Tummy Tightness after DIEP flap Breast Reconstruction

Tummy Tightness after DIEP flap Breast Reconstruction I speak to many women who ask about tummy tightness after DIEP flap breast reconstruction.  The emphasis of the question focuses on how long the tightness will last and how it is adjusting to the new feeling. When DIEP flap breast reconstruction is performed women also have the advantage of getting something that mimics a tummy tuck, also known as abdominoplasty.  The technical aspects of that surgery are well explained here at the Microsurgeon.org website.  Here is a quote from the page: The tissue used for DIEP breast reconstruction contains skin, fat, and blood vessels. It is the same tissue area that is discarded in the classical cosmetic surgical abdominoplasty – also known as the tummy tuck. Your Newly Altered Tummy I want to make an analogy about tummy tightness after DIEP flap breast reconstruction.  When you buy a new pair of jeans Continue Reading →

DIEPflap Breast Reconstruction: Aesthetic Questions to Ask Your Plastic Surgeon

DIEPflap Breast Reconstruction: Aesthetic Questions to Ask Your Plastic Surgeon DIEPflap breast reconstruction & aesthetic questions to ask your plastic surgeon involves more than  you may or may not have given much thought to.  You have had a mastectomy due to breast cancer. You have tested positive for the BRCA gene and are facing the decision to have a prophylactic bilateral mastectomy to significantly decrease your chances of getting breast cancer. Perhaps you are even going in for a consult to repair damage done at another practice and are looking for better results.  Now you’re researching and thinking about breast reconstruction options. You found a board certified plastic surgeon with great skill and a high rate of success. The consult appointment has been set up. You write down as many questions as you can and hope beyond hope that you will be given the time to have all of them Continue Reading →

Bilateral Prophylactic Mastectomy

  Bilateral Prophylactic Mastectomy ~ Is it Right for You? When I read an article about BPM posted on Facebook by my reconstruction surgeon I knew immediately what the letters stood for and so do those in the BRCA and cancer community. Out of pure curiosity I searched on the internet the “meaning of BPM” without adding “medical” to the search. You get some interesting as well as hilarious results: British Prime Minister, Beam Position Monitor, Business Performance Management, Blood Pressure Monitor, Beats per Minute and my favorite, Butt Pumping Music! The Angelina Effect Bilateral prophylactic mastectomy became a popular news topic after Angelina Jolie shared that she reduced her risk by nearly 90% of ever getting breast cancer because of choosing a BPM. She tested positive for the BRCA1 gene mutation and her mother died of ovarian cancer. I wrote a previous blog on this and completely understand why Continue Reading →

Surgical Drains

A Bit of Self-deprecating Humor Never Hurts Surgical Drains – A Necessary Evil I hope you get a Friday laugh out of this post!  Surgical drains are a necessary evil for many surgeries and they certainly are for DIEP flap reconstruction.  Drains are an important part of your healing but no patient I speak to likes them.  But, hey, they are temporary.  I even had one of my abdominal drains become infected the week I was out of the hospital after phase 1.  But, it was taken care of within 12 hours when my doc upped my intake of anti-biotic.  Things happens when you’re healing and the infection was short-lived, just as the drains are short-lived. You can read why they are so important to your healing at the PRMA website. This #FundayFriday,  #FlashbackFriday post is to hopefully evoke a giggle, smile or laugh.  Just remember to grab a pillow and Continue Reading →

How Has Breast Cancer Changed You?

How Has Breast Cancer Changed You? Cancer: Connections & Catalyst Many articles and questions are posed:   “How has breast cancer changed you?” Here is one example  from the About Health website, just one from a myriad of articles published after doing a quick search on the topic. I think it’s fair to ask that question to anyone in any phase of life. How has the news of the day changed you? How has having children changed you? How has visiting a foreign country changed you? How has being married changed you? How has being divorced changed you? How has changing your hair color changed you? How has losing weight changed you? How has becoming a vegan changed you? Blah, blah, blah and on and on…… Individuals and Change Individuals are affected by events in life in either very positive ways or extremely negative ways.  So OK!! We’re all individuals Continue Reading →