MAJOR STIFFNESS/SWELLING UNDER ARMS AFTER MASTECTOMY/RECONSTRUCTION

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Stella49
New Member


Date Joined Jun 2011
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 6/2/2011 5:46 PM (GMT -6)   
Hello all
 
I am at the end of my wits and very depressed.  I hope someone here can help me.  I had invasive ductal carcinoma in my left breast.   I am 49 years old.  I opted for a double mastectomy with 13 lymph nodes removed (left side) 2 months ago and had tissue expanders put in.    A month later (I wanted them out!) I had silicon implants (lowest size possible) 10 days ago.   I have had major swelling and stiffness under both armpits since mastectomy.  I feel like there are 2 tennis balls under my arms. I asked my breast surgeon about it and he told me it's normal, no fluid accumulation (just tissue) and it will take time to go down.  This is very aggravating.  I can't sleep because I have to sleep on my back (not a back sleeper).  It is so stiff and u can actually see it through shirts.  I have been doing excercises with no results.  I just want to take a knife an cut myself open to relieve the pressure (no worries, I won't do that).  At this point I want to call my plastic surgeon and tell him to take everything out and be flat chested, I really don't care anymore.  Also, I feel like I have two big stones sittiing on my chest.  Everything in so non-plyable.  I don't want to keep taking meds as they r not working anymore and I don't want to get addicted. 
 
PLEASE DOES ANYONE HAVE ANY INSIGHT OR SUGGESTIONS BEFORE I IMPLODE!  SERIOUSLY I JUST WANT TO CRY ALL THE TIME.
 
thanks in advance
 
Stella49

barkyboys
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2003
Total Posts : 1564
   Posted 6/2/2011 7:29 PM (GMT -6)   
Personally, I would seek out a good physical therapist before I took a knife to myself. Look for someone who is familiar with myofacial release. I would also consider seeking a second opinion from another plastic surgeon. It sounds like you could be having some serious issues with adhesions.

I'm so sorry you're having so much pain! Really, you need help, and if your doctor is not helping you, you need to find someone who will.

Hugs...BEV

Stella49
New Member


Date Joined Jun 2011
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 6/2/2011 8:50 PM (GMT -6)   
Thank you so much for responding Bev.   I will google Myofacial release. What do you been by adhesions?  Are u talking about perhaps scar tissue under the area that was cut?  ty again.

barkyboys
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2003
Total Posts : 1564
   Posted 6/3/2011 8:12 PM (GMT -6)   
An adhesion is a band of scar tissue that binds two tissues together that should be separate. They can be very thick and fiberous, and they can be very painful. By the way, they are pretty common with implants, where adhesions form between your tissue and the implant. Some people are more prone to adhesions than others, I think. Sometimes myofacial release can help with adhesions.

Hope this helps. Keep away from those steak knives, Stella!

Hugs...
BEV

Alcie
Veteran Member


Date Joined Oct 2009
Total Posts : 3372
   Posted 6/6/2011 3:26 PM (GMT -6)   
I have axillary web syndrome (aka axillary cording) even after 2 1/2 years. I just finally found a therapist who deals with it. My last oncologist said to me, "What's that?" So I'm switching again.

For me it started after radiation. My lymphatic system on the bad side was cooked - bottom of ribs to elbow.

There are lots of exercises on the web. I've been doing them, and they do help. They just weren't enough. I'm hoping the vigorous squashing and manual stretching by the therapist will break them up.

It works for some people.
Alcie
 
 

in pain 2012
New Member


Date Joined Jul 2012
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 7/16/2012 6:13 PM (GMT -6)   
This reply is for stella49.  I know your post is from last year...I wanted to know how you're doing now?...I have the same problem (minus the tissue expanders)....I had a double mastectomy almost 3 weeks ago and my skin is sooooooooo tight with edema I'm losing my mind.  I plan to get tussue expanders in a few months.  Any reply would be helpful if someone has experienced this. confused

barkyboys
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2003
Total Posts : 1564
   Posted 7/17/2012 5:15 PM (GMT -6)   
What does your doctor say about the edema? Sometimes they will suggest a compression garment to minimize the collection of fluids. But you really need to check with your doctor and follow his/her advice.

Gentle hugs...
BEV
Bev
Breast Cancer forum moderator

in pain 2012
New Member


Date Joined Jul 2012
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 7/18/2012 3:08 PM (GMT -6)   
I just got back from my Doctor's appt and she said it is back fat that has now repositioned,not edema....I could not believe my ears....I wear a size 4 or 6 and I'm 5 foot 7 inches tall...I never had back fat..she had no advice.. More confused now, then ever.
Thanks for replying.

rosebudforever
New Member


Date Joined Aug 2012
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 8/23/2012 10:58 AM (GMT -6)   
In 6 days I must have a mastectomy on my right breast. I have had 4 lumpectomy's the invasive cancer is gone but DCIS positive margin are still present. I will have reconstruction and was wondering has evenyone had a good experience with this procedure?
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