health tips, health and wellness

How to Ease The Suffering from Side Effects of Breast Cancer Surgery

Have you been diagnosed with breast cancer? If so, surgery may be in your immediate future. Your doctor may recommend it for you. It will make it easier for you if you write down a list of questions that you may have about what lies ahead when your doctor operates on one or both of your breasts.

First of all, you want to know exactly what your doctor recommends as far as the specifics of the surgery. You'll want to know how long you'll be in the hospital. It may be that a partial mastectomy may be the answer for you. Has cancer spread to your lymph nodes?

If that's the case, how many of them will be removed and how will that affect you?


Just what are you facing during your surgery as well as before and after it? How will you take care of the incision? How extensive will the scarring be? How will your breast and lymph node surgery affect your shoulder and arm as far as their range of motion goes? How will you take care of the affected areas after surgery?

It's best if you can talk to someone who has already been through a similar surgery to get an idea of just what you're going to be facing. How long will it take you to get back on your feet and to experience a full recovery?

If one or both of your breasts are removed, this may affect your sense of balance. Naturally, this is something that your body will have to adjust to over a period of time. You may need to go to a physical therapist to help you get back to as much movement and agility  as possible . You'll need to know just what exercises you need to overcome any stiffness and pain that may result from surgery that affects your arms and breasts.

After your surgery, you'll have to be on guard to take care of your hand and arm on the side where the lymph nodes were removed. And you'll have to take special care of these areas for the rest of your life. When lymph nodes are removed, you may experience swelling in the affected arm and hand. So after the surgery and after initial healing, be sure to use the unaffected arm and hand to carry heavy items. Don't wear constricting clothing or jewelry on the affected arm. If you need shots, don't forget to take them in the arm that is not affected by surgery. Avoid putting harsh cleaning chemicals on your hands. Wear gloves when you do gardening or heavy-duty cleaning. Try not to get sunburned. Be very careful not to cut yourself when you train your nails and cuticles on the affected arm.

After breast surgery, your lymph nodes may swell. If they do, you can improve your circulation in that area and several ways.  Wear  an elastic sleeve, lift your arm above your head, massage your arm or use a special machine to try to remove the excess fluid from that area.

There are various factors that can cause your arm to retain fluid after lymph nodes have been surgically removed. If you wear tight clothing, that may cause your swollen arm to retain more fluid. The type of physical activities in which you engage after your surgery can affect how much fluid is retained. If your affected arm is injured, it can also cause it to retain more fluid.  Be especially on guard to protect your affected arm against sunburns, cuts and insect bites.

If your arm bothers you after having your lymph nodes removed, be sure to contact your doctor. Be glad that you live in this day and age when there are so many medical advancements to help you overcome breast cancer.