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 post-surgery tips
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Jazz

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Re:post-surgery tips - Monday, May 30, 2011 12:58 PM
Lucky are the ones that get to stay overnight or longer. Mine is a day surgery...you wake up and you are out and mine is double mastectomy. I live alone so have no clue what to expect or do.
scootersmom

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Re:post-surgery tips - Monday, May 30, 2011 3:11 PM
Here are a couple of things that I picked up from this website:
 
1)  Take a candy dish to the hospital with you for your overnight stay.  Keep it stocked.  Make sure the dish is small.  This will keep the nurses coming in and then you don't have to wait for your meds.  When I had my surgery, my sister decided to hook me up with the candy.  She brought a large vase filled with all types of candy.  Six pounds to be exact.  This approach backfired and everyone who worked the floor was in there constantly and it did not allow any time to rest.
 
2) Take your favorite slippers.
 
3) I was in the hospital for two days.  I had a double mastectomy with expanders.  I wore the hosptial gowns the whole time.
 
4)  Do not allow any family member to bring in the game "operation".  My family brought it into preop and told my general surgeon that he had to prove that he could master the game before he could operate on me.  He didn't know what to think.
 
5)  Follow the doctor's orders.  Do not try to "brave it out" buy not taking the pain meds.
 
6) If you have overly affectionate pets, you might want to keep them in another room. 
 
7) Make sure that you have someone who can take you to your followup visits.  After the first week of surgery I had four doctor appointments all in the same week.  Primary, general surgeon, plastic surgeon and oncologist.
 
8)  Anytime you have more than one doctor involved, make sure they know about the other(s).  They need to coordinate as well otherwise you will be the messenger service.
 
These are just some of the things that I recall.  It has been almost five weeks since my surgery.  I have not begun the fill up of the expanders yet as I am dealing still with an infection that developed less than two weeks after surgery.
Tina    
dx 2/1/11 DCIS
Lumpectomy 2/27 results DCIS/LCIS Stage 0 ER+ PR+
Bi-lateral Mastectomy 4/26 with expanders 
6/3 Surgery to remove contaminated expander due to infection.
7/22/11 Surgery to reinsert the expander. 
10/11/2011 Surgery to replace tissue expanders with implants.
 
 



sunshyne377

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Re:post-surgery tips - Friday, June 03, 2011 1:03 PM
Great post ladies! my surgery is June 20th. Bilateral mastectomy with left lymph nodes. This was really helpful info!

I especially like the post about the candy dish! ;-)
Diagnosed with Invasive Ductal Carcinoma on 5/4/2011. In both breasts and 3 left lymph nodes and 2 right.

Estrogen positive, progesterone positive, her2 negative.

stage 2b bilateral disease.

Bialateral Mastectomy 6/20/11;
4 rounds of AC, 4 rounds of T - chemo
radiation 28 rounds (to comelete 1/12/12 
Tamoxifen started 11/11
SKalsta

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Re:post-surgery tips - Sunday, September 11, 2011 6:04 AM
Hi, I had a bilateral Mast July 28, 2011.  First, the surgeon told me to be prepared to go home that day but plan for an overnight visit.  Yeah - insurance companies are driving the fact that this type of surgery should be same day.  I ended up staying overnight. 
 
All the things mentioned here were good:
        button up pj's
        slippers from home
        ipod
        kindle for reading
        own pillow
        
 
Once at home, I blocked myself in when sleeping.  I normally do not sleep on my back so I was elevated, but had pillows on both sides of me.  This prevented me from rolling over.  And also had a pillow on top of me.  I have a little dog that loves to give me kisses.  If she jumped up to try to give me a kiss, the pillow helped cushion the impact. 
 
I was able to shower a few days post surgery - and the best thing was to have my husband shower with me.  That was great.  I was told no baths at all.  I agree with some of the postings, dirty hair is the worse thing.
 
I had someone stay home with me for 5 days - so mainly everything was done for me.  Meals, dog care, etc.
 
The after taste of the anesthesia was horrible.  Very metal tin taste (I hear chemo has that same taste).  So mouthwash, mints, etc were a  must.  I would suck on one every half hour or so.
 
