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Skin Problems/Healing

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Category: TNBC Forums
Forum Name: TNBC Polls & Surveys
Forum Description: A place to ask questions and survey the community
Printed Date: Aug 04 2020 at 3:23pm
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Topic: Skin Problems/Healing
Posted By: arlatweedy
Subject: Skin Problems/Healing
Date Posted: Jul 11 2010 at 6:39pm
Hello everyone. I am 45, I was diagnosed in June 2009 as a Stage 1, IDC TNBC, 0 nodes involved.  I had a bilateral w/ immediate reconstruction followed by 4 rounds of chemo. I did this because my sister is also a TNBC.  We are both BRCA negative.

 My biggest problem has been with the healing process.  I have now had six surgeries and the scarring area's of the breasts do not want to heal.  I am quite concerned, almost to a point of wondering if its because of the implants, or what they are using to close me up.  Since learning of the cancer, I've become allergic to tape (including tegaderm) and morphine.

Does anyone have any advice? After two months, my right side has now taken a down turn and gotten red and looks to be opening back up.  I just don't understand. I know that much has to do w/being TN, but I'm looking for options.....any assistance is appreciated.  Thanks so very much.

Posted By: Debris
Date Posted: Jul 11 2010 at 7:10pm
Hello there.  Sorry I cannot give you any advice on your problems (I think I'm in the minority who have not had mastectomies).  Just wanted to say Hi, and to wish you luck.  I'm sure there are good folks on this Forum who will be able to give you advice in this respect.

4/12 Xeloda/Tykerb
2 Carboplatin
12/11 Dx IA
9 Gemzar/Taxotere Dx IBC:FEC
5 Ixempra/Sprycel
2 25 Rad
10/10 BRCA1-/2suv
6 Stg4 Grd3 many nodes no Sx/Rad. Taxol/Avastin
06/08 Dx DCIS 0/SN Rads/AIs

Posted By: arlatweedy
Date Posted: Jul 11 2010 at 7:17pm
Thank you - the very best of luck to you as well.

Posted By: hdeall
Date Posted: Jul 12 2010 at 11:24am
not sure what to say- i didn't have any trouble with the implants- except for the fact that i hate them.  but it does sound like you need to see another plastic surgeon or maybe two to see what they tell you.  never feel guilty about going for another opinion.

54 yrs, TN, Brca+, Stage 1-right side only in Nov 08, BiLateral mast. immediate reconstruction Jan 09, Chemo, Oopherectomy Dec 09, Now bi-lat lymph nodes-Mar 10,Stage IV. BiLat lymph surgery Apr10.

Posted By: SagePatientAdvocates
Date Posted: Jul 12 2010 at 11:43am
Dear arlatweedy,

I think you should see an Infectitious Disease Specialist and let that professional take a look at what is going on and perhaps order blood work. My daughter went through a period of almost a year when her body was seemingly rejecting her implants...redness around her incision.and fever. The antibiotics the IDS recommended (which was different than her plastic surgeon) finally did the trick...THe IDS specialist also suggested using the antibiotics prophylactically for awhile, which she did...and also not waiting till the infection was bad until she took the medicine but as soon as she 'felt' she was going to have symptoms she started the course of antibiotics...It was a long, stressful period...sorry

the other thing she was advised is that sometimes the infections become very severe, very quickly and may actually become life-threatening. We were told to go the emergency room for treatment. I posted about this several years ago on another message board and several women wrote me that they were actually put on an antibiotic IV in the hospital.

I hope that never happens to you but please consider seeing another professional.

all the best,


I am a BRCA1+ grandson, son and father of women affected by breast/oc-my daughter inherited mutation from me, and at 36, was dx 2004 TNBC I am a volunteer patient advocate with SAGE Patient Advocates

Posted By: bjoangtx
Date Posted: Jul 12 2010 at 1:20pm
I had a bi-lateral mastectomy 12/11/09 and had some necrotic tissue around the incision and got an infection. Had to have the expander removed 12/29/09. Took antibiotics for 2 weeks and had the expander replaced the end of January.
Like Steve said-high stress, increased depression. Second time no infection and I'm awaiting replacement in September. I also hate the expanders. Uncomfortable. I know they ran tests on the infection when they first found it to identify what kind it was and what drugs it was susceptible to, a path report on some of the infected fluid. I was sick as a dog with the infection and totally wornout from the chemo/surgery/stress of the previous 6 months.
I'm better now but the fatigue remains and even with a pretty rigorous exercise program I'm more depressed. I think with the break in treatment I have time for the feelings to catch up to me.
I don't have a lot of advice. I do what I need to do to get through the day. I made it through radiation pretty much on anger/rage.
Good luck and let us know how it works out for you.

St 2 Gr 3 2/5 nodes dx 8/9 age 56 Neoadj ACT @ x 6 @3wks bi mst. 12/09 Infect expander 12/31 remvd, replcd 1/27. 28 rads 4/10 Brkn rib 5/10 PET   6/10 NED Recon 9/17 & 12/10 Ki67 85% basal

Posted By: 123Donna
Date Posted: Jul 16 2010 at 7:45am
Hi Arlatweedy,

Welcome and glad you found us.  You and I were dx about the same time and had the same surgeries.  I did not have any problem with infection or healing.  I don't have anything to add besides what Steve and Joan mentioned.  I'd definitely get another opinion.

Wishing you the best and hope you get some relief soon.


DX IDC TNBC 6/09 age 49, Stage 1,Grade 3, 1.5cm,0/5Nodes,KI-67 48%,BRCA-,6/09bi-mx, recon, T/C X4(9/09)
11/10 Recur IM node, Gem,Carb,Iniparib 12/10,MRI NED 2/11,IMRT Radsx40,CT NED11/13,MRI NED3/15

Posted By: chloesmom
Date Posted: Jul 20 2010 at 7:43pm
hi, my Mom had the same problem and finally got a wound vac and the incision finally closed up.  My Mom, as well, is allergic to tape.  She has to use Mepitac and can be found online.


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