Well y’all, it happened... I got my rack back!
I had my surgery Tuesday. I went to sleep at 8 am and woke up sometime that evening with cleavage! It is WILD! If anyone is concerned about the actual reconstruction, it’s called DIEP flap, where they take tissue and skin from my abdomen, and transplant it to my chest. In super basic terms they gave me a tummy tuck and turned it into a a titty. Obviously it’s a lot more complicated than that, and involves microsurgery to attach the one artery and vein involved, but that’s the idea. We also decided last minute (like half an hour before I went to the OR) to do a lift on my right breast, for balance. We had always talked about doing a lift, or reduction, or something, on the right, for a more symmetrical result, but it was always presented as a secondary procedure. We’d make sure the flap took properly, and then when it was healed we could touch it up if needed, and balance the right. But no, we had the OR time, which COVID is making more precious all the time, and actually had a second breast surgeon on hand, so yeah. One and done!
The first 24ish hours post-op, they check the flap visually, and with Doppler, to make sure there is blood flow and no necrosis. If shit is going south I’d have been taken back to the OR immediately. Thankfully, all went well. They backed the checks off to every 2 hours, then every 4. I don’t know if the doctors and nurses were trying to hype me up because of the whole mental aspect of healing, or if I really was a model patient. They kept saying how incredible everything looked and how well I’m healing.
I was in hospital until Saturday morning, when I got dressed for the first time in nearly a week, and got the hell out of there.
I was expecting the pain to be a lot worse. It’s certainly not pain-free, but never have I been over a 2/10 pain level with this whole thing. I didn’t even bother filling my prescription for tramadol after I was discharged, I just take an extra strength ibuprofen (and another drug for nerve pain) a few times a day.
I’ve got 2 drains in my lower abdomen which are a pain in the arse (especially because I have to wear an abdominal binder for 6 weeks), but it’s better than when I had three (they pulled the drain from my breast Saturday morning). I’m hoping to be drain-free by the weekend, or at least down to one.
I am both so excited about, and absolutely dreading shopping for and wearing real bras again. If things were open as normal I’d love to take a day and go to a nice lingerie store to be pampered and fitted and spoil myself. As it is, I’m praying online size guides are true and researching return policies.
Thank you for coming to my TED talk about my new boob situation.