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I am going in for a lumpectomy and sentinel node biopsy. Could anyone please tell me about the pain involved and the experience of the whole procedure?

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anonymous

Stage 2A Patient over 5 years
 
  • P C Profile
    anonymous
    Stage 0 Patient
    Hi, I had a lumpectomy and sentinel node biopsy on Sep 29, 2011. My surgery went great, wide clear margins and both nodes they removed were negative. About two weeks following that, I developed some seromas in my breast at the surgery site and at the area just below node removal. My surgeon drained the one below the node removal only one. He gave me pain medication to he me through that. About a month later, I had external pinpointed beam radiation for only 7 days, twice a day. It was not bad at all. I did have, and still do have what mu radiation oncologist calls zingers. They are very sharp pains, which have almost gone away. My seromas are completely gone. I have intermittent swelling on my right breast, which they say is normal. It also is less and less as time passes. Right now, I am taking Tamoxifen and Effexor. I am feeling so much better, but still not totally back to feeling as I did before my DCIS surgery, but I will get there. I had my 6 month mammogram and it was all good, only showed scar tissue from surgery and radiation. every so often, I have a bit of nausea, but I have found that if I drink ginger ale, it really helps. I have a prescription for Compazine, but have only had to use it twice. I had a little nausea and fainting incident a few months ago, but it all worked out. I fell pretty hard and had to have some metal stitches in my head, and a few days I the hospital to make sure it was nothing more Eros causing me to faint. All in all, it is goin good for me. My whole procedure was eventful, but not a bad thing. It is best to educate yourself on your contusion, mine was DCIS, stage 0 , clear margins, neg sentinel nodes, but positive estrogen and progesterone receptors. This is the reason for Tamoxifen. The Effexor was to counteract the hot flashes and it has really helped me feel better and speed up recovery. If you understand you care for your cancer plus a good support network, things, or me anyway, go muc smoother.
    over 5 years Comment Flag
  • Sharon Danielson Profile
    anonymous
    Survivor since 2007
    We are unique individuals and can have a range of reactions to any procedure. I was on the "good" end of everything. I did not seem to have much discomfort with anything. My perception of discomfort to the sentinel node mapping was no more than pinching. The tech told me I would feel that... which I did but it was nothing significant to me. I had 5 sentinal nodes removed. I had a mastectomy, I took no pain medication afterwards. I was up and around within 3 days. We all seem to have a fear or fears of what is about to happen. My big fear was the anesthesia. Since I was so afraid of it, I "interviewed" anesthesiologists and got recommendations. I think I was just SO HAPPY to wake up, the rest of the post-op stuff was nothing. We all have different pain tolerance. Mine, is obviously, on the high side. I would never say to a woman "Oh, it's nothing" because it isn't. There are a lot of mental images that go through every woman's mind. There may be some unexpected post-op problems that come up which you can't be prepared for. The other thought that went through my mind as I was approaching the surgery.... this was something I had to so to save my life. I developed a positive let's-get-going attitude and marched right into it. Sometimes bravery comes from acting that way. I became brave by --pretending-- to be brave. I wish you the very best and hope you have as easy a time as I did. I had a young woman surgeon who specialised in breast surgery. I had utmost confidence in her and my young woman anesthesiologist. I was not disappointed. Blessings to you in your journey. Take care, Sharon
    over 5 years Flag
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      anonymous
      Learning About Breast Cancer

      Amazing and response:)

      over 5 years Flag
    • R W Profile
      匿名
      了解乳腺癌

      The website writes for you some times!

      over 5 years Flag
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      anonymous
      Learning About Breast Cancer

      Amazingly written response!

      over 5 years Flag
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    anonymous
    Learning About Breast Cancer
    Hi. I had a lumpectomy and axillary node dissection on May 30. The lumpectomy was wire guided. I know my surgery is different than yours but I just wanted to give you confidence that everything will be all right. I was nervous before my surgery too especially the part that involved inserting the wire in my breast two hours before the surgery. The doctors are so concerned about making you confortable and relaxed. Please don't worry it will go smoothly. Take care jayme
    over 5 years Flag
    • Evelyn Heilbrunn Profile
      anonymous
      Survivor since 2012

