Friday, January 29, 2010


It's a funny thing about dogs. They sniff out healthcare problems. They are dogtors for sure. Two days ago, my dogs started sniffing my breast, trying to get under my clothes. They became agitated when they went near me, and would not leave me alone.

If you remember, I have had drainage from my left nipple almost ever since the surgery. It didn't seem to change, but my sixth sense and my dogs response to me, prompted me to call the surgeon's office. I went this morning, and she told me I had a small infection, most likely from the sutures they used. She ordered an ultrasound, which if it had shown a pocket called a seroma of fluid, she would drain it to help the healing. However, the ultrasound only showed small undrainable pockets of fluid. I am now on an antibiotic for a week, neosporin to the wound, and nursing pads to catch it all.

I go back next week for a follow-up. Until then...

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Don't Count Your Chickens Before They're Hatched

Unfortunately, the wound is still draining. In fact, it's hard to call a wound because you can't see it. However, there is still drainage...enough to stain my bra and get me aggravated. So I asked my brother the pathologist if he had any ideas why this is going on for seven weeks now, and he tells me that the breast is mostly fatty tissue and doesn't heal as quickly as other sites. It's not odd that it's taking so long. As long as there is no symptoms of infection, I'm good to go. Either way, if this continues another week, I'm calling back the surgeon.

Still goopy in Maryland

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Bleeding Has Stopped ... Keeping Fingers Crossed

It looks like the bleeding is stopping. My breast does not twinge and it's not feeling full, like it was prior to when I was seeping fluid from it. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that this is the last of it. And keeping things in perspective, one of my cancer bulletin board buddies just noted a recurrence, so I'm very very fortunate.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Sparking a Memory

The bleeding from my left breast is now occuring ever 3-4 days. It has sparked a memory when at age 26, I had a biopsy on my left breast which resulted in a hematoma that was painful and had to be drained every week for 8 weeks. This is really similar to that, except there is still a small opening by my nipple and excess fluid can drain out on its own = no pain and faster healing.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Another Small Drama

Good thing the surgeon told me of some possible issues that may come up once the healing process begins. Yesterday, my family and I were out to lunch (in the literal way...big smile), and I felt wet on my sweater, but wasn't quite sure what it was. When I got into the car, I quickly looked underneath, but did not see anything.

When I got home, I took off my sweater and 1/2 my turtleneck shirt was decorated with blood and the left cup of my bra was totally soaked in it. Luckily, I remembered the surgeon telling me that it could be possible that you will see a pool of blood one day without any warning. This is because the body will not allow any empty space and when tissue is removed, the body fills it with its natural fluids during the healing process. The blood burst I got was a result of the body tissue filling in and the pool of fluid being forced out of its space. All good news ultimately...but imagine if I did not have warning on this...

Thursday, January 7, 2010

I'm Starting to "Look" Normal Again

For a while, my breast was looking like a Picasso print. Finally, the steri-strips peeled off, the incision site along the side of my nipple and areola look normal again. I can actually look at my mini-me breast and it looks like a part of my body again.

Not sure if I've addressed this yet, but my cancer breast is now quite a bit smaller than my other breast. It really bothered me when I realized how much tissue had been removed from the cancer breast resulting in its new size, but then again, I was grateful to have a breast at all.

With a bra on, it appears normal. Couple that with my usual fashion style of twin set sweaters, the size difference can definitely be hidden; at least, from my perception.