Breast Reconstruction and Fat Necrosis

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In 2000, I had a lumpectomy, chemo and radiation...

In 2000, I had a lumpectomy, chemo and radiation for cancer in my left breast. In 2002, I underwent another lupectomy to remove suspicious tissue, which was determined to be fat necrosis. After that surgery, I have experienced even more problems with some breast deformity, hard painful tissue, and most importantly, interference with diagnostic tests.

Although getting clear answers was very difficult at times, all of these problems were attributed to fat necrosis. In February 2009, I had this hard area in my breast removed and had DIEP reconstruction. Although I have been concerned about the cosmetic result, the graft was successful for the most part and my doctor assures me that some revision will create the desired appearance.

However, I have been developing a new, painful, hard lump near the armpit. My surgeon has scheduled surgery to remove this as well as to complete the cosmetic revisions. I am concerned that the prior radiation has created a problem with healing that will continue; that the new incision will also develop problems.

Is there anything I can do to maximize the success of the sugery?

San Diego Plastic Surgeon

He shared my concern that continual problems with mammograms, ultrasounds, etc. would continue to cause unue stress. He also shared my fear that cancer could be hidden in the mass of hard tisssue.

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