Thursday, October 22, 2009

Stitches Out - Planning For Surgery

I went to see Dr. Keller today. First the PA took out all the stitches. It took a long time and it looked like a big pile of dead bugs by the time she was finished. After she was finished I saw Dr. Keller. He explained that the surgery on Tuesday would be to place a tissue expander. It will go behind my pectoral muscle. He said he would have done it when he removed the failed flap but my risk of infection after two surgeries was entirely too high. He said it is still higher than he would like, but we can't wait anymore. We can't wait because the skin will start to contract if it isn't filled. If you lose your original skin reconstruction is not so great. We also can't wait any longer because they won't start chemo until it is completely healed. If we did, there is too much risk of infection. We don't want to wait on the chemo any longer than absolutely necessary.

He said to expect this surgery to be pretty painful. He said it wouldn't be so bad normally, but it is already pretty inflamed after two surgeries so it will hurt. He said I will get a drain again. That is a bummer since I just got rid of six and also because it leaves a scar. More scars. Uggghhh. It will be slightly filled with saline. It will have a port where saline can be added. I will have to go periodically to have it filled more and it will be painful each time because it stretches the perctoral muscle. When it is at the desired size it can be replaced by a permanent implant. They are called that but they are not really permanent. It will have to be replaced every few years. That requires more surgery.

Dr. Keller brought up the possibility of doing another flap. I told him I was open to that, but not now. He said he would never even consider doing it now since I just had so many hours of surgery. He said my body was not in any shape for a big surgery. He said we could talk about it after the chemo is finished.

The surgery Tuesday will be a one day surgery. I am so glad because I have absolutely no confidence in the floor care at LIJ. The only reason I will do this there at all is that I have no choice. Dr. Keller also assures me that I will be very carefully monitored. I can go home at the end of the day. My friend Cathy is going to stay here on Tuesday night to help me. My babysitter Christine is going to keep Julianna overnight on Tuesday. My Dad and Betty are going to keep Julianna Monday night since I have to be there at 6 am. Thanks everyone!!

So, here we go again. I would have gone back to work next week if it weren't for these extra surgeries. It is a big bummer because I am now returning to start after all the post op gains I have made. Hopefully it won't take so long to get better.

Driving around today was great. Since I know I won't be able to do it soon it was even better. I like to LOL. It was warm out. Windows down, sunroof open and great tunes. It doesn't get better. Keep your fingers crossed that surgery goes as planned.

Tomorrow I am having a MUGA scan. I will post about it after.

No comments:

Post a Comment