Wow! only two years? It seems like forever ago.
So where do I stand now in this whole journey?
Truthfully?…I have no idea. After being discharged from my plastic surgeons care, I never went back to the hospital. No follow up appointment with the surgical oncology department, despite them telling me I should have half yearly check ups.
They never contacted me to make appointments so I never called them.
This being the third year though, I know I’m due to have an MRI in lieu of a mammogram. That, I might just make the appointment for.
As far as how I feel post mastectomy.
I have not regained any feeling in the skin around the implants, it’s still completely numb and often seems a little cooler than the rest of my skin, although the scars have now reduced to fine lines.
Talking of implants. After the surgery to put them in, you get the orders to do implant massage….a word of warning….don’t move them tooooo far to the sides and up and down.
I healed awesomely, with no scar tissue, but I feel that I’m left with larger than I’d prefer pockets so that when I bend over, pick something up and flex my pec muscles it seems like the implant gets stuck and I have to push it back down. Not too bothersome when I’m at home, but kind of annoying/embarassing in the middle of a crowded Walmart.
I imagine people thinking or saying…
“Oh look, there’s that woman who keeps checking her boobs”
Even more embarrassing, which was quite funny at first, is the dancing foobs…Any one sided flex of the pecs and the implant moves up. Party trick at first…majorly embarrassing now.
One thing, that I slacked on in the first year, was the walking my hand up the wall with my finger tips. I did it for a little while, but soon got bored of it and put it off till later, or just forgot completely … bad move on my part.
I ended up with a frozen shoulder and ended up needing a cortisone shot.
The shot itself wasn’t bad, and it helped immensely, but the pain from and leading up to the frozen shoulder was agony.
Another problem, although the area surrounding the implants is numb, just under the left ‘foob’ is a small area (about the size of a finger tip) that is extremely painful if anything touches it. Nerve damage we suspect. It has left me unable to wear a bra, and in turn, not moving my arms to the back of my body to hook a bra, t’s also left me unable to actually put my arms behind me and up my back.
This is something I’m still working on, getting full range of motion back.
For anyone about to have a mastectomy, one tad bit of advice I would give…once all your restrictions on reaching and lifting are gone. Move your arms every which way, or you’ll end up in pain and unable to move them, or at best, not having that full range of motion.
Well, that’s pretty much where I am now. I stood by my decision not to have further reconstruction, and besides the few minor annoyances, and bumps in the road, I can honestly say that if I was faced with a do over, I wouldn’t do anything different, I’d still have the double mastectomy, and still choose to have immediate reconstruction.