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MicheleS

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Reply with quote  #1 
I just found out that I had a "simple" mastectomy back in Jan.  At the time I didn't think to ask what type I'd be getting.  Now, I'm worried... What's the difference?  I can't palpate any tissue left behind...
Help!
If it's not 1 thing to worry about, It's another.
Michele

PS. I had a SNB with it and 7 nodes were taken. 2 or 3 "lit up" as sentinals and the others were nearby and "slightly" enlarged (I had just quit nursing like 2 days prior.) so he took 7.  All were neg at surg, on H&E, and on immunohistochemistry.

nosurrender

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Reply with quote  #2 
hi Michele,
A Radical Mastectomy was what they used to do in the old days. It takes the breast, lymph nodes (whether they needed to be taken or not), the pectoral muscle and part of the chest wall if necessary. It left women with a concavity as well as disabilities from the missing muscle.

A Modified or Simple mastectomy takes the breast tissue and the breast skin. It leaves the pectoral muscle in tact if there is no involvement. But they remove all the breast tissue- that includes under your arm and a little way down your rib cage.  You may or may not get a full axillary dissection. Back when I had my first cancer in 2001, even though SNB was available, my docs did a full axillary just to be on the safe side.

A skin sparing mastectomy is a simple mastectomy that leaves you with your breast skin. Think of an avocado. The shell is your breast skin. The breast surgeon scoops out all breast skin like you would take out the avocado meat from the shell. But you still have your breast skin. I had that with my second cancer and what is funny is even though I had a bilat, I still had my first lumpectomy scar intact.

So your nodes are clear??? That is wonderful!!!


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MicheleS

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Reply with quote  #3 
yeah the nodes are neg.  I'm a stage I.  Grade III. tri-neg.

I was worried because I *thought* I was getting a modified radical but when I met with the PS he told me the surgeon had done a "simple" + SNB.  So is the full LN dissection the only difference?  I just worry about other *stuff* being left behind.  The surg was 1/6 and I've healed well.
Thanks!
Michele

edited to add: I knew I was getting the SNB... just thought is was a modified radical + SNB, NOT simple + SNB... But I also knew that we were trying to leave nodes if the SNB was OK. I'm so confused...
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