Congratulations on surviving your battle against cancer or any other health condition that led to mastectomy. Losing one or both of your breasts to the disease can be devastating, but all is not lost. The cosmetic and healthcare industries have been making remarkable strides in advancing cosmetic treatments. After a mastectomy or lumpectomy, your surgeon might recommend breast reconstruction surgery that aims at rebuilding your breasts' appearance and structure. If you consider this option, you need to learn a few things about the surgical procedure and recovery.
1. Caring for the Drains
After surgery, it's common for the surgeon to insert a thin tube through an incision site located on the side of your breast. The tube drains out excess fluid from the surgical area to prevent swelling and inflammation. It also allows the wound to heal quickly.
Your surgeon might instruct you on emptying the drain and ensuring it stays in place for a few days. The incision site where the tube digs into your body may leak some fluid, but this is not a significant problem.
2. Pain Management
A breast reconstruction surgery is an invasive procedure, which means your surgeon will administer anesthesia. After surgery, the pain-numbing medication begins to fade. As a result, you might feel some pain, swelling, nausea, and fatigue for a short time.
Your surgeon will prescribe some pain medication to relieve the discomfort. Other side effects such as nausea and fatigue subside as the days go by. You need to stick to the instructions given to avoid developing dependency problems. You may experience instances of constipation after the procedure. Staying hydrated, taking laxatives, and drinking juices may offer relief.
3. Caring for the Wound and New Breasts
Modern medicine pioneered dissolvable sutures. However, your surgeon may request you to head back to the hospital to remove a few sutures. You may be taught how to dress and disinfect your wounds to avoid infections and allow quick healing. You should avoid applying any makeup or foreign materials around the incision sites until the wound heals completely.
Your doctor will provide you with a surgical bra that supports the new breasts and helps them assume the desired shape.
4. Physical Activities
Following breast reconstruction surgery, it's recommended that you avoid engaging in any physical activity for the first few days. Take the time to rest to promote healing. You can walk around, but anything further is highly discouraged to avoid tearing the sutures. Once the wounds heal, you can slowly incorporate physical activities such as house chores and gradually exercise.
Part of the preparation for breast reconstruction surgery is learning what to expect during and after the procedure. With these tips, you certainly know what to expect when the time comes. Therefore, reach out to a specialist to discuss your needs and schedule breast reconstruction surgery.Share