Understanding Your Breast Procedure

At MSA, we understand the worry and anxiety that comes with undergoing a breast procedure. While every surgery is different, one thing is for sure – our experienced breast and plastic surgeon team will be with you every step of the way.

Our surgeons perform a variety of breast procedures such as biopsies, lumpectomies, and mastectomies, as well as breast reconstruction. We want you to know that our team of health professionals will put your needs first and make it a priority to thoroughly explain your options to ensure you are comfortable with your decisions.

Before any procedure, we always take time to meet with our patients and educate them on what’s to come before, during, and after surgery. Oftentimes, knowing this information can ease your stress. Take a minute and read on to learn what you can expect for your upcoming breast procedure, as well as a few helpful tips for recovery.

Before Breast Surgery

Before your surgery, we’ll sit down to review your medical history and discuss your operation as well as your wishes regarding the procedure. Everyone has different wishes and our goal is to be accommodating to your specific needs. This is the time to ask questions!

To help prep for surgery, we’ll ask that you refrain from eating or drinking for 8-12 hours prior to your procedure, and make an arrangement for someone to take you home. It’s important to plan for assistance beforehand because you will likely be sore and uncomfortable the hours and days following your procedure. Whether it’s a friend or family member, having someone to offer a helping hand will take a huge weight off your shoulders and allow you to get the rest you need for a speedy and healthy recovery.

After Breast Surgery

Depending upon your breast procedure, recovery varies from person to person. If you’ve undergone a biopsy, ice and anti-inflammatory medication will help tremendously with any pain or discomfort.

For a lumpectomy or mastectomy, you’ll be wheeled into a recovery room where your vital signs will be checked and monitored. The level of procedure, along with a number of other factors, will determine when you’re able to be released from the hospital. For biopsies, and some lumpectomies, staying in the hospital is not required, but a more complicated procedure may require you to stay a few extra days to ensure your body is healing properly and you feel comfortable enough to head home.

Directly following a breast procedure, you’ll have a dressing over your surgery site, and a possible drain tube depending upon the procedure. You can expect some pain and discomfort, numbness, and a pinching sensation under your arm is not uncommon.

To ease these symptoms, you’ll be given prescriptions for pain medications and possible antibiotics. We also make sure to send you home with detailed at-home instructions so you’re educated and aware of how to take care of your body following the procedure. These instructions will include notes such as:

  • How to properly care for your incision and drains
  • What to look for if you suspect an infection arises
  • Timing on when to resume wearing a bra or prosthesis
  • Activities to avoid for the next few weeks

We always make sure to schedule a follow-up appointment within a week or two of your procedure to ensure everything is healing and recovery is going smoothly. This meeting is a great time to ask your surgeon questions or address any concerns you may have.

Helpful Tips Following a Breast Procedure

  • Get plenty of rest and relaxation! This is a great time to get out all the pillows, break out your favorite movie, and get comfy. Your recovery will go much smoother if you take time to rest.
  • Prepare a rest area beforehand. Make sure your phone, pillows, books, tv remote, and anything else needed to keep you comfortable are within reach. This makes taking time to relax that much easier.
  • Stay hydrated! Drinking water is important for both before surgery and the healing process.
  • Stock up on light, healthy foods. Before heading to your surgery, make sure your kitchen is stocked with healthy, easy-to-prepare meals. This reduces the work for you and helps give your body the energy it needs to heal.
  • Don’t be afraid to ask for help from family and friends. Make a list of things you’re unable to do and let them handle it. You’ll be busy recovering and watching that favorite movie of yours anyway!
  • Avoid heavy lifting for a few weeks and don’t drive until you’ve finished certain pain medications.

We hope these tips help you feel more comfortable and prepared for your upcoming surgery. Undergoing a breast procedure may seem scary but rest assured, our team is here for you before, during, and after!

At MSA, we work around the clock to offer you the best service and care. Every breast procedure experience is different; however, we want our patients to know we take great pride in meeting their wishes and helping them feel confident and comfortable in their own skin. If you’re looking to undergo a breast procedure or you have questions on breast surgeries in general, we would be happy to meet with you. To schedule a consultation or meet with one of our healthcare members, call us at 231-739-9461.