Hi Crochet addict
My WLE/SNB was day case and all I took was (on the advice of my bcn as a just incase) - nightie, clean nicks and a toothrush in case an emergency overnight stay was needed.
Never used of course! - so I had my kindle and my phone. Didn't bother with dressing gown and slippers as most of the time in own clothes until gowned and soxed ready for op and as all ladies together didn't need a dressing gown for the odd trip to the loo and used shoes as slipper substitute. A cardie might be useful just to slip on top if a bit chilly
Didn't spend much time in gown after op as was up and dressed and out the door in a couple of hours
You may need a bra you can get on easily for afterwards - I couldn't wear a normal bra for a couple of months till the snb scar settled so lived in crop tops which I could pull up from floor if necessary
HTH and best of luck
I am sorry that you are having a bad day today, a lot of it can probably be put down to the aneasthetic which stays in your system for a while and can cause you to feel low and tearful. You may find, in your own time, that counselling will help you to come to terms with what has happened, it can help to talk to someone who is not connected to you in any way so you do not have to worry about upsetting anyone.
Just wanted to send you a nice gentle hug
Having a bad day today, lots and lots of tears. Going to see nurse on 21st to have dressing off, I don't see surgeon for results till 28th(which is hard to bear) and appointment for prothesis on 25th January. Got a blow dry booked at hairdresser this afternoon as I can't cope with the hairdryer. Feeling very low, keep being told to have counselling but the last thing I can do is talk about it, or look at it.
Hi crochet addict, So good you don't have to wait another week, the waiting was the worst part for me I think. I was in hospital for two nights and I found my pack of baby wipes most useful, also a 'Take a Break' magazine, cheesy, but the little puzzles were just enough to keep the fuzzy brain cells occupied!
I had my drain removed today, by the district nurse! wow! ouch!!!
Now I am bathed, dressed, got my softie in place and starting to feel more like my old self!
Hi, Mrs G, Hope all is well with you and you don't have to have the drains for much longer, mine was really hurting where it went in, such a relief to have it gone!
@Reddi thoughts are with you with the op, hope everything goes well. xx
essexgirly2 & MrsG1962 hope you are both recovering well. xx
I have just had a phone call from the hospital they have a cancellation for this thursday, I am over the moon only tomorrow to get through as apposed to another week. I'm only in for the day and my hospital letter might not arrive, apart from taking the obvious slippers, dressing gown can anyone recommend anything else to take. xxx
@crochet addict What a drag! Will you get to meet your new surgeon this week? I hope so.
@Magsv You're welcome!
@MrsG1962 A second thank-you for the Cancer Research pointer -- I suspect I won't finish hand-stitching my eye mask by Wednesday (can't find the elastic I bought for the strap!), so bought a plush back-up. Worst case, I find the elastic and sew up a storm and my OH gets it in his stocking.
@essexgirly2 & MrsG1962 Hope you're both cosily resting and recuperating.
I hope everything goes well for you, will be thinking of you xx
My consultant meeting went ok but my operation has been put back to the 19th now. I'm anxious as i am to have a new surgeon and the consultant couldn't pronounce his name ! I'm sure all will go well it's just having another week of anxiety and trying to keep positive thoughts in my head.
Just a quickie before I drag myself to bed! I think I'll have the drain for a few more days, still oozing and very sore where it goes in on my left side. I think it is just the drain that is giving me grief.
Journey home was bumpy, husband did his best but the potholes round here! OMG! We have changed sides of the bed so I can sleep on my good side and can get out to the loo easier ... I don't know how he will sleep on the 'wrong' side! lol..
Best wishes to all... X
Hi Mags, Friday i was scared but the hospital staff were great, especially in recovery. I was in a great deal of pain and had a big dose of morphine - i felt wonderful. Today (Saturday) is a different story. I have been nagged by nursing staff for low blood pressure! Not a lot i can do, it's always been like that! Going home tomorrow. And will have ditrict nurses come in as i still have a drain. Very sore and had scant attention. They wantedme gone today but i could not stand the drive, every movementis painful and i am dreading getting in the car. I won'tget results till after Christmas. Feeling very low. Wish i could have a shower or even a wash. Excuse awful typing/grammar.
@MrsG1962 and @essexgirly2 Seconding what @Magsv said -- and I hope you are recovering well today! I also hope any pre-surgery jitters have settled. I know I certainly wouldn't have signed up for this particular life event, and I'm feeling nervous, too. I think that's totally natural with such a major surgery -- major, no matter how much tissue is removed, because of the underlying reason for it as well as the effects the surgery has on both mind and body.
@crochetaddict How did your meeting with your consultant go? I hope you got all your questions answered. It seems we'll be the two in this thread having surgery this week -- though, of course, some late-comers might join our party. I'll be thinking of you on Wednesday.
