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2 weeks post surgery
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kells77 posted:
Hey there, I am new to the board and had a question. I am 2 weeks post-op from a bilateral mastectomy with expanders. My question is, do they ever stop being painful and uncomfortable?? I feel like I have rocks on my chest and they are a constant source of pain right now. Seems to get a little better each day but I cant ever see them being comfortable! They were filled to 300 cc's at the original surgery and I go for another fill next week. Any info would be appreciated!
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bcdevil responded:
Kells,
I also had a bilateral mast on March 17th, but was only filled with 75cc at surgery!! Woke up pretty much flat and yes it's still uncomfortable! Feels like its poking my heart sometimes, but they said it's my chest muscle. I had my first fill yesterday, and that sort of created more pressure, but you must have alot more than me cuz 300cc is alot!!! They added 60cc yesterday and want to fill me 1x a week, if my skin cooperates. So sorry you are so uncomfortable. I understand and completely sympathize with you. I spoke with others and they pretty much said it's painful until you get the final implants in. I don't really know, but i found a great friend and will keep you posted on what she says. Try to rest but keep up with the arm exercises as best you can, cuz stretching the skin will alleviate some of the pain. Did they give you pain meds? If they didn't, then ask, cuz we don't deserve to suffer like this, we have been thru enough!! I will pray for your pain to subside for you my friend!!! I don't know what kind of cancer you had, but if you need chemo, i think your fill process will be slower than mine. Keep me posted sweetie, I will "fill you in" lol, with any info i get.
Hugs n strength,
Sandy
 
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kells77 replied to bcdevil's response:
Hi Sandy, I have already done my chemo and have officially been declared "cancer-free" as of last week when I got my pathology report!! This is the last step of this horrible journey and I couldnt be happier! I was diagnosed on my 33rd birthday last year with Stage 2b triple negative breast cancer. I did 4 treatments of AC followed by 12 weeks of taxol. After that I had a sentinel node biopsy and had 1 node removed that was negative. I was advised I could have a lumpectomy with rads but chose to go with the double skin sparing mastectomy to avoid the radiation part of it all. I figured for me it was the best choice because I am on the younger side and dont want to face this again. It wasnt the easiest choice, but it was right for me. At any rate, I figured that was the answer to my question lol I cant imagine them being comfy until they are OUT...I do have pain meds but try to limit the amount I take because of the effects on the bowels. I have Crohns disease on top of this so I have to be careful.. I will continue to do my exercises and hopefully for the both of us it will get better with time! nice to meet you : )
 
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kayjoedwards responded:
I had a bilat in 2009 with expanders put in. The discomfort will go away eventually. For the time that you're having the filling procedures, it's like you have a bra on that's 2 sizes too small but once it's over you should feel better. My doctor filled mine to just a little more than what the final implant was so that the muscle would be relaxed once the implant was in. I felt better after the implant surgery and it was only a month or 2 before I could sleep on my stomach again.
One thing I noticed during the process was that I needed to take time during the day to try to relax a bit. I worked at a computer and found that I was hunching and making myself tight. If you want to avoid the medications, try some easy breathing exercises or relaxation techniques. Your poor chest muscles are tight and sometimes breathing helps.
Just remember, it does get better!
kayjo
 
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bcdevil replied to kells77's response:
Hey Kells,
Congrats pink hero!!! We made it together!! I love hearing another success story!! Wow, maybe you are extra sore cuz they started you out big. I only got 75cc to start, i was ripped off lol!! Seriously, i got my first fill yesterday, 60cc, and it was sore last night, but much better today!! My expanders feel like they are digging into my heart, but they said its my chest muscle as i don't have alot of fat. I'm a young 49, and am very active and physically fit, so this sitting around is driving me nuts!! Make sure you exercise, and breathe deep when you relax, it helps to stretch the muscles. I'm so proud of you sweetie!!! I also could have done lumpectomy, but chose bi lateral mast, cuz i'm not coming back to play in 5 yrs. I'm too busy and it was the right choice for me. We can deal with the pain from expanders a whole lot better than CANCER!! We can pretend we are on a beach with a margarita lettin the cabana boys check out our "perky girls" lol!! Seriously, we need humor to get thru this!!! So nice to meet you and very proud of you!! You Rock!!!
Hugs n strength,
Sandy
 
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cindy12345678 responded:
Hi Kells, I too did chemo first then surg. I had Bi-lateral in Jan. I have had three fills and they are feeling better. I am thin, and yes to begin with the expanders felt like they were digging in. The doc. tells me the implants wil be more comfortable. Are you getting any physical therapy? That seems to be helping me. They give you streches to do. are you having any lymphodema issues? I haven't yet thank God. I lost some range of motion from the surgury.I hope the physical therapy helps with that. I hope you feel less sore soon.
Cindy
 
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IsabelleMadeline responded:
Hi! I had a double mastectomy in November, 2010, with expanders. The pain was incredible and felt like I had a metal plate in my chest. The pain does go away! I had surgery March 3, 2011 to replace the expanders with silicone implants. Wow! What a difference. The implants are so much more comfortable--soft and natural feeling. No pain just some uncomfortable aspects. Please consider physical therapy with a therapist who specializes in breast cancer. My therapist is terrific and gave me home exercises to help stretch the skin and alleviatee the pain. It also helped get my range of motion back in both arms.

