Unilateral Mastectomy Regret - SHARE Breast Canc...

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Unilateral Mastectomy Regret


I had a unilateral mastectomy and I regret it everyday. My doctors encouraged me to not remove both because it wasn’t necessary and just because Angela Jolie did it, everyone had started doing it and it didn’t improve “quality of life”. I listened to them. I had no idea how disproportionate I would look and how uncomfortable I would be. I had large breasts and I chose to reduce, but I’m still a DD. I can’t imagine going back in for surgery to start over. I’m 48 and single and at the time of my decision I was thinking I would still want to be sexy and date. I had no idea after I lost all my hair with chemo, gained 15 pounds and have wildly a-symmetrical breasts, that accepting myself was going to be this tough. I feel ugly and freakish everyday. I hate it when people say, so now you’re back to “normal”. I wish I could just be ok with my new normal and not hate myself for my bad surgical decision. It’s so hard! Sometimes, it’s hard to find a reason why I’m still allowed to walk on this planet. I should just be grateful for being alive, but the downward spiral of self hate is crippling.

12 Replies

Have a consultation with your plastic surgeon. Your insurance may pay for reconstruction. I had a lumpectomy on cancerous breast and reconstruction on noncancerous breast. They looked great.

After rads My lumpectomy breast shrunk and changed shape. My plastic surgeon says I can have fat taken from another part of my body and injected to match my breast closer to the other. I'm considering it. After all this..I wish I would of went down to a B. I was D and went to C. Nothing feels better than setting the girls free. I feel younger. Prayers that you find answers.

Thank you for your message, you are so sweet! I truly appreciate it, I’m so happy that you had a great result. I will see what I can do. Thank you again!

Hi, I too had a unilateral mastectomy with fat taken from my back and an implant, I had small original boobs and went up to a C cup so my consultant said once I had recovered from that big op he would put an implant in my good boob so that I was even and they are fab, however I started to get dimples in my bionic boob where my original cancer was and my consultant told me not to worry as they can do liposuction from thighs and pump into bionic breast, which they did and once again look fab. What I am trying to say is you must go back to your breast care consultant as they really care that you feel feminine again and your mental health is very important.

I’m not sure if us survivors ever feel normal again, or sexy (no matter how good the reconstruction) however you must keep going back and asking to be evened up. You are worth it and it’s extremely important and it’s the least you deserve after all you’ve been through. ❤️

liberation2018 in reply to Curbs

Thank you so much, that helps more then I can say.

me too, I don't recall it ever coming up though in consultations...I am 13 years post OG dx & now have MBC, same side as mastectomy. and really, don't care a bit about it anymore...bigger picture and all.

Hi! I had unilateral mastectomy 2 years ago. Yes it’s a lot to get used to. I truly felt that since I was told I couldn’t have reconstruction (they said I wouldn’t get clear margins but I did)they didn’t want to give a lot of advice on prosthetics. (No kick backs there) And I was also told the whole Angelina Jolee thing when asked about doing both. (I’m 49) At this point I’m fine with the whole thing...The biggest issue is finding a prosthetic and bras that work well! I typically put Priscilla ( my prosthetic) next to my skin not in the sleeve. I think it looks better that way. I find VS sport bra with front zipper work best. It’s all about wearing cute bras and not feeling like you’re buying a prosthetic bra to accommodate that but a bra u like...😀

-Here’s to u finding something that makes u feel cute and sexy again!

You’re amazing! Thank you for sharing your experience with me!


So sorry to read your post!

I had a bilateral mastectomy 20 years ago, followed by reconstruction a year later. For some reason, docs couldn’t get nipples to “take” and I always felt like I was left with two “blobs” that had to be explained before undressing at annual exams.

Your situation sounds like one where the surgeon did a poor job of either estimating the size of the implant or the size of the reduction. I would suggest you reach out to another breast surgeon for a consultation about planning ahead.

You should not be left in despair due to a botched surgery. A good doc will figure out a way to have this covered by insurance.

God bless you! I pray you find a caring and competent surgeon! ❤️❤️🙏🏻🙏🏻 Linda

Thank you, it helps to hear support in trying to make my breasts look and feel better, I was feeling like I should just be lucky to be alive, and that I shouldn’t be putting so much emphasis on this part. So thank you for permission to want a better outcome. 🌈

I know how you feel. I struggled greatly before my mastectomy with deciding whether or not to remove the healthy breast. I decided to have a unilateral mastectomy with tissue expander just about a year ago and I realize I made the right decision for me. My recovery was so difficult and I couldn’t imagine having had a bilateral. I also did not want an increased risk for complications. I ended up having a complication (hematoma) and had to have a 2nd surgery 10 days after the mastectomy. You did not make a bad surgical decision.

About 4 months ago I had the tissue expander replaced with a silicone implant and had a lift with smaller implant on my healthy breast to achieve symmetry. Well, they are quite uneven. The implant on healthy breast is too big and it hangs much lower than the other one. It looks like I still need a lift. I also now have only one nipple and will not be having one created because who knows what that would end up looking like! I feel that with all I’ve been through, I at least should be happy with final result. I’m sure most of us feel that way. But I just have to keep reminding myself that I am now cancer free and these irregularities are a sign of our strength, courage, and survival. Remember you are not alone. Have you found a breast cancer support group near you? I would highly recommend. These women understand and know that there’s no “back to normal”. God bless you!

Thank you so much for sharing your story with me! I realize I have not been talking to other survivors and I forget how much support is out there. It’s beyond amazing to hear that your situation is so similar to mine. I also feel grateful to be alive, and get a bit mad at myself for putting so much energy in how my breasts look. Thank you again for responding, it makes a world of difference to me! ✨

Please don’t be so hard on yourself ! You did what you thought was correct at the time . It is difficult after mastectomy and I also struggle with being single and not wanting to start any ‘new’ relationships as I feel like guys will think I’m a freak lol .

You look after you and remember you’re a strong woman who has been through a whole battle and came through it ! We are all super- women ! Those scars are there to remind you that you are amazing and fearless, don’t forget that ! Sending big hugs x

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