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I am having a left breast mastectomy on Thursday. Is there anything I need to know about what to bring to the hospital and what clothes to wear home after it? Anything else that will help me would be great.

Jennifer Jones Profile
Asked by

anonymous

Patient almost 6 years
 
  • Roxann C Profile
    anonymous
    Stage 1 Patient
    I just got out of the hospital 5 weeks ago with my double mastectomy. These things helped me. You won't be able to shower for a few days until your drains come out whether you or at the hospital or at home. You may want to buy: 1) dry shampoo for your hair 2) baby wipes to wipe your body 3) tops with front buttons, you will not be able to lift your arm 4) you may want to go to a mastectomy product store and purchase an Amoena Hannah camisole. Its a special post op bra that holds the drains. Google it so you can see the picture. The bra they give you in the hospital is horrible and has velocro on it. Insurance and Medicaid will pay for the bra. You may want to buy 2. One to wash and the other to wear. You will wear this bra for 3-5 weeks post op. 5) an item that give you comfort sort of a "security blanket" but can be anything. 6) You may also want to go to the mastectomy product store and have a custom nipple prosthesis made. It will be a nipple that looks as close as possible to your other breast.
    almost 6 years Flag
    • Karen miller Profile
      anonymous
      Learning About Breast Cancer

      I also had a unilateral mastectomy 3 weeks ago. Ask them for a breast camisole that will velcro closed and give you some support for your other breast. I was released the next morning after surgery with one drain in place. Ask for alcohol wipes to...

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      I also had a unilateral mastectomy 3 weeks ago. Ask them for a breast camisole that will velcro closed and give you some support for your other breast. I was released the next morning after surgery with one drain in place. Ask for alcohol wipes to take home so that you can "milk" the drain tubing. You will also need a measuring cup to accurately drainage. Record the output and track it carefully. Drain will remain in 2-3 weeks. You will need about 40 alcohol pads. Take along loose fitting button down tops and sweat pants or yoga pants that can easily be pulled up and down. Bring slippers and plan to get out of bed asap after surgery and walk the floor. Take deep breaths and cough; expand your lungs, shake your legs to prevent blood clots - MOVE. Use the incentive spirometer they will provide for deep breathing exercises. I had a glued incision and was thankfully able to shower by day 3, so I did not bother with the dry shampoo. If lymph nodes are taken, the sorest part will be underarm. There is no quick fix, you will just need time to heal (no matter how many were taken). Ask for a lymphadema booklet and do the post op exercises immediately. I could not find a comfortable bra because of the armpit issue. Camisole was best then I just trialed and errored with breast forms from SteinMart and JC Penney that were under $20 and work great which I stuffed in my old slightly padded bras. You will do great! Pain was not a big deal. Emotionally it was harder. Look at pictures preop so you know what to expect post op. I did not and I was shocked (but overcoming it already). Keep in touch; I am only a couple weeks in front of you. It is doable. You don't know what strength is until being strong is your only choice!

      almost 6 years Flag
  • Karen miller Profile
    anonymous
    Learning About Breast Cancer
    I also had a unilateral mastectomy 3 weeks ago. Ask them for a breast camisole that will velcro closed and give you some support for your other breast. I was released the next morning after surgery with one drain in place. Ask for alcohol wipes to take home so that you can "milk" the drain tubing. You will also need a measuring cup to accurately drainage. Record the output and track it carefully. Drain will remain in 2-3 weeks. You will need about 40 alcohol pads. Take along loose fitting button down tops and sweat pants or yoga pants that can easily be pulled up and down. Bring slippers and plan to get out of bed asap after surgery and walk the floor. Take deep breaths and cough; expand your lungs, shake your legs to prevent blood clots - MOVE. Use the incentive spirometer they will provide for deep breathing exercises. I had a glued incision and was thankfully able to shower by day 3, so I did not bother with the dry shampoo. If lymph nodes are taken, the sorest part will be underarm. There is no quick fix, you will just need time to heal (no matter how many were taken). Ask for a lymphadema booklet and do the post op exercises immediately. I could not find a comfortable bra because of the armpit issue. Camisole was best then I just trialed and errored with breast forms from SteinMart and JC Penney that were under $20 and work great which I stuffed in my old slightly padded bras. You will do great! Pain was not a big deal. Emotionally it was harder. Look at pictures preop so you know what to expect post op. I did not and I was shocked (but overcoming it already). Keep in touch; I am only a couple weeks in front of you. It is doable. You don't know what strength is until being strong is your only choice! less than a minute ago • Edit • Flag
    almost 6 years Flag
    • Toni Olson Profile
      anonymous
      Learning About Breast Cancer

