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My cancer journey!

Hi ;I'm Suzie I was diagnosed breast cancer in October 2015 after being cancer free for 24 years. Was told due to past history my only option was a mastectomy and due to prior radiation and some complications my best chioce for reconstruction was a a delayed Tram Flap. I underwent mastectomy on 11/4/15 and TRAM flap on 4/ 4/16 . I have had multiple surgeries for necrotic skin necrotic fat lumps debreading of abdomin and put on wound vac fo 5 weeks for seromas. I have an incisional hernia and the rt side of my abdomin is a large bulge, the bulge has migrated to the lower abdomen and is starting to stretch to the left side now. I have seen two General sergons who both say they can repair the hernia but can't do any thing about the bulge which causes me great pain , and requires me to where a abdominal binder at all times unless I am sleeping"I can't stand or sit for long without it,as it feels like my insides are ripping apart".

I have read thatwomen who have hernia repair with this problem have multiple failed surgeries, but there are Doctors who repair this type of hernias as well as the bulgewith specific surgery developed for this with vary high success rates but don't know where or how to find them in my state . The Dr.s I have read about are in Ohio ,New York,Calafornia , Texas, Europe and India . I live in Massachusetts and am on a fixed income and no able to travle . So I am asking if any one knows of a doctor who practices in MA that may be able to help me. Thank you for any help even if it is a prayer or passing this along so any one else considering this knows the risks. I thought I researched this pretty well , but not well enough. My daughter is a nurse she asked lots of questions specifically about the risk of this happening and was told the chance was so small that this was my best option. As it turns out the chance of this happining to women in there late 50's who are overweight is 25%

1/4 that is a lot especially if you are that one out of four that it happens to.

The emotional turmoil this has caused has been as devastating as the physical

Thank you for the opportunity to share. My pray for all on this site is that you are blessed with peace a kind journey ahead and a loving and supportive family.

5 Replies

Have you tried going to a women's health clinic. I hear they are good and even help when you are on a fixed income. Praying for you.

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Thanks our insurance is pretty good and I have seen Dr. here that are considered tops in there field. The problem is that vary few doctors do the types of surgery needed to fix the problem . It is easier to fix the hernia 3,4 or 5 times. Between Insurance payments meds and every day costs of living with both me and my husband fighting cancer and the side effects / complications I don't have money to travel out of state the doctors that I have found that do the surgery.

Many TRAM flap survivors who have this complication suffer thru countless hernia surgeries and the pain never ends . I prefer not to go that route .

Thanks again for your



Prayers are going you're way for you and your spouse!


Dear Suzie... I had to look up half of the terminology that you used in your post! Wow! You certainly are riding an emotional & physical rollercoaster. I am keeping you in my thoughts and sending healing hugs your way. I too live in MA. And have found the BC care in the south coast area of the state (south east of Boston) to be very good. Boston has some excellent hospitals and physicians. Have you tried contacting Dana Farber? One would hope that someone there could steer you in the direction that would be helpful for your health issues relating to BC treatment. Wish I had something more specific for you... wishing for helpful information for you and for some relief. Take Care....

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Thanks for the hugs and prayers they are deeply appricated. I live in western Mass., and my cardiologist recomended that I go to Mass General earlier this week I will be calling them next week. I thought I would reach out to the breast cancer community and see if any one could recomend someone.

Thanks again and good luck on your journey.

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