I had 4 drains.  And the first one came out after a week, but the last one took a month.  I needed to have 30cc or less for 2 consective days.  Neosporin worked great on the drain incisions.  They would itch, and the stiches would poke me.  And also while talking drains.  I had to go back to get a drain milked because it was clogged.  They tell you how to milk them, but they don't really tell you to pull them like a rubber band, stretch them as much as you can.  The better you milk them, the better off you are.  My husband and I thought we were doing it right, but we were not pulling and stretching them enough.
 
Take the pain meds and also the stool softener.  I did not have any fore warning about that.
 
A little extra protein is not a bad thing either. 
 
Set up a website on Caringbridge.org.  It is free and becomes a great source of strength from  your supporters. 
 
Accept any help and assistance people offer.  It is nice before hand to ask each of your friends/supporters what their favorite thing to do is and least favorite thing concerning household chores.  Then keep a list.  When you need extra shopping done, ask the friend/supporter that enjoys shopping.  Laundry etc.  Most want to help and offer but don't want to step in.  And we have issues asking for help.  So, it is nice for both.  You don't mind asking someone that enjoys that task, and they feel needed and glad they can help.  This is the biggest piece of advice I can give.
 
 
Sue K
Invasive Ductal Carcinona
Diagnosed 7/1/2011
Stage III Grade 2
Tumor Size 6cm
2+/18 nodes
ER+/PR+
HER2 Negative
7/28/2011 - Right Modified Mastectomy w/ lymph nodes removed.  Left Prophylactic Mastectomy
Not a candidate for reconstructive surgery. 
Chemo 5 out 8 completed.
Radiation completed.
Lymphedema and scar tissue issues
cdicapua

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Re:post-surgery tips/I am really slow - Thursday, November 17, 2011 7:21 AM
 
It is almost 1 month since my surgery
These are the things important to me now
T shirts to protect you after you can lift your arms to put them on.
If you are having recon with skin expanders take off the camisole, don't wear anything but cotton hanes t shirts excuse the expression (wife beaters) the tee 's with no sleeve, under your blouse
drink as much fluid as possible it helps with dehydration from pain killers
eat yogurt so you don't get infection from anti  biotics
it is ok to be tired, sleep when you need it
Be careful to eat something with all meds, meds can kill your stomache
 
Cathy DiCapua
mammogram 8/19
dx 9/4
DCIS
Mucinous carcenoma stage 1 a, bilateral mas/w recon 10/19 , Letrozole for 5 yrs
happynewyorker

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Re:post-surgery tips - Monday, January 19, 2015 8:47 AM
Thank you Cindy for the information about what to have available. This information will help me when I have my surgery in February 2015. Best regards, Lee
Tricia Keegan

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Re:post-surgery tips - Monday, January 19, 2015 11:54 AM
Good luck with your surgery Lee and hope all goes well for you!
Tricia Keegan...From Ireland Dx July '05 IDC 3/9 nodes pos..triple positive..a/c x 4..Taxol/herceptin x 12
Herceptin 1yr ..rads x35 oophorectomy Aug '06
Currently taking Arimidex /Zometa 1 x yearly
Carepage- survivortricia
Sadie Rose

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Re:post-surgery tips - Tuesday, May 12, 2015 11:35 PM
Hello Everyone,
I have a question.  I had my bilateral mastectomy 4 weeks ago.  Last week I developed a rash mainly between my breasts.  I saw my plastic surgeon on Monday.  She seemed concerned.  She put me on antibiotics and a hydrocortisone cream.  The rash isn't getting better yet.  She said if the rash doesn't go away I will have to have surgery to remove the expanders.  Has anyone had an infection that cleared without removing the expanders.  I feel like this will be quite a set back time wise.  I am supposed to go back to work on Monday.
Tricia Keegan

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Re:post-surgery tips - Wednesday, May 13, 2015 1:37 AM
I'm sorry I can't help with your question Sadie, maybe try asking on the Pink sister page on FB?
Tricia Keegan...From Ireland Dx July '05 IDC 3/9 nodes pos..triple positive..a/c x 4..Taxol/herceptin x 12
Herceptin 1yr ..rads x35 oophorectomy Aug '06
Currently taking Arimidex /Zometa 1 x yearly
Carepage- survivortricia
Sadie Rose

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Re:post-surgery tips - Thursday, May 14, 2015 8:40 PM
Thank you Tricia.  I will try that.
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