After surgery, your body needs time to recover. You will receive information about helping your body heal. You may also be given a temporary prosthesis to wear during this time. And you'll learn what complications to watch for.
Note: In the future, tell all medical providers that you've had a mastectomy and on which side. You should not have a blood draw or IV line on that side.
After surgery, you may be given a temporary prosthesis. It's a soft breast form that fits into a bra. Some women wear breast forms to help balance weight and avoid back strain. Other women wear them for appearance. Talk to your doctor if you want a prescription for a permanent prosthesis. You may wear it when your incision feels less tender and swollen.
A seroma is a large collection of fluid that occurs under the arm or the incision. It can appear 5 to 10 days after surgery. A small seroma is normal. It's likely to go away by itself in a few weeks. If you have a large seroma, your surgeon may drain (aspirate) it using a syringe and needle.
Swelling of the arm on the side of surgery is called lymphedema. It occurs when the normal flow of lymph in the arm is reduced. This can happen if lymph nodes under the arm are removed or if the underarm is treated with radiation therapy. Lymphedema can occur long after surgery. To limit problems:
Slowly return to normal use of the arm on the side of the surgery.
Protect your hand and arm from infection. Wash your hands often. And wear gloves when cleaning or gardening.
Keep the fluid moving in your operated arm. Don't wear tight sleeves, elastic cuffs, bracelets, wristwatches, or rings on that arm.
Do exercises to help prevent swelling and improve circulation. For example, squeeze a rubber ball with your hand.
Date Last Reviewed: 2007-01-15T00:00:00-07:00
Date Last Modified: 2008-02-14T00:00:00-07:00
Dr. Marsha Bornt started seeing me when I was in my early twenties (20 years ago). After seeing many doctors, she was the 1st doctor to diagnose me with endometriosis. I went on to have many laparoscopies with her over the years. In my thirties I moved about 45-50 min away from Apple Hill, so I ended up seeing another doctor who performed another laparoscopy...
Staff was very friendly and professional. I had a few questions that the doctor was more than happy to answer for me. I got all that needed to be done in a very timely manner. I was very pleased with my visit. Trying to find a parking spot was very frustrating though. Arrive at least 15 minutes prior to your appointment.
I am always glad to meet with Dr. Bornt. She is very pleasant and makes sure she has answered all your questions or concerns. She is very thorough in her approach about your medical history . . .wants only the best for you as her patient.