I went home from the hospital following my mastectomies with drains in place to remove the build-up of fluid that is common with the procedure. My right drain came out first as it had stopped draining. My left breast (the one that had two different cancers over a twenty year period) continued to have fluid that required fluid aspiration every few days. After it seemed I was finally on the road back to being healed, my right breast abruptly released about a cup of fluid and pus (sorry to be so graphic - it was a hard experience to go through...). I was put on antibiotics and my wife stuffed the wound with gauze tape and changed the dressing every day for weeks until it healed from the inside out.
I will need additional surgery to remove large pads of flesh that were left under each arm. I am a large woman and my breast surgeon was removing only breast tissue so the excess fat and tissue under each arm will have to be removed by a plastic surgeon.
I am hoping to be healed enough to permit me to have a couple of prostheses made to take the place of my breasts so I will look more like my pre-surgery self. I hope to finally look good in my clothes again. It has been an experience for me to be flat as I have been able to go braless for the first time since third grade when I got my first bra. I remember kids popping my bra straps on the jungle gym in third grade.
I have always had large breasts. They have been the source of fun jokes and attention my entire life. Again, the question arises... do women with very large breast have a more difficult time after having mastectomies? Comments welcomed...