@Pulapula Our journeys seem to have been somewhat similar, with neoadjuvant chemo, then some choice between a very wide WLE and a Mx. And I, too, work for myself from home, and recovery was a factor -- though for me, it was more a factor in considering whether to go for immediate or delayed reconstruction. I just felt I'd like to try immediate, since I knew I wanted reconstruction and I'd prefer one big surgery to two. We'll see if my body agrees to that plan!
Apologies for being so quiet this week -- I've been busy consenting to surgery and going through pre-surgery assessment, with this coming week no better, with more pre-surgery bloodwork, Herceptin injection (first post-chemo), follow-up with oncology, and check-up with ophthalmology (for an inflammation in one eye that seems to be a side effect of chemo) squashed into Monday through Wednesday. So I may be quiet again til I'm discharged home next weekend. I'll be thinking of all of you and eager to hear reports when/if you're ready.
As to me, I've signed on the dotted line for the lumpectomy on the left and the mastectomy on the right with immediate reconstruction using a prepectoral implant. Fingers crossed, the implant will take and my margins will be clear, and at most I'll need a little lipo top-up surgery to balance things up in late 2019 or 2020. At this point, though, I'm prepared (as much as I can be) for any turn of events.
@Magsv Thanks for your packing list. I think I've now got my list sorted, but I'll have to pare back a bit in order to fit it into a suitable bag: button-front PJs, thick nonslip socks (cold feet!), front-closing sports bra (probably not required in my case), drain dolly, earplugs, eye mask, toothbrush & toothpaste & hand sanitizer & moisturizer (for my post-chemo care regime), throat lozenges, dandelion tea bags, book, mobile phone & charger & extra battery & headphones, and thank-you card for the nurses on the ward (my mother was a nurse, which is why I do this). I'm hoping to wear in what I wear out, but if my shirt doesn't fit over the swelling and bandages, my stretchy jersey PJ top should.
I got some post-mastectomy pillows from the fabulous Jen's Friends (if you're having surgery, I highly recommend them -- they were great after my sentinel lymph node biopsies in the summer). However, I don't know that I can fit them in my bag, so either my OH half will need to bring them to me in the ward after surgery, or I'll just leave them at home. (I have to report at 7:30am, so I'm going in on my own -- my OH is not a morning person.)
One nice early present: I found out that I'll only have drains on the mastectomy side, and I'm being given a type that I don't empty myself: they're vacuum-sealed, so if they get full, I have to go into the hospital to have them emptied. I'm going to have to be sure I know what to do if they need attending to on the holidays, especially as both my surgeon and my breast care nurse will be on annual leave. Tis the most wonderful time of the year!
Welcome to the forum. I send my best wishes to you, and can empathise with your dilemma as to the best option. I had a triple positive tumour, but, although it completely resolved with chemo, I had a large area of dcis, so a mastectomy ended up being my only option. I still need radiotherapy to prevent recurrence, so I wasn't able to have an immediate implant. Although I wasn't happy about having a mastectomy, I did feel pleased to think that I am cancer free, as my nodes were negative too.
Good luck with whatever you decide.
Hi Mags, it is strange isn’t it how different it feels once the decision is made. Will certainly let you know how I get on and if I have any tips ( or things I wish I’d taken in with me ) I will let you know.
take care xx Melanie
Hi Essex Girly I’m so pleased you’ve managed to get the guidance and advice you needed. Must admit my surgeon is brilliant, I’ve got so much confidence in her, so when she told me it was non negotiable and I have to have a mastectomy and loose my nipple I felt really calm about it. Funny how once the final decision is made you get an almost serenity and ability to concentrate on what needs to be done.
Good luck for the radio active dye and for Friday and let’s both look forward to Friday night when we can actually get some sleep xx Melanie
Hi Magsv, I feel we have been down a very similar path in the way we have agonised over what choice to make, but, as I have explained in my post to Mrs G. I really just wanted some 'guidance' which I got today, and now I am happy (well, as happy as I can be about losing a breast) but at least I am not sobbing every half an hour like I have for the last couple of weeks!
I was told that the recovery was very similar in both operations, drains with both, but I am not worried about a night or two in hospital, I worry more about being sent home 'not quite ready' as happened with my hysterectomy 25 years ago (I ended up in hospital for another week after being sent home too early)
I want to 'move on'. We get the keys to our new house on Thursday and I get my op on Friday!! I want to be free of this thing so that in the new year we can look forward, no more worry about 'is it going to come back' and all that.
I will never know, maybe a lumpectomy would be ok, but do I want to take the chance? or be in and out of hospital for goodness knows how long? No, I have songs to sing and places to go... life is too short!
