DIEP Flap Reconstruction

June 21, 2016 - 11:25

Hi Spudburf, long time since I posted here but its 4 years ago today since I started my Chemo and I just thought Id see how everyone is doing.... Its now a year and 3 months since my Diep surgery. I never went back for the nipple or the lipo filling, I had just had enough of pain in my tummy area at the time. I may do it eventually , never say never, but for now Im happy and relieved not to be in Patient mode. How are you doing these days, have you recovered well? Would you do it again? I still have some soreness but its not the worst thing. Anyway I hope youre well and happy... Ive just cut the grass and a year ago that would have been unthinkable!!! So onwards and upwards we go....

December 9, 2016 - 15:00

Ladies; it's been a looooong time since I was on this forum so hoping things are OK for you all.
I'm on looking for a consensus of having DIEP done. I had immediate reconstruction using LD Flap and implant which failed and then had further surgery to fix this which has also failed. So now my options are
a) deconstruct all my previous surgery and go flat chested on one side
b) go back and get another implant in (bawk)
c) get lipofill from tummy area done (apparently this is last resort; the jury is out on this for 2 surgeons I have visited)
d) DIEP flap.

What are your thoughts on DIEP since ye have had it done? Is it worth the surgery and recovery?

Looking forward to hearing from you x

February 12, 2017 - 00:04

Hi, I am on the list for the DIEP flap, I'm going for another consult with the plastics team next week. My history is, dx with triple negative bc at the age of 32, immediate surgery, removal of right breast reconstruction with saline implant then chemo and radio. After the radio the implant capsulated and was removed and replaced only to capsulate again. I am in constant pain and discomfort with it so it needs to come out and I am not risking another one going back in. The surgeon who initially did my surgery has left the country so I was referred to Beaumont and met Mr Ajhmal. He said the waiting list was at least 8 months, which is almost up. So I am hoping to get the surgery done soon. I have read some very helpful posts here but please if you can think of anything else, not them up. I have small kids and am somehow going to try and balance all this too.

February 25, 2017 - 22:48

Hi Spudburf!
Just wondering how you are doing now and hoping all of this horrible journey is behind you? I am still to have reconstruction Diap being what I am leaning towards. Can I ask if it was Dublin or Cork you had surgery in?...I am really hoping for a recommendation of a plastic surgeon in Cork from anyone that may have ...God sometimes the more research you do the more confusing it becomes! xx

February 25, 2017 - 22:52

Hi Encee!...just read you post and wondering if you have made a decision on which way to go re reconstruction?...I am hoping to have Diap too and am researching big time but can be so daunting....am really looking for names of Cork Surgeons?

April 4, 2017 - 22:39

Hi Wings 11, I'm currently researching Diep Flap surgery also. I'm in Cork and attending CUH. I had immediate reconstruction and the implant failed so dont want to go down that route again. I would really love to hear from any ladies that have recovered from this surgery, before I make my final decision.

September 7, 2017 - 15:06

Liddylou, Wings11, Cathy61;
I feel so bad that I haven’t been back on this forum, especially when I got so much support from many people – and I haven’t really contributed much in the last while! Just wondering if you have had surgery or where things are at for you.
There were many reasons why I was reluctant to go for DIEP which is why I was asking for opinions on this forum...
So far away from home, out of my comfort zone, where would I get help if there were post-surgery complications?
How would I feel if it failed (bearing in mind I already had two failed reconstructions), not wanting to be out of action for months again while recovering, could I ask my family to go through the process again, care for me, etc.?
Anyway, after long deliberations (like a year!!) I bit the bullet and decided to go for the DIEP surgery. I’m five weeks post-surgery. I was EXTREMELY anxious in the lead up to the surgery so I guess I was on a high when I came out of surgery in one piece, and was released from hospital as scheduled. And I was absolutely flying it when I got home. Possibly doing too well. And with the highs, come the lows so I had a couple of wonky days – more to do with having the odd bad night’s sleep (I’m like Satan when I don’t get my sleep!) So I guess I could measure it as 14 steps forward, 2 steps back.
I have had practically no pain since a few days after surgery, just contending with the discomfort and tightness from the surgical sites. And having to walk stooped-over like Quasimodo certainly didn’t do much for my shoulders – in fact, my initial biggest problem area was my “good” shoulder – I had serious pain, probably from minding my surgery side and doing everything with the other side. Paracetamol, Voltarol and hot-water bottle eventually took care of that. Like a lot of other people, I have had some wound breakdown on my abdomen so I’m getting it dressed in between clinics a couple of times a week by my Public Health Nurse.
The biggest thing this patient had to learn was patience!! I’m so independent, that having to ask for help again goes against every fibre of my being. But I’m looking at this as being a very small part of what I hope will be a long and healthy life. To stop me from being tempted to do stupid stuff, I’ve organised for someone to come in twice a week for an hour to vacuum, clean cobwebs, clean bathrooms and tidy the kitchen (otherwise I just close my eyes and think happy thoughts when I see something that needs to be done!), and I’ve organised someone else to come in to give the garden a once-over – cut the grass, get at the weeds, clip the hedges). And I’ve stopped being the genial hostess. I’m leaving my backdoor open and if someone wants to visit me, they have to trot into the sittingroom or bedroom. And if they want tea or coffee, they are told to help themselves. Unless I’m actually up and about... then I might bother my arse and get the milk out, lol.
If I do feel a bit of an itch to chance doing something, I go back to bed and read or watch a movie. Or just think about life and congratulate myself on all I have done, and think how lucky and grateful I am to have my fabulous, fabulous husband and daughters, and have sisters, brothers, friends and neighbours who are so kind, thoughtful and generous.
And today, it feels like I have shifted from 1st gear to second gear – I can lift my arm much easier than I could last week, and I just feel a bit different, something I can’t put my finger on. I’m afraid to be optimistic in thinking that maybe this surgery has been successful; I am only 5 weeks post-surgery so I’m so conscious that it’s early days yet. I also started taking a wheatgrass blend last week (it is the powder blend from Holland and Barrett with other stuff in it too), the smell reminds me of tea-leaves. I mix it with orange juice – I have never eaten ashes in my life but I’m guessing if I did, they would taste like this crap, lol. But it hasn’t done anything wrong to me either – maybe this is what is making me feel different.
I’ll check in here next week – if you have any questions, feel free to ask xx

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