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Valued Contributor
Posts: 594
Registered: ‎03-10-2010

Question regarding previous radiation on breast....

Okay so tomorrow I go and hear the results of my latest biopsy, I already had breast cancer 5 years ago along with chemo, surgery and radiation. So I chose a lumpectomy at the time because the doctor convinced me to go with the least invasive procedure. So now if I find out I have cancer again, how will I have a mastectomy this time without my skin not cooperating. From what I understand the skin isn't going to do well with healing back together once you have had radiation. So what will I do? Have you had to make this decision and what happened with your skin? Did you go through radiation once then turn around and need additional surgery, was your skin fine in the end?

Thanks for sharing your tale...I have to leave but will check back overnight sometime. 

Respected Contributor
Posts: 3,180
Registered: ‎01-20-2011

Re: Question regarding previous radiation on breast....

I'm sorry I don't know any of the answers. I just wanted to say I hope that things go well for you tomorrow.I also hope it's ok to say a prayer for you?  

Honored Contributor
Posts: 14,288
Registered: ‎03-13-2010

Re: Question regarding previous radiation on breast....

@gulf coast girl

 

I am sorry that I have no answers to provide either.  But I wanted to tell you that I am thinking good thoughts for you and wish you all the best!!!!  Please let us know how things go, and hopefully others here can lend their expertise and experience.  

"A day without sunshine is like, you know, night." - Steve Martin
Occasional Contributor
Posts: 17
Registered: ‎03-18-2010

Re: Question regarding previous radiation on breast....

[ Edited ]

I had a lumpectomy followed by 7 weeks of radiation, 5 times per week. The next year I had breast cancer in the other breast.  I told the surgeon to remove them both.  When in discussions with the plastic surgeon regarding reconstruction, I was told I couldn't have

saline implants because of the radiation. (I have forgotten the reason why.)  I chose to 

have a diep flap reconstruction in which the outer skin of the breast is left and the inside is removed.  Then fat is taken from the stomach (or elsewhere in the body if there is not

enough fat to use from the stomach). It, along with the blood vessels, are put into the

breasts and the blood vessel in the fat is attached to a blood vessel in the chest.  You

can google the diep flap reconstruction because I've not explained it very well.  The surgery takes a long time. Mine lasted 12 hours, but the time period is shorter now.  Also, my reconstruction was not done at the time of the mastectomies.  When the mastectomies were done, expanders were placed inside

the breast outer surface.  Periodically, I went to the surgeon and had saline injected to gradually build up thethe expanders.  THis prevented the breast surface from collapsing to the chest wall.

Finally, after the expanders had been in place for a while, then the diep flap was done.  The radiation caused no problem at all for this type of reconstruction.  In fact, the breast that had radiation looked just the same as the other one.  The doctor could tell I'd had it, but I couldn't by looking at it.  Radiation has come a long way.

Honored Contributor
Posts: 8,952
Registered: ‎03-10-2010

Re: Question regarding previous radiation on breast....

VERY BRAVE WOMEN HERE. I salute all of you, pray for your restored health, and deeply thank you for posting.

A dear friend of mine finished her treatments last week after a year, and is doing well.

 

Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 6,402
Registered: ‎05-22-2014

Re: Question regarding previous radiation on breast....


@violann wrote:

VERY BRAVE WOMEN HERE. I salute all of you, pray for your restored health, and deeply thank you for posting.

A dear friend of mine finished her treatments last week after a year, and is doing well.

 


SO WELL SAID!

 

You women are heroic, and you are inspirations to all of us.  Sending you best wishes and hugs!

Honored Contributor
Posts: 12,106
Registered: ‎03-09-2010

Re: Question regarding previous radiation on breast....


@gulf coast girl wrote:

Okay so tomorrow I go and hear the results of my latest biopsy, I already had breast cancer 5 years ago along with chemo, surgery and radiation. So I chose a lumpectomy at the time because the doctor convinced me to go with the least invasive procedure. So now if I find out I have cancer again, how will I have a mastectomy this time without my skin not cooperating. From what I understand the skin isn't going to do well with healing back together once you have had radiation. So what will I do? Have you had to make this decision and what happened with your skin? Did you go through radiation once then turn around and need additional surgery, was your skin fine in the end?

Thanks for sharing your tale...I have to leave but will check back overnight sometime. 


Hi gc girl---I had breast cancer with all the trimmings that you decsribed except I chose to a mastectomy. And earlier this year I went to a class about reconstruction from a local plastic surgeon who said that generally, implants aren't done on a person who had the rads as the skin is kind of damaged from it as far as elasticity and texture. But as far as healing, I don't think that rads have much to do with that type of healing.I have a little pocket in my cancer side that my surgeon left in case I wanted a new boob. I have yet to decide on recon as it will take almost a year from start to finish and I'm done with that kind of thing for now. Also I was told 3 years ago, that having  mastectomy vs. lumpectomy doen't mean you will never have a recurrence. I chose the mast. just because I wanted the stupid thing off and could have had the "good" one removed too, which I didn't, but I wish I did. Being one-boobed is a pain. I don't have any cancer zombies as per my last onc dr /labs and mammos.  Are you seeing the same drs? You sound like you aren't very happy with them.

 

Anyway, I wish the best for you and you should visit the cancer survivors board. Lots of really good people there.

 

PAM

 

 

Respected Contributor
Posts: 2,098
Registered: ‎03-15-2010

Re: Question regarding previous radiation on breast....


@gulf coast girl wrote:

Okay so tomorrow I go and hear the results of my latest biopsy, I already had breast cancer 5 years ago along with chemo, surgery and radiation. So I chose a lumpectomy at the time because the doctor convinced me to go with the least invasive procedure. So now if I find out I have cancer again, how will I have a mastectomy this time without my skin not cooperating. From what I understand the skin isn't going to do well with healing back together once you have had radiation. So what will I do? Have you had to make this decision and what happened with your skin? Did you go through radiation once then turn around and need additional surgery, was your skin fine in the end?

Thanks for sharing your tale...I have to leave but will check back overnight sometime. 


 

@gulf coast girl - I am hoping your results come back good.  It is so nerve racking and I'll keep you in my thoughts.

 

I might suggest if you haven't already check out the thread on cancer survivors.  Several women have breast cancer and they are the most helpful and friendly group I have "met".  They help each other out with solutions and they may be able to answer your questions.

 

Good luck.

Valued Contributor
Posts: 594
Registered: ‎03-10-2010

Re: Question regarding previous radiation on breast....

I didn't get good news. I have cancer again, this time one of the ductal types, last time it was lobular. Just swell. Onward to the oncologist next week. Thanks for taking the time to talk to me ladies.  Looks like I'll be having a double mastectomy. uuuggghhhh I hope my skin does well. 

Respected Contributor
Posts: 2,098
Registered: ‎03-15-2010

Re: Question regarding previous radiation on breast....


@gulf coast girl wrote:

I didn't get good news. I have cancer again, this time one of the ductal types, last time it was lobular. Just swell. Onward to the oncologist next week. Thanks for taking the time to talk to me ladies.  Looks like I'll be having a double mastectomy. uuuggghhhh I hope my skin does well. 


Oh no, I'm so sorry for the bad news. I say a prayer everyday for the ladies with healthcare issues and I will add you to my prayer list. Take care.