      Jayme, as a new member of this site I'm so happy to see you already paying it forward! Your recent experience will be so valuable to those who are newly diagnosed.

      over 5 years Flag
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      anonymous
      Learning About Breast Cancer

      Evelyn, I'd love to help others as you all have helped me. I'm very grateful. You take care :-).

      over 5 years Flag
  • Evelyn Heilbrunn Profile
    anonymous
    Survivor since 2012
    All I can say is, it's not so bad. The wire thing can be uncomfortable but numbing cream helps. The dye injection was painless. Post-op the node biopsy will probably hurt worse than the lumpectomy but it's all manageable. You'll be up and around in a couple of days (my experience, anyway).
    over 5 years Comment Flag
  • Marianne R. Profile
    anonymous
    Survivor since 2011
    I did mine in outpatient surgery. The only pain meds were in thr recovery room. At home I used asprin and ice packs. I have a ptetty high pain theshold. Please remember this breast cancer journey is very indivdual. They have good meds please don't suffer. The drains are the biggest pain( as pain in the butt, they don't hurt)
    over 5 years Flag
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      anonymous
      Learning About Breast Cancer

      Heehee, I agree aboutthe drains ;-). Jaymee

      over 5 years Flag
  • Jk Joyce Profile
    anonymous
    Survivor since 2012
    I was terrified about getting the dye put in but my surgeon did it and it took about 5 seconds and was not bad at all. I had a lumpectomy and another surgery 3 weeks after that to remove more margin. Stage 1 with no lymph node involvement and had 16 radiation txs. That was the worst for me. I got second degree burns that took a while to heal but I am ok now except for a VERY sore spot in my breast that I am getting checked tomorrow. Start Tamoxafen tomorrow too. Good luck to you!
    over 5 years Flag
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      anonymous
      Stage 2A Patient

      Kaye how do you feel now?

      almost 5 years Flag
  • Jacquie B Profile
    anonymous
    Learning About Breast Cancer
    I just went through it a month ago. I won't lie, the radio active injection was painful but not as painful as when I woke up in recovery after the cancer and senital nodes removal. The senital node are heals good but the other incision was infected and did not drain well. The found a micro scopic spot if cancer in my senital nodes. They also had to go back for more tissue a week ago since they suspected they may not have got all the cells. I am feeling 100% better after the last operation. My Dr cleaned out the infected area and results tomorrow. I assume radiation in the next 3-4 weeks.
    over 5 years Flag
    • Jacquie B Profile
      匿名
      了解乳腺癌

      Oops, pressed send. None of the pain has not been worth the removal of the cancer. I went in knowing that I would have to go through some pain to get better. Be strong my dear girl.

      over 5 years Flag
  • Karen G Profile
    anonymous
    Stage 2A Patient
    Thank you for your response. I was more concerned with the pain from the radioactive injections and dye in the breast before the surgery (I am getting General Anesthesia for the surgery itself). The hospital prescribed a numbing cream that I need to put on one and a half hours before.
    over 5 years Flag
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      anonymous
      Survivor since 2012

      I had 4 injections without numbing around the areola. It was painful but short-lived. I can't judge my pain threshold . It wasn't as painful as the core Biopsy for me. Try to focus on the healing it will lead to. Let your techs know your fears....

      more

      I had 4 injections without numbing around the areola. It was painful but short-lived. I can't judge my pain threshold . It wasn't as painful as the core Biopsy for me. Try to focus on the healing it will lead to. Let your techs know your fears. Mine were great and talked and nursed me through the procedure. Healing hugs to you. Jo

      over 5 years Flag
    • Jacquie B Profile
      anonymous
      Learning About Breast Cancer

      I didn't have numbing cream either. Not fun but you are right Jo, short lived.

      over 5 years Flag
  • Thumb avatar default
    anonymous
    Stage 2A Patient
    Surgery is over now. Took 4 hours instead of 1 and a half. They found stuff in my Lymphnodes and ended up removing more than 3. My husband thinks it was 15. How does this affect my chances of survival?
    over 5 years Comment Flag

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