      I am having left unilateral mastectomy Tuesday and was told drains stay in 7-10 days ?

      about 2 years Flag
  • Karen miller Profile
    anonymous
    Learning About Breast Cancer
    I also had a unilateral mastectomy 3 weeks ago. Ask them for a breast camisole that will velcro closed and give you some support for your other breast. I was released the next morning after surgery with one drain in place. Ask for alcohol wipes to take home so that you can "milk" the drain tubing. You will also need a measuring cup to accurately record the drainage. Record the output and track it carefully. Drain will remain in 2-3 weeks. You will need about 40 alcohol pads. Take along loose fitting button down tops and sweat pants or yoga pants that can easily be pulled up and down. Bring slippers and plan to get out of bed asap after surgery and walk the floor. Take deep breaths and cough; expand your lungs, shake your legs to prevent blood clots - MOVE. Use the incentive spirometer they will provide for deep breathing exercises. I had a glued incision and was thankfully able to shower by day 3, so I did not bother with the dry shampoo. If lymph nodes are taken, the sorest part will be underarm. There is no quick fix, you will just need time to heal (no matter how many were taken). Ask for a lymphadema booklet and do the post op exercises immediately. I could not find a comfortable bra because of the armpit issue. Camisole was best then I just trialed and errored with breast forms from SteinMart and JC Penney that were under $20 and work great which I stuffed in my old slightly padded bras. You will do great! Pain was not a big deal. Emotionally it was harder. Look at pictures preop so you know what to expect post op. I did not and I was shocked (but overcoming it already). Keep in touch; I am only a couple weeks in front of you. It is doable. You don't know what strength is until being strong is your only choice! less than a minute ago • Edit • Flag
    almost 6 years Comment Flag
  • Yashmira Devine Profile
    anonymous
    Stage 1 Patient
    Hi Jennifer, It looks like everyone has given you a great list to take to the hospital. I live in NY and I also did not know what to take for a bilateral mastectomy that I had 5 weeks ago. My doctor's office gave me a goody bag full of stuff and the hospital staff were really nice and also gave me extra things. Some things that you may want to have A water bottle Life savers---- I know silly but they were great. I had that metallic taste in my mouth for days and the lifesavers helped a lot. a warm blanket- it does not matter how many blankets the hospital gives you, you still seem to be cold so be prepared. 2 small- 5x7 size pillows- came in the goody bag. Very helpful when going home. Used it to protect my chest from the seatbelt. If the hospital staff is willing to give you ask for a box of gloves, alcohol wipes, and the containers to measure the drains. but just in case- have these at home so you're not unprepared. The hospital also gave me an extra bra- one had velcro the other did not....very nice staff. Ask for one, it doesn't hurt to ask. the worst thing they can say is no. Good Luck, stay positive. This is a bump in the road of our lives. We just have to get through it. Sometimes we need help from someone or a few people to pick us up but what I have learned not only from my family and friends but also from the ladies here is that they will hold your hand with knowledge, info, and support.
    almost 6 years Comment Flag
  • celien thorne Profile
    anónimo
    Paciente
    I had a Right side mastectomy w 4 lymph nodes removed , , the bra they give is tight n packed w gauze so it reduces swelling n u have to sleep in it , the drains are the gross part but that's temp , use lots of pillows to prop u up n get comfy . I wore yoga pants n loose top. It will b awkward the first few days but it does pass ! You can do it ! Take care !
    almost 6 years Comment Flag
  • Thumb avatar default
    anonymous
    Stage 2A Patient
    Maybe a nice v shaped pillow will be good to sleep with
    almost 6 years Comment Flag
  • Traciann brundage Profile
    anonymous
    Learning About Breast Cancer
    Had a double mastectomy . My mom got me some nice button up shirts and one had pockets for the drains . Also my sister made me a large heart shaped pillow even my plastic surgeon had copied its been amazing .
    almost 6 years Comment Flag

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