Three months after my DIEP Flap Reconstruction Surgery it was time for my nipple reconstruction. Because of where my cancer was located, I could not have nipple sparing surgery. I opted to remove the nipple and areolas for both breasts to look the same on both sides.
My husband, Juan, came with me once again into the room. I am sure he didn’t want to witness this–but he did!
I had taken my pain medication and a Xanax to get through this. I put on the dreaded pink paper top again. Dr. Fallucco and Alana, his PA, came in. He numbed my breasts, which honestly are still numb. They left to allow the medication to work. It was very cold in the room.
A little while later they returned. I was asked to stand so Dr. Fallucco could measure and eyeball where he would make the incisions. Once again, that purple pen marked the areas.
A drape was placed over my left reconstructed breast. The incisions were made. A nipple was formed from my own skin. He sewed me up and moved to the right side. He and Alana were so calm. Each breast took about 15 minutes.
I was able to peek at my new nipples before the little plastic protectors were taped on. I was awed at the process. Juan kept saying how amazing they looked!
Dr. Fallucco explained that they were swollen now, but would settle down in a few weeks when the stitches dissolved and they begin to heal. I was instructed to not bathe them for 48 hours. After that, I remove the dressings for a shower, but place the dressings back on afterwards for 2 weeks.
I am very pleased with my decision for this procedure. It is making me feel better about my appearance–I have to say even better than before all my surgeries! It is a small consolation for having beat breast cancer.
I would love to have a discussion about your process, fears, questions. I will be very candid in my answers.
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