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Pre cancerous cells (DCIS)

MelbbarbiegirlMelbbarbiegirl Member Posts: 10
edited February 2013 in General discussion
This is my first post but I'm really hoping that not only will will it be therapeutic for me but help other women too.

I was diagnosed with pre cancerous cells in my right breast in Nov last year. The cells were picked up in a routine check up with my breast surgeon. I have a very strong family history of breast cancer so as much as I didn't like the news it was almost expected at some point.

I had an operation to remove the cells late in November and it was discovered in the extra tissue that was taken that i had more pre cancerous cells. So the next week I went back in and had the remaining cells taken.

Since then I have had a few visits to my surgeon,my gp, done a lot of research and visited a psychologist and made the big decision to have a bi lateral mastectomy and reconstruction.

My family history is awful as I'd already mentioned. My grandmother(mums side), my mum(twice), and 2 aunties have all had breast cancer. If I chose not to take the mastectomy path I would have to have radiation now and have 6 monthly check ups. Radiation treatment can prevent future reconstructive surgery if I did get breast cancer and it can also interfere with future imaging. So all of this taken into account I have made the tough decision.

My main reason for writing this blog is that during my research I realised that there is very little info available for women who are having preventative mastectomies. So I'm hoping that I can help others in the same situation.

My main reason for choosing this path is to obtain peace of mind. The stress of the testing and waiting for results last year drove me crazy and this would have to be endured more frequently. I also understand my increased chances of more pre cancerous cells appearing and my increased chance of breast cancer.

I go into hospital on March 18 and as much as I'm sure i'll get quite anxious leading up to the op I'm in a really good head space right now. There's been some really tough days and I know there'll be more ahead but I'm running with the good ones right now

Comments

  • MelbbarbiegirlMelbbarbiegirl Member Posts: 10
    edited March 2015
    Thank you so much for your reply. It's made my night. So nice to hear from a real person whose experienced this.

    Luckily for me I've never wanted children so I haven't had to stress about the breast feeding issue.

    Just a question about what you said about exercise. I'm a gym junky and am quite anxious about how long I'll be out of action. In my head I'd like to be at least able to go walking when I'm out of hospital and do lower body stuff like lunges and squats. Do u think that's an unreasonable expectation?

    How long were you in hospital for? ( my surgeon says between 5-10 days) depending on drainage.

    Also how long did you take off work and what kind of work do you do? How long ago was your surgery? And more personally are you happy with your new breasts?

    If I'm asking too many questions, just tell me to slow down but I'm just really excited to speak to someone whose been there.

    Hope your weekend has been great

    Heather
  • wendybwendyb Member Posts: 26
    edited March 2015

    I was in hospital for 6 days (my ps told me to expect 7-10 days)  and I was encouraged to start walking and doing the stretches on about Day 3 (when I had the self administered pain drip removed and therefore was able to get out of bed).  I really struggled to walk to the end of the corridor (about 20 steps) with assistance before I felt out of breath and exhausted (note, take a fabric bag like your Coles/ Woolies ones with you to the hospital to carry your drains as it makes it heaps easier to walk around).  By the time I left the hospital I could walk around the corridors quite comfortably but still walking pretty slowly.  I think you might need to lower your expectations on what you might be able to do when you get out of hospital as I doubt that you will be able to do lunges and squats.  When I got out of hospital I walked every day.  In the beginning I could make it about 100m down the road and back again before I felt out of breath.  Every slight hill took it out of me.  I was generally quite a fit person before the surgery.  The length I could walk grew over time but that was the extent of my exercise initially.  

    I was directed by my ps to not use my arms for a month after the surgery.  That meant no pushing myself out of bed, using my arms to get out of a chair, picking up bags etc.  I could only do the stretching exercises I was given in hospital.  I was able to drive a car again after about 2 months.  My first attempt to drive the car I managed to back the car down the driveway but had no strength to turn the (power steering) wheel.  I started to do aqua aerobics at a local hospital for people recovering from breast surgery which I found really helpful and meant that I could do some kind of exercise besides walking. 

    I took 2 months off from work.  I started to work from home for a couple of hours each day before the 2 months but I had some issues with neck pain which meant that I struggled to sit on a train.  I think that this was due to me tensing up and therefore causing me a lot of pain.  Massages helped ease the pain. 

    I work in an office all day and am either in front of a computer or going to and from meetings. 

    I had my initial surgery in Dec 2011 and my implants put in in March 2012.  I was pretty much back to normal a week after my last surgery.  The only difference I notice now is mainly to do with my strength and flexibility.  I still don't feel like I have my full strength back but I know that this will take time as the muscles have shifted and require re-training.  I used to be able to do push ups but because of the nature of the chest muscles now I do a modified version of ladies push ups.   I can now put my hands straight up but you can still feel the muscles pulling.

    I love my new boobs both in looks and feel.  There are things that you get used to after a while but this is part of the new me.  As an example, I know when it is cold outside and I start to feel cold as my chest starts to spasm which was a very odd feeling to begin with.  They don't move like normal boobs so when you lie on your side or you push your arm up against them, they don't move.  I have no feeling in them so I have to be more conscious of them as i have "hit" them against things unintentionally.  My bs did a great job so I have a great looking cleavage (which I never had before) and no-one knows that they aren't real! 

    I hope this helps but if you need any more info, let me know!

    Wendy

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