After so much agonising I am so happy to be calm and be 'myself' again!
Wishing you all the best for your New Year op.
Thank you so much for your advice, after spending hours trying to read up on diagnosis and treatment you start to feel quite insecure. I will be spending more time on this forum and less on google. xx
Hi, Mrs G! snap!
My BCN arranged a quick meet with the surgeon today ... I finally got what I wanted, he said 'if you were my wife or daughter I would want you to have a mastectomy' really, that was what I wanted to hear, its all very well saying to us, 'you choose' but my head has been bouncing between the decisions and I felt I was going nuts!! I know it may sound daft to be pleased to be having a mastectomy, but I am now calm in my mind.
Yes they offered options, but I do not want to be going back for more surgery and I do not want to be getting an implant replaced when I am 80! He did say that one area would be easy to find but the other one would be 'challenging' and that he was not sure if something was 'going on' between the two areas of calcification. He also said he was not sure what the cosmetic appearance would be like. So I am thinking, and knowing, that a mastectomy will give me peace of mind and no further operations.
Good luck to you on Friday.
Hi and welcome to the forum, I think Stereo is referring to a wire they insert in to the area to be removed, Im sure they call it a stereo wire. I had one Inserted and it's done via ultrasound with local anaesthetic so it wasn't painful, it does hang out of you like an Ariel which would explain the term stereo!
This stage is very stressful and your nerves will be shredded but it becomes easier the more you find out about your treatment plan, its best to just deal with the facts and not to speculate about the things you don't know yet, it only adds to your anxiety and isn't helpful.
There will always be someone around to listen and help answer any questions for you Xx Jo
Hi I'm new here and am due to have WLE with targeting clip on the 12th December, I have been diiagnosed with pleomorphic LCIS which from what i have read up on is treated the same as DCIS. I am due to see consultant on 6th December and my nerves are shattered already.
Silly question but does anyone know what stereo WLE mean does it mean two incisions ?
This forum is amazing, it's uplifting reading other peoples experiences and everyone is so helpful. xx
Good luck with the op on the 7th! Please let me know how it goes, and if you've any retrospective advice about what to take to hospital - and things to prepare for post-op :-)
Hi Essex Girly, I can understand your dilemma as I also agonised over my decision about whether to have 2 WLEs for one definite High Grade DCIS and the removal of a further suspicious area (like you, there was a third area which was biopsied, but mine showed up to be benign so wasn't removed) or a mastectomy. I hated having to make the decision, as I wanted the 'experts' to advise.
I - eventually! - made the choice to have the 2 WLEs followed by sessions of radiotherapy to kill off any remaining areas as this seemed to work when I had my first bout of breast cancer in the opposite breast 3 years previously. I also had 2 nodes removed. The weekend before the op, I made up my mind that I was going to phone up the BCN and tell her that I'd changed my mind and would just go for the mastectomy after all. I didn't, though, because I worried about having a bigger op with possible drains to cope with afterwards, as well as an overnight hospital stay instead of being a day surgery case.
That operation was in October, and I've now decided to have the mastectomy after all - hence the New Year's Eve op date. I made the decision because of conversations with the BCN when I received my pathology report which said that there was a very small residual bit of DCIS remaining in the anterior margin. It didn't seem to worry the surgeon, but he did offer to go back in and remove it in a simple 15 min. op. I also worried about the 3rd area showing up as benign which wasn't removed - 'what if it wasn't really benign?' kept going around my head.
Anyway, my BCN said that it was important for me to 'move on' and maybe the only way for me to do that was to have a mastectomy. Again, the decision was mine. This time, though, I instinctively knew that I was now ready to do that. I'm mentally prepared for the op now (well - not the op, but the loss of a breast!). The BCN really hit the nail on the head with the 'moving on' bit. Apparently there's no survival difference to each op decision, but if I'm going to always be wondering instead of just puting this behind me (again) and getting on with life then a mastectomy it needs to be. And now I won't need radiotherapy either.
I had the choice of lumpectomy and follow-up radiation or mastectomy with my first (invasive) cancer 3 years ago, and after agonising over the decision, decided on the lumpectomy. I put it all behind me after the op and just got on with life. That breast is fine now and this other one probably would be as well ... but decision has been made :-)
Hi Essex Girlie,I’m having my injection Thursday and my mastectomy Friday too. Not sure if it helps but I have two lumps both 6-8mm one is invasive lobular and the other invasive tubular they are 4mm apart. I was given no choice but to have a mastectomy. I tried really hard to have lumpectomies but for my surgeon it was not negotiable, I also cannot have nipple sparing surgery but am having reconstruction with implant done at the same time.
I’m sure you wouldn’t have been offered the option to not have a mastectomy if they weren’t confident this course of treatment would be ok for you.
