time away with my husband (which I’d already postponed) and to rest up at home for the next 2-3 weeks. She said I’m now seriously at risk of both cellulitis and lymphedema.
Ive got a mild temperature, I’m still a mess, and some parts are even worse with the infection than before, I just feel disgusting and in pain all the time!
I’ve also bizarrely developed oedema in my legs too which surely can’t be anything to do with rads!
As if that’s not enough, the nurse today attached one of the dressings on me with surgical tape despite me telling her that the rad dept said not to use tape. When I got home it had slipped down and underneath where the tape was now feels like my skin is made of Velcro which is constantly ripping apart!
I feel a little lost and alone in all of this despite the hospital and docs being good with their follow up.
You can tell I’m feeling sorry for myself, but I keep trying to remind myself that it could have been a lot worse.
Oh Vonne, so sorry to hear about how much you are suffering at the moment. It sounds truly awful. I do hope though that with all the help you have received of late, it starts to feel better soon and that your healing accelerates!
I finished rads on Thursday having had 15 normal (breath hold sessions) and then 5 boosters. Yay!! Can't believe its all finally over. Oncologist doesnt want to see me again until January and I don't have to see the surgeon until October. So I'm feeling slightly odd....its as if I've been 'cut off' a bit. Still nice to not have to schlepp up to the hospital every day!
In terms of side effects - well, this is where I'm feeling slightly guilty given what Vonne and some others are going through, but apart from some itching and then a slight change in colour to the skin that's been treated, my skin is completely OK at the moment. I'm still being meticulous about my skin care though as I know there's still time for things to change as its all cumulative. I have in the past couple of days been ridiculously tired at times though, it's like I suddenly walked into a wall of fatigue. Trying to keep up the fluids still and rest, but I'm not sleeping too well at night currently so I'm sure that's not helping. Also, my armpit swelled up around my scar area last weekend and was incredibly sore again plus there was a lump there and it felt very similar to how it had all felt post surgery. All gone down again now though and the radiographers just seemed to think it was the scar tissue reacting to the treatment.
Aside from that, I'm starting my tamoxifen this week, so we'll see how that goes. Oncologist was all a bit blase about after care post the immediate 2 weeks post treatment. Said to just let my skin settle down and then just do as I would normally do during the summer - so SPF 30. No need to stay out of the sunand stay in the shadows! All good therefore.
I really hope those that have also recently finished or are still going having started later in May than I did, are doing well and coping with any side effects. This forum has been a tremendous comfort to me whilst going through this whole thing and I do hope i can continue to lend my upport and offer my experiences to others in later threads!
Hi, finished my rads 2 wks ago and thought I was doing ok, however over last couple of days l have started to have stabbing pains in the breast and my nipple is also very tender and sore now too so it seems that from all the reading ive done this seems quite common after, not got any splitting yet so I really feel for you as this is bad enough...I keep moisturising the area as it's really itchy.
Keep going you've come this far..keep strong x