Exchange Surgery Outcome

When I took the bra and bandages off three days after surgery and looked down, I cried! To me, to my eyes, what I saw was SQUARE pectorals and I cried. I cried little-girl, helpless tears as my husband looked at me with deer-in-the-headlight eyes. When I saw his reaction, I knew I had to gather up my emotions since he started talking about suing people.


© Unknown – Google

“I don’t like to see you cry!” He firmly expressed to me, “… and someone’s going to pay!”

It wasn’t until a full week had passed when I chatted on facebook with my cousin (she had her exchange surgery nearly two months prior) that we shared news and photographs. My cousin’s latest news was that one of her implants was infected. I asked how she knew something was wrong, what were her symptoms. She explained that a small area near the healed scar began to be painful and red and by the next morning, her whole ‘breast’ was swollen twice its size and a burning red in color.

infected Implant1

Staph Infected Implant
© Real Self . com

She sent me a picture, (not sharing my cousin’s photo here for her privacy) displaying the swollen, red breast mound. I commented on how painful the breast looked but how lovely and realistic they were. I also told her how dissatisfied I was with mine and that I would take a picture and share it with her.

It’s funny how I never had a picture of my breasts before cancer and now, I don’t care who sees them if it will help another person who is going through breast cancer and reconstruction.

When I looked at the photos I had just taken, I thought, “Gee, those aren’t my implants, those actually look pretty good!” But, they WERE my implants! They looked totally different in the photograph than they did when I looked downward at them.


7 days post-op Exchange Surgery
© Cancer Is Not Pink – Swoosieque

So, I shared my photo with my cousin and one of my daughters-in-law who both told me they thought they looked good! Oh, and my best friend concurred. So, I am content with them even though to me, looking downward, they still seem ‘square’. I am actually feeling so much better about them that I am now considering possibly changing my mind about nipple reconstruction. That’s a woman’s prerogative, right, to change her mind?

Meanwhile, I am going to concentrate on catching up with my blogging buddies’ posts and some wp challenges.


19 responses to “Exchange Surgery Outcome

  1. Wow! They look really good to me! I confess I was very upset for you, and worried about what I would see – but the photo you have shown is AMAZING. Hope you heal soon. xxx


  2. Yours look great. Mine are awful now. All the carving up of my chest … and not being able to wear a bra because of the still-healing incisions has not done them much good. They looked better before. Leaving them unsupported for months isn’t good. I was afraid how the heart surgery would impact the implants and I was right to worry.

    How natural your implants looks has to do with the technique the doctor used. In my case, there was choice A or choice A. If it didn’t work, there would be no reconstruction at all. Yours look a lot better than mine ever did — or ever will.

    How you feel about them is something else. I don’t LIKE mine because they are not me. They are soft lumps, imitation breasts. To me they will always be “other” and unnatural. Giving what she had to work with, my surgeon did a brilliant job … especially considering no other surgeon was even willing to try to do reconstruction.

    I’m going out on a limb here and suggesting we have problems with ourselves and a good shrink might be able to help. Personally, I’m really hating my body these days and I don’t know if I’ll ever feel good about myself again. Sad, but true.


    • I felt too good last Friday, so I was busy doing house chores until I felt very bad pain in my right “chest” signalling me to stop my scurrying around. Anyway, as I sat and watched t.v., my mind wandered and I thought about how I should be happy that I am alive!

      I should be happy that I did not have to go for chemo or radiation! I should be happy with my chest and quit being so damn picky. Besides, as my doctor pointed out to me – I am not a young lady anymore and I cannot expect my “boobs” to look like my cousin’s who is 20+ years younger than me.

      I am on that limb with you, haha, the problem is in my head, not my implants! 😀


  3. “They are soft lumps, imitation breasts. To me they will always be “other” and unnatural.”

    I feel a bit the same, although my surgeon did an AWESOME job and my boobs look as natural as can be expected, given that they are made out of belly fat. The nipples look like nipples, but of course they are unresponsive, and the whole area is pretty much numb. I’m considering whether to have the doctor do the areola tattoos, or to wait and have Celtic knots done in the nipple area, to make them more “mine”. I’ve already designed the knots, just in case, but can’t decide if that’s really what I want to do…


    • What do you mean, “celtic knots”? You mean tattoos of a celtic knot on top of the reconstructed nipple? I’m confused and I don’t want to miss out on something that sounds so cool! Please, more info!


  4. The psychological component is a big deal and i think not only do our doctors underestimate its importance, but so do we. I wasn’t kidding about a good shrink. I think all of us need to make peace with our changed (mangled?) bodies. I like the celtic knot idea!


  5. I admire the courage of all you women. In a similar situation, I would pray to have this kind of strength. God bless!


  6. What courage you have. What an ordeal and struggle. I am so glad that it all went well so far for you.I agree that a counselor or metal heath person is really needed from what my mom went through. You might want to consider a support group too.


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