Thursday, April 14, 2011

Post-Revision Surgery Update

Sorry for the delayed posting! I had this post mostly typed up and then I got caught up getting the family prepared for a 1 ½ week vacation and left on vacation! Below is information regarding the first couple of weeks following my revision surgery.

Here's an overview of the week of my surgery (Tuesday, March 8). I only took Vicodin for the first couple days following surgery and even then I only took 2 or 3 a day. On Thursday morning (2 days after my surgery) I had taken a Vicodin, but still had a pretty bad headache. I remembered I had ibuprofen from one of the earlier surgeries, so I took that and not only did my headache go away, but it actually seemed to help with the tightness and soreness better than the Vicodin. Go figure! My stupid body can’t handle strong drugs, like, morphine or dilaudid, and the Vicodin never really gets rid of my pain. I think it just takes a bit of the edge off the pain and makes me feel a little fuzzy headed. So, from Thursday afternoon on I stopped taking the Vicodin and started taking Ibuprofen. Additionally, the anti-nausea patch (transdermal-scopolamine) made my head fuzzy too; especially my eyes. When I tried to read something, a clock, a book, something on the t.v., my eyes just could not focus and everything was pretty fuzzy. I was supposed to leave the patch on for 72 hours, so I removed it Friday morning. It took awhile for the effect to wear off, but eventually it was much better. So, by taking that off and stopping the Vicodin I was starting to feel much less foggy.
Saturday I got worn out just by sitting at the park watching the boys play with their cousins. Pathetic, huh? Sunday I was still trying to get past the anesthesia fog and tiredness. Just sitting through church service wore me out! I still took a nap and I was still very tight, sore and had minimal pain. My sweet husband did so much on Sunday to make as little work for me to have to do when he went back to work on Monday. He said he wanted to get as much done as he could because he wouldn’t be here to help and he knew it would be tiring for me to just get back to some of the normal things like driving, dropping and picking up the boys, making everyone’s meals, regular cleaning up after the boys, helping with homework (plus working on a science fair project), etc. Plus, my nephews were in town staying with my dad and we had them spend the night Monday, so they could play with the boys. So even though I had 4 boys at the house ages 9, 7, 6 and 4, I did pretty well on Monday. My dad was sweet and took the boys for a little during the afternoon so I could take a nap and rest a bit.

By Tuesday (1 week after my surgery), things really turned. I woke up pretty tired on Tuesday morning, but after making the boys muffins for breakfast (pretty big feat actually! It’s harder to grab things from the cabinets, pour and stir then you think!), having a cup of coffee and taking a nice hot shower, I was actually feeling really good! I was quite a bit more mobile and I was feeling happy with the placement of everything following surgery. After my exchange surgery in August, right away I remember not being happy with placement. The implants already seemed a bit low, not to mention being smaller than my natural breasts. Needless to say, it was a bit frustrating. On Tuesday, however, I was relieved that this surgery seemed to fix the problems. They will still be smaller than my natural breasts, but I think now that they are placed where they’re supposed to be they look very similar to how my natural breasts did with a bra. The scars aren’t bad. As expected, there is still a scar underneath each breast. However, she also made a small vertical incision from each nipple down to the original incision. This was to get rid of extra skin due to all of the stretching when the pockets disappeared after the last surgery. Also, in order to tighten things up inside to make sure the pockets stay secure this time around, there are a couple folds and puckers of my skin to the sides of my breasts. My surgeon felt a little bad because of those, but I told her they didn’t bother me. I would much rather have a few folds and imperfections and have everything stay where it is this time. I would prefer to not have another surgery. I had my appointment that day with my plastic surgeon (PS) and she said everything was healing well, so she removed my external sutures! That was nice because they are kind of itchy and a bit uncomfortable.

Wednesday my hubby had to leave town again. Just for three days, so not too bad. My right side underneath was bothering me a bit and I noticed my PS had left a suture. It was directly in the middle on the underneath incision right where the vertical incision meets. I didn’t remember her saying she was going to leave one, so I figured it was accidentally. That area was a bit more achy during the day and in the afternoon I noticed right above that suture on the vertical incision the skin had pulled apart and was gaping slightly open. Because it is on the underneath area of my breast I could only see it with a smaller mirror and it was really difficult to tell how much it was open and if it was bad or not. It oozed a little blood color at first and then a light red-pink. I decided to call it safe and called my PS’s office, but it was already almost 5. They made me an appointment for the next morning. I had placed a butterfly band-aid over that part to be safe and make myself feel like something was holding it together. If I’m being honest I worried myself a little. The actual opening wasn’t a very large portion, but it was right on the part of my breast where there is the most pressure and weight from the implant. So, I started to worry about it splitting open more and causing problems. However, Thursday morning it already looked much better. I’m pretty sure the nurse who saw me probably thought I was being paranoid, but I just couldn’t tell how bad it was by myself!

Thursday to Thursday (March 17-24), was getting back into the swing of things. I was feeling a lot better, but still got tired and worn out fairly easily. I had sharp twinges and pain when I tried to move in certain directions, but there was not a constant tightness as there was initially after the surgery. It was strange to forget my “constraints” and reach my arm in a specific way and feel sudden, sharp pain. These were mostly from the right side where the more prominent fold is. I believe the pain was from where the internal stitches are and I just had to work with it and stretch it out over time. I was still being careful on heavy lifting because I really didn’t want to ruin anything. I didn’t want to assume I could lift or push/pull something and then affect the pockets or sutures, so I was playing it safe. Better safe than sorry, right?

Well, that’s a quick update for the couple of weeks following my revision surgery. I will post again very soon with a more recent update. Thanks for hanging in there for this long detailed post! :)

Until next time, here’s to naps, regaining energy and progressive healing. :)


  1. If my incision was looking like it was opening again, I would have kind of freaked out too!

    I'm glad you're healing well and that everything went ok! Hopefully no more surgeries for quite a while. =]

  2. I was just starting to wonder if you had another update for us. I'm glad things look like they're more "in place" this time around. Yay!

  3. Steff - Thanks for always reading! I appreciate the support. Hope you are well! :)

  4. Kir - Things are finally "in place" and it is a relief! I think very soon you will get your "I'm happy with them!" post! Hope you and the family are doing great! :)