What is a bilateral mastectomy surgery

How is a bilateral mastectomy performed?

During the procedure

A mastectomy is usually performed under general anesthesia, so you’re not aware during the surgery. Your surgeon starts by making an elliptical incision around your breast. The breast tissue is removed and, depending on your procedure, other parts of the breast also may be removed.

What can I expect after a bilateral mastectomy?

The recovery time from a double mastectomy can vary from person to person, but it typically takes 4 to 6 weeks. Some surgeries involve removing the breast tissue but saving the nipple, while others remove the whole breast. More radical mastectomies also remove chest muscle and, rarely, the lymph nodes.

What does bilateral breast surgery mean?

A bilateral mastectomy is the surgical removal of both breasts to treat or prevent breast cancer. There are several reasons why a patient might need or choose to undergo this procedure.

How long does a double mastectomy surgery take?

During mastectomy surgery

Mastectomy with axillary dissection can take 2-3 hours. If reconstruction is performed at the same time, surgery will take longer. Most mastectomy incisions are in the shape of an oval around the nipple, running across the width of the breast.

What is the difference between a bilateral mastectomy and a double mastectomy?

When both breasts are removed, it is called a double (or bilateral) mastectomy. Double mastectomy is done as a risk-reducing surgery for women at very high risk for getting breast cancer, such as those with a BRCA gene mutation. Most of these mastectomies are simple mastectomies, but some may be nipple-sparing.

How do you sleep after a mastectomy?

Sleep Position After Breast Surgery

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Instead, most plastic surgeons recommend that patients who have had breast surgery sleep exclusively on their backs until they are fully healed.

Do I need tamoxifen after bilateral mastectomy?

Do I need to take hormone therapy—tamoxifen or an aromatase inhibitor—if I have had a double mastectomy to treat invasive breast cancer? Hormone therapy is still recommended for women with early-stage breast cancer who have had mastectomies because it can help prevent a distant recurrence (metastatic disease).

How soon can you drive after mastectomy?

Driving. Get advice from your doctor or nurse about when to start driving. Generally, you should be OK to drive if you can make an emergency stop without discomfort in the wound. Some people are able to drive about 3 weeks after the operation, but it may be sooner or later than this depending on how you feel.

How long does the pain last after a mastectomy?

Right after the surgery you will probably feel weak, and you may feel sore for 2 to 3 days. You may have a pulling or stretching sensation near or under your arm. You may also have itching, tingling, and throbbing in the area. This will get better in a few days.

Can breast tissue grow back after mastectomy?

In most instances, all of your breast tissue is removed during a mastectomy. As a result, it is extremely unlikely that your breast tissue will grow back after the procedure. Fortunately, you can undergo breast reconstruction to restore a natural breast appearance.

Can you choose to have a double mastectomy?

In many cases, women with a family history of breast cancer can choose to have a double mastectomy, although insurance can be picky about who is and isn’t approved. Those with a first degree relative, mother, sister or daughter, who was diagnosed before the age of 50 may consider bilateral mastectomy.

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Can you get fake breasts after a mastectomy?

Breast implants are one of the ways plastic surgeons can create a reconstructed breast after a mastectomy, the term for when all of your natural breast tissue is removed, or in some cases, after a lumpectomy, which removes only the tumor and an area of normal tissue around that.

How long do drains stay in after double mastectomy?

The surgeon removes all of the breast tissue. In most, but not all cases, the nipple and areola are also removed. The surgeon closes the skin with stitches and puts in 1-2 tubes (surgical drains) so fluid from the wound can drain out (see image below). The drain(s) stays in for about a week to 10 days after surgery.

Is mastectomy surgery painful?

Pain from surgery. You will have some pain after breast surgery (lumpectomy, mastectomy or breast reconstruction). For most people, this pain is temporary and goes away after you heal from the surgery.

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