The surgeon came by to discuss the results of the surgery with us.  All went well but he did have to do extra internal muscle work along with removing some scar tissue.  The implants fit well and are nice and soft, the expanders were so hard and stiff.  There will be additional pain associated with the work he had to do with the muscles and she has surgical drains again.  There is a pain management probe inserted and a ball at the end that will be administering pain medication too.  We can remove it and the dressings on Saturday.  More to come later.

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Diane’s surgery was scheduled for 1:00PM.  The surgical suite was not ready until 2:15PM.  The outpatient surgical dept shuts down at 5-5:30PM depending on when the scheduled surgeries are completed for day.

So if the surgery is not completed by that time period the patient is admitted and goes upstairs to wait until they are ready to be discharged.  That is what we are looking at right now unless the surgery goes quicker than expected.  That is doubtful because the surgeon had already informed us he has some extra work to do to make the results match his expectations.   He has a reputation for being meticulous in his work.  I will let y’all know more when I know more.

Thank you for all the support and prayers.  Fred

Jessie has recently been diagnosed with invasive breast cancer.  The short story is a lumpectomy was performed to remove a small cancerous mass and the pathology report showed another form of cancer was also present.  She is scheduled to have surgery tomorrow (Tuesday) to remove the one breast where the cancer was found.  She will need to undergo chemotherapy and radiation treatments, then they will start the re-construction process.

I have been struggling through a back injury and I take muscle relaxers at night that make me a little drowsy so if  you want more information you can visit Jessie’s Journal by clicking this link or the one in the sidebar.  Jessie lives in Ireland and is part of a non-denominational mission team and therefore will be relying on co-workers and friends for local support since she lives away from family.

On Wednesday Diane enters the long-awaited final phase of her re-construction and recovery.  She will have surgery to remove the rigid, firm, and heavy; saline filled expanders.  They have literally been a real pain in her chest.

Sleeping has been the biggest challenge, our bed has been taken over with an assortment of props and pillows.  There have been many nights when all of that has not been good enough and she sleeps a good part of the early morning hours in the recliner.  Muscle pain and spasms in the back, sides and chest area have become extremely annoying and uncomfortable.  The weather even pitches in to provide pain and discomfort when there is a front moving in and rain is in the forecast.  Plus each time saline was added to the expanders the pain and discomfort increased until her body adjusted to the additional size and weight.

The surgery is scheduled for 1:00pm and the surgeon told Diane it would last approximately three hours because he has some internal adjustments to make.  As long as everything goes well Diane will be home  late afternoon or early evening.  I will be blogging with updates from the hospital and later on when we arrive home.

Diane had her appointment with the breast surgeon this morning.   The surgeon told us everything is going well with Diane’s recovery.  There is a little fluid building up on the side of her left breast and if it continues to accumulate, then it may need to be drained.  If the fluid needs draining it can wait until Monday to make an appointment for later that day.  The breast surgeon said she could do it; or if the plastic surgeon prefers, he can do it otherwise.  The body would normally absorb most of the fluid at this stage, but sometimes it does need to be drained.

The breast surgeon wants to see Diane every six months for the next two years to do a visual check-up.  There will  always be a minute amount of breast tissue present in her body, it is not possible to remove all of it, individual or small groups of cells are so small that some are always left behind.  If a mass did form from what is left behind there is very little space for the mass to hide.  So if anything does form it can usually be found easily, with Diane’s frame there is just a thin layer of tissue left between the pectoral muscle and the skin.  Mammograms are a thing of the past, an ultrasound or MRI would be ordered if a mass was visually found at some point.

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Diane visited the plastic surgeon today.  He removed the tape that was covering the drains at the point where they emerged from the upper incisions.  The tape was irritating and uncomfortable since day one, I think it has been Diane’s number one complaint.  Then he pulled and the drain tubes slipped right out.  The drain ports were a constant pain in her side, plus they kept her from sleeping on her side, sleeping on her back had been getting old.  The drain reservoirs and tubes were always in the way too.

Diane asked the surgeon if everything looked fine.  He smiled and proudly said of course, you look great already and you will only look better as we move forward.  Diane really likes him, he is so positive and he is confident in his abilities.  He is meticulous in his work and it shows, if he wasn’t a surgeon he would probably be an artist. Read the rest of this entry »

The breast surgeon’s assistant called Diane with a mini report.  The surgeon is trying to get a definitive answer on any risks involved in keeping the left nipple, that is the one that was a concern going into this.  The left breast had the most going on inside it, the right one not so much.  They do know that there was no cancer present, and that is the most important news of all.

We will be meeting with the breast surgeon on Friday during Diane’s scheduled appointment to discuss the pathology report in greater detail.  We will know then, what the recommendation will be for the right nipple.  That’s all we know for now.

OK, first the bad news.  It’s only bad news because it is no news, yet.  I’m not very good at waiting, for example; I can’t wait until all this is a memory in our past.  More on the news front, starting in the morning.

Diane called the plastic surgeon’s office to report on the drainage levels.  I empty the reservoirs twice a day, but the 6:30am one is the one that needs to be constant.  Diane is supposed to call the office once a day and report the 24hr amount.  Today was the first day she could call in due to the weekend.  Diane talked to the office manager and she told her the amounts looked good.  So now Diane has an appointment with the plastic surgeon Thursday morning and if all goes well the drains will be removed.  That would be welcomed by both of us, but especially the “wonderful, beautiful” patient.  (That was for anyone that thinks I am doing this to build up points with the “wonderful, beautiful” patient  😉 .)

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It snowed more than 1″ last night, the snow stuck to all the trees, bushes, grass, and even coated the wood fence on the north faces.  The roads were too warm so the snow melted right away, the only areas that could cause difficulty were the bridges and overpasses.  The boys went to church this morning, while I stayed home with Diane and rested.

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Diane continues to do well and make good progress.  We had a lot of rain starting early this morning, it was a heavy, cold rain.  There was snow at the tail end of the storm, but that was well to the north.

Bonnie came by this morning after the storms had passed and the sky was trying to clear.  She brought her special tape and a stool for us to use in the tub if we wanted.  We checked the tape under Diane’s arms that was causing so much discomfort, but there was nothing we could do to change it in order to take the discomfort away.  The tape is sealing the drain ports protruding from the incision that was used to clear the breast tissue from the upper breast cavity.

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Breast Cancer Awareness

Breast Cancer Awareness

July 2018
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