IsabelleMadeline
 
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bcdevil replied to IsabelleMadeline's response:
Isabelle,
Thanks for encouraging news!! I also am uncomfortable with the expanders. How long after your last fill did you have 2 wait for final implant surgery? I had bi lat march 17th, but was only filled with 75cc during surgery, and had 60cc first fill. My expander is very painful at night. Feels like its poking my heart!!! Still better than cancer!!! Thanks for advice!!
Hugs,
Sandy
 
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mariamaria2011 replied to bcdevil's response:
Hi, I am new to this aas well. I had bilateral mast with expanders on 2-14-11 and then after my drains came out I got an infection and lost one of my expanders on 3-18-11. I am so afraid they won't be able to ever complete my surgeries but the plastic surgeon said they can place another expander in 6 months.

At my original surgery they were filled to 300cc's and was very uncomfortable for about 3 weeks and then it began to subside....and then I got the infection..
 
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0910faith replied to mariamaria2011's response:
Hi Mariamaria, Sandy,Kells & Kayjo,
You all are my heros. I mean that sincerely,
Your strength gives me strength (maybe) Wow,
this sounds so much like torture to me. Are the only
plastic surgeon's guys? How can you ever explain to
them how you feel and how would they possible
understand? It's nice to hear that it does get easier.
When it's my turn I'm going to remind each of you,
you said EASIER is coming LOL. No don't LOL, I
who love all of you don't want you to incure any
more pain than you have.
Hugs to all
faith
 
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kells77 replied to 0910faith's response:
Thanks ladies!! I havent been on in a few days because for some reason my Blackberry wont let me post comments. I have read your responses though and thank you for sharing your stories. Im feeling alot better this past week, have pretty much been off the pain meds except at night when Im trying to sleep. Had my first fill this past Wednesday and Im pleased to say that it didnt hurt a bit. They added 75 cc's both sides, so Im about a B cup already! That has made this alot easier. I also saw my oncologist yesterday for a followup and got permission to dye my hair (what little I have) so that will help too. I think once I start to look better on the outside I will feel alot better on the inside.. Hope you all are doing ok. -Kelly
 
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rachael67 replied to kells77's response:
What a wonderful report! When you can begin to see the light at the end of the tunnel, things seems alot lighter...including your spirits!

Blessings continued.
Rachael
Just when the caterpillar thought her world was over, she became a butterfly! Don't give up five minutes before the miracle!!
 
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bcdevil replied to kells77's response:
Kells,
Maybe thats why i feel like this is so long!! I was only filled with 75cc at surgery, have had 2 fills od 60cc. and i dont feel like i'm getting anywhere with this!! I'm lucky if this is an A cup, and mine still have like lumps in them! They are not even close to looking even or smoothe! Very dilapidated actually!! Hopefully, after a few more fills it will start to look better, cuz i'm getting very discouraged!! I'm happy you are doing so well!! Keep it up girl! I love to hear happy stories, they give me a renewed sense of hope!!!
Hugs to you sweetie!!
Sandy
 
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0910faith replied to bcdevil's response:
Sandy,
don't get discouraged. You will feel better after a couple
more fills. Remember you got rid of the cancer. It's gone,
And a work of ART, LOL is in the making.Sweet Lady,
you are the strongest and best and you will be again
the beautiful you. You keep buidling me up and I
love you for it. You hang in there. Your almost there.
You have done so well so far.
I send you lots and lots of Shamrocks, my friend
My heart and all of us are with you.
hugs
faith
 
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bcdevil replied to 0910faith's response:
Faith,
Today i have thought about you all day and it has actually helped me tremendously!! You are such a sweetie and with your attitude you WILL beat this!! We both will!! Today, i went back and read my original journal page, and it made me realize how far i have truly come!! I owe most of it to you and all the wonderful ladies on here!! I also thought about how bad the govt. has screwed me over and decided to do something about it!! I just thought, what if i didn't have a husband with insurance and a good income? What if I was a single Mom? To shut off a woman's income because of cancer should be illegal and unethical!! Nobody asks for this! I am blessed to have financial and emotional support, but what if i didn't? I'm going to pursue this, not for myself, but for all women!! It's a positive way of fighting back!! Take care my sweet girls!! Sending you a special email, Faith!!
Hugs and strength,
Sandy


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