Patience is paramount, advocate for yourself if you feel something isn’t right, and trust in the process
My name is Laura Mckay from the UK. I am 35, have a fantastic partner, and a two-year-old son. I lost my mum to breast cancer at 15 and at 32 discovered my BRCA2 mutation. I had my son the following year (2016) and last year had my bilateral mastectomy with immediate reconstruction on the 3rd of September.
I discovered two days after surgery that my surgeon had made an error and used the wrong implants in my reconstruction surgery (I wanted rounds and he used teardrops which completely changed the outcome of my reconstruction and devastated me emotionally and physically).
Four weeks after surgery, I was sent last minute for surgery on my right boob as a seroma was leaking and the incision wasn’t healing. The skin was removed which distorted the shape and size on the right side.
Recently on Boxing Day, my scar on my left side changed colour and felt different. I saw a surgeon the next day and had to have surgery later that day to remove my left implant. The scar opened up to reveal the implant and due to the high risk of infection, the implant had to be removed. Of course, I am just gutted by what’s happened since choosing to have this surgery, but the alternative was facing a cancer diagnosis. No women in my family have survived 40, so I knew I had no other option.
Three surgeries in quick succession have been a little difficult, and my fourth operation is now scheduled for the 21st of March, right after my birthday! I’ll likely have another two additional surgeries until I’m finally ‘complete’. It’s hard to feel like myself at the moment as I’ve only one breast left and it’s so much smaller and a bit wonky compared to my natural breasts.
Trying to accept my ever changing body has been a struggle, but I try not to let it get me down but of course, I have bad days and struggle to find clothes that fit and look good. I still try to be optimistic and positive even with these bumps in the road. I changed surgeons (due to losing all trust in the previous one) and I have so much confidence in his abilities that I know it’ll all be worth it in the end.
What I’ve learned since mastectomy is that reconstruction really is a work in progress, Rome wasn’t built in a day, after all, patience is paramount, advocate for yourself if you feel something isn’t right, and trust in the process
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