I’ve been so strong throughout my diagnosis, carried on with life as normal but today it’s hit me like a freight train. I’ve been so busy getting the house ready and doing all the Xmas prep I’ve not seriously thought about it until today. Guess I knew it would hit me eventually. We’ve got this girl, it’s **bleep** but **bleep** happens and we can look forward to being waited on through Xmas. Take care xx Melanie
Hi, I am due to have two WLE's to one breast, on Friday 7th, I had my pre-op assessment today and am not coping at all well, my anxiety levels are through the roof.
I have two areas of High grade DCIS, I am to have the wires inserted with the aid of mammogram as the markers are very difficult to see. On Thursday I am going in for the dye injection as I am having sentinel node and one other removed. If I am going to change my mind I need to do it now?!!
I am very frightened, since my surgeon said that he thinks 'something else might be going on between the two areas' - which are 6 cms apart.
I chose WLEs because I wanted to try to save my breast but now I am wondering if I made the right decision, I have agonised over this for a month now! I just don't want to have a mastectomy to be told afterwards that there was nothing more than the two small areas of calcifications they saw on the mammogram, but then again I don't want to have to have another operation in the New Year because they could not get good margins and/or the nodes are nasty.... I also wonder which operation would be the easiest to recover from? In a way I would love someone to say 'you MUST do this ... or that..' My mental state is really not good right now, I am not sleeping, there are just so many unanswerable questions going round and round in my head.
I got my date this week for my right breast mastectomy (going flat, so no reconstruction). It's on the 31st December, so will be bringing in the (Scottish) new year a little differently in 2019!
I had a lumpectomy on the left breast 3 years ago (nipple couldn't be spared) and on a routine follow-up mammogram in May of this year, an area of high grade DCIS was found. To cut a long story short, after lots and lots of needle guided biopsies and MRI procedures, I had 2 WLEs and SNB in mid Oct. The pathology report showed up more areas of high grade and an area of DCIS still remaining in the anterior margin of one. Hence the decision to have the mastectomy.
If I had my way I'd have had a double mastectomy, but this wasn't considered necessary by the hospital team. I'll keep chasing it up once I've had this latest op.
I think I'm organised with everything I need post op - thanks to the great advice I've had from the ladies on here :-)
You seem to have prepared yourself well for your procedure. Like you, I'm very thankful for the help and advice I've received from others who've actually experienced this.
I thought I'd start a thread for those of us having surgery in December 2018.
I was diagnosed back on 2d May with bilateral breast cancer and have just finished neoadjuvant chemotherapy (right breast is HER2+, but no lymph nodes are involved, per sentinel lymph node biopsy done back in June before I started chemo).
I had my post-chemo MRI yesterday, 29 Nov, and my team will review the response to the HER2 antibodies on Monday, with the goal to confirm & consent to the surgery plan on Wed, 5 Dec, with surgery on Thu, 13 Dec -- assuming my immune systerm has recovered adequately from chemo and my (new) surgeon can slot me into her schedule. (By chance, I was initially assigned to a surgeon at my hospital who doesn't do oncoplastic procedures, and just got transferred to a colleague.)
The tentative plan is a nipple-sparing lumpectomy on the left for a 14mm mucinous invasive ductal cancer lesion (ER+ 8/8, PR+ 4/8, HER2-) and a nipple-sparing mastectomy on the right for IDC-no special type and extensive DCIS measured at about 63mm on MRI (IDC is ER+ 8/8, PR+ 6/8, HER2+), with immediate reconstruction using a prepectoral implant, meaning the implant will be place over rather than under the chest muscle.
I'm a small cup, and also a keen walker and freelance/self-employed, and I'm thinking this reconstruction option would afford less time off recovering and less time off work, plus it will also leave my tissue donor sites intact should I need to have future mastectomy of the left breast and/or if the reconstruction of the right breast doesn't take. During the surgery, they'll take some tissue from the right nipple, and if it tests positive for cancer, the nipple will be removed in a subsequent procedure; same story for the left breast if they don't get clear margins. This is still all to be confirmed -- until a couple days ago, I thought I may only be able to have delayed reconstruction, and it wasn't clear if either nipple might be spared in the first round of surgery. The plan may very well change -- and at this point, I've wrapped my head around that. (Counselling has helped.)
Anyone else scheduled for surgery in the next weeks? Fabulous timing, isn't it?
I suspect for many of you, surgery will be the first step in your treatment journey. I feel like an old hand at this point -- since I got my referral to the breast clinic back in early April 2018, eight months ago, I've been reading up. More important, I've been given the gift of amazing help, guidance, and support from dozens of people on various Breast Cancer Care forums. We can and will do this, together.