What Is The Recovery Time For Breast Cancer Surgery?

The recovery time for breast cancer surgery depends on the type of surgery the patient has undergone. There are various surgeries in order to cure breast cancer. They include-

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Lumpectomy: The most initial form of breast cancer surgery can be lumpectomy. This is an outpatient procedure and requires around 7 to 14 days for complete recovery.

Breast Removal Surgery: Mastectomy is basically the breast removal surgery, which may require the patient to stay in the hospital for a day or two for observation. The complete recovery time for mastectomy can take around one to three weeks of time.

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Re-Excision: Re-excision is an outpatient breast cancer surgery procedure that may be done after lumpectomy in order to ensure clear margins. It must be noted that not every patient may require re-excision surgery. The recovery duration for re-excision may involve around three to seven days.

Breast Reconstruction: Breast reconstruction is done after mastectomy in order to shape up the breast so removed. The process of breast reconstruction has a variety of types and thus, the recovery time varies in accordance to the type of breast reconstruction surgery the patient has to undergo. If the patient would require radiation treatments reconstruction may be delayed.

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What Is The Recovery Time For Breast Cancer Surgery?

What is the Difference between Lumpectomy and Mastectomy?

Lumpectomy and mastectomy are both forms of treatment for breast cancer. It should be understood that lumpectomy is just an outpatient procedure. It involves only the removal of the tumor in the breast which is affected by cancer. Sometimes few lymph nodes may be removed which may be suspected to be affected by cancer. The patient may go home at the same day of the surgery. On the contrary mastectomy is a rather major surgery, which involves removal of the entire breast affected by the cancer. Mastectomy may be carried out in case of the failure of lumpectomy or when the cancerous tumor gets large enough that lumpectomy alone would not suffice. The patient will have to stay in the hospital for a day or two after the surgery for observational purpose. Mastectomy requires a longer duration of time for recovery than lumpectomy.

Are Exercises Beneficial In The Healing Process After The Breast Cancer Surgery?

Once the patient recovers from the breast cancer surgery procedure, the doctor may recommend some stretching exercises that may be beneficial to regulate and gain mobility. It is important to talk to the surgeon before starting with the exercises.

Arm Lift Exercises: Arms lifts are seen to be beneficial after the breast cancer surgery. While standing or sitting on the edge of the chair, both of the arms may be lifted over the head with elbows close to the ears. The position should be held for five counts and then repeated.

Arm Swing Exercises: Arm swings are another form of exercise helping in mobility. As the patient stands straight, she may swing both arms forward and backward from the shoulder like a pendulum keeping the elbow straight.

Wall Climbing Exercises: Wall climbing may be recommended for patients at times. In this, the patient has to stand facing the wall with hands on the wall. The fingertips of both the hands may be used to climb up the wall until the arms are stretched over the head. Again, the patient has to climb the fingers down the wall.

Is Follow-Up Necessary After Recovering From The Breast Cancer Surgery?

Regular follow-ups to the doctor is equally important and is a part of the breast cancer treatment. The regular visits will ensure that the cancer do not relapse again. The checkups generally include tests and investigation of the chest, underarm and neck. Appointments will be given by the doctor and it is important to be present at the given dates for consultation.

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Pramod Kerkar

Written, Edited or Reviewed By:

, MD,FFARCSI

Pain Assist Inc.

Last Modified On: March 16, 2018

This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer

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