Is it possible to somehow improve my odds of regaining sensation after Mastectomy?

I understand that I'll never regain the sensation I had before the tissue removal. But is there anything I can do to make the odds of regaining at least a little of it better? Is there maybe some supplement, cream, ointment, exercise, massage, lifestyle, etc - that helps the nerves heal? What can I do and what shouldn't I do?

Doctor Answers 3

Sensation Loss After Mastectomy

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Patients have reported regaining sensation for up to 2 years following mastectomy. There is not much that you can do on your own to help increase sensation however, I do recommend massaging the skin flaps which has seemed to help patient's improve circulation and rebuild sensory nerve cognition. Good luck!

Is it somehow possible to somehow improve my odds of regaining sensation after mastectomy?

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Hello!  Thank you for your question!  Sensation to the breast will certainly be altered and never be the same following a mastectomy. However, the cutaneous nerves will still be intact. After any surgical procedure, the nerves to the area will be affected and will take several weeks to months to return. It takes up to a year to regain sensation to the surrounding area. If after this time the area dies not improve, the chances are likely that it may be permanent.

Things that may help are to re-educate the nerves in the area. Use various textures to the area. Try different pressures and movements to allow the nerves to rebuild sensory cognition. Use these items when in shower, putting on lotion, or just massaging the areas. Loofahs, washcloths, scrubs, etc. are good. Hope that this helps. Best wishes and hopes for a great outcome!

Lewis Albert Andres, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 28 reviews

Mastectomy and skin sensation

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Unfortunately there is nothing that you can do to improve the sensory recovery to the skin after a mastectomy. The numbness may be permanent.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.