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    Breast radiation
    An_249129 posted:
    Is the swelling of the breat after the radiation normal? my breast almost doubled in size. How long does it take to be normal?
    judyfams responded:
    How long have you been finished with radiation?
    Is it swelling that is sore and tender or is it more of an increase in volume?
    It is normal for some women to notice an increase in volume of the irradiated breast and it can happen that there is fluid in the breast from the radiation. That fluid buildup is known as truncal lymphedema and can be treated.
    I would suggest that you call your radiation oncologist tomorrow. It does matter when you finished radiation and when you noticed these changes - so please discuss these changes with your radiation oncologist.
    Let us know what the doctor says.
    vandoula replied to judyfams's response:
    I am done with radiation since 10 days ago. My breast is sore and I still have shooting pain. I believe the fluid is what makes it sore. I'll call my Dr. and let you know what he said.

    Thank you for your reply.
    judyfams replied to vandoula's response:
    It does sound like fluid since you just finished radiation. That happened to me 2 weeks after I finished radiation.
    My Radiation oncologist massaged my breast and then told me how to do it myself. I did it twice a day for 3 weeks and it slowly disappeared.
    I do know there are specialists trained in that kind of massage too.
    Good luck and let us know how what the docrtor says.
    GGrandmaJan replied to judyfams's response:
    Judy, that is good info. I was never told to massage the breast to reduce the fluid. I did go to a lymphedema clinic several years later after having the lumpetomy. She taught me how to move the lymph around to the other side of my chest as I had 9 lymph nodes removed. I do believe it is worth it to at least go for a consult at your local lymphedema clinic. They tell you so much about the lymph system.

    Good luck Vandoula, and do let us know what your Dr says.
    He who laughs at himself--never runs out of things to laugh at!! by Me.
    jenna291 replied to GGrandmaJan's response:
    My breast was swollen for several months after the radiation.
    I had a lumpectomy with 14 lymph nodes removed, and was told it was completely normal. After about 4 months, it gradually reduced in size to be smaller than the other breast and the redness disappeared completely. I was told to massage the site where the surgery was so that it didn't knot up, and show on an mri as a false positive.
    Massage definitely helps the discomfort. I did feel random pain for a few years afterwards, even now once in a while I feel something at the site. I was told by my radiology oncologist this could happen forever, although it is hardly ever now (I am 5 years out).
    I would definitely mention any concerns to your docs.
    good luck and let us know!
    vandoula replied to judyfams's response:
    My Dr. said : It's a part of the healing process. Since I don't have fever I might use any pain killer for the pain. It's a matter of time as he asked me to contact him in one week to tell him about my status.

    I'll try the massage, I am sure it will help.

    Thanks to all the ladies who replied to my question.
    judyfams replied to vandoula's response:

    Lay down flat with your hand(that's on the side of the swollen breast) above your head. The massage is done very, very gently. Put aquaphor on the breast and using the whole palm of the hand gently go across the breast in horizontal lines from the armpit towards the sternum - in that one direction only. Kepp going very gently from the armpit towards the sternum until you have done the whole breast.
    Do that very gently twice a day for a few weeks. Do not press or use any pressure - just go gently in the one direction until you cover the entire breast like I said above.
    Let us know how you are doing.
    vandoula replied to judyfams's response:
    I've already started the massage. Thank you for the input.
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