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Breast Necrosis Photos

13 Feb

Below you will find photos of what breast necrosis looks like. These are EXTREMELY graphic photos. This post is for MATURE VIEWERS ONLY!!

I am putting these photos up, not for shock value or to evoke pity. I am posting these images of breast necrosis so that when another woman has this happen to her, she will be able to look at the photos and evaluate for herself if she just has really bad bruising or if her tissue is necrotic.

I have said SO many times before that when I was going though this I did not have ANY pictorial references. I didn’t know what to look for. Now YOU, dear reader, do. If you are unfortunate enough to be reading this, searching for answers, please contact me at boobcast (at) gmail.com if you have ANY questions at all.

During the period you see below, I felt so very alone because I couldn’t find anything to compare myself to. I was also sheltering my husband and my family from what was going on. So I WAS alone. YOU don’t have to be.

The first photo (below) is approximately a week after surgery. Most of what you see is bruising. However the black spots are necrotic tissue.

The next photo you will see is closer shot. In this second photo you can see the difference between the bruising and the necrotic tissue. Here you can see the difference in the texture of the skin where it has really started to die.

This next photo is blurry and I’ll ask your forgiveness for that. You can see where a hole has opened up in the dead tissue.

There is a process called debriding where dead tissue is cut away. It doesn’t hurt because the tissue has died and has no nerves. It’s just rather horrifying knowing that part of your body has died and is being cut away. They don’t put you to sleep or anything. They just cut it off with surgical scissors. The completely black area used to be my nipple. That is was totally necrotic tissue looks like.

The yellow tissue is, as you may have already suspected, breast fat.

A photo of my other necrotic nipple and areolae:

Finally, a VERY graphic closeup of one of my breasts after the debriding:

 

152 responses to “Breast Necrosis Photos

  1. darkfairymomma

    February 13, 2010 at 11:06 pm

    i can’t even imagine going through that, especially trying to keep it to myself. i admire your courage to get this information out to the public.

     
    • Herbwoman

      February 13, 2010 at 11:11 pm

      Thank you for your support. It means a great deal. I was actually really scared to put these up. My main fear is that WordPress.com will come along and make me take them down or completely remove my blog for TOS violations.
      Check back tomorrow for a happier post :-) I’m putting up post reconstruction photos to show women what a latissimus flap reconstruction looks like.

       
      • Jenny McAhren

        June 26, 2010 at 1:33 pm

        I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart for these pictures and hope it’s mostly behind you. Please post a reply to let us know how you are. After searching on the Internet to find information for my black spots, I found your pics. Following bilateral mastectomy in May 2009, I’ve finally gotten nipple replacement and after three weeks have a couple of black spots and also a white spot. My routine appointment with PS is three days from now, so am anxious to see what he says. I have every confidence in my PS, but am concerned after reading about necrosis. Thank you again, Herbwoman; your and other people’s postings to this site have helped me and probably thousands of others.. Bless You!

         
      • Sharon

        July 30, 2010 at 8:50 am

        Thank you for sharing your story and photos. I had surgery three weeks ago and my surgeon just removed a patch of skin on my areola below my nipple. I am concerned about how it will heal and if I will now be deformed. He said he had a difficult time with this breast during surgery (augmentation and masteoplexy). So I am assuming this is a result of the trauma from the surgery. It amazed me how there are nearly no photos of this on-line, yet plenty of pictures of before and after results for plastic surgery. Of course info regarding complications is not readily available, nor was this discussed with me before my surgery. Thanks once again for sharing your story. I hope you are healed and the reconstruction has gone well.

         
      • Maria_Myrback

        August 12, 2010 at 4:16 pm

        Sharon;

        I’m sorry to hear that you’ve already had to go through some debridement. The skin itself will re-grow but it takes time. As long as the underlying breast structure is intact, you shouldn’t have to worry about deformities. If it doesn’t heal correctly, there are skin grafting techniques that can be used to repair the area. I’m glad that what I’ve been through could be of some help. That’s why I put the pics up…so that women like yourself would have a resource.
        And I’m doing well now. Thank you for asking. I just have tattooing left and all the reconstruction will be finished.

         
      • hopeful

        April 6, 2012 at 5:57 am

        My heart goes out to you. I searched the internet a lot for breast abscess photos and got none, and then suddenly i landed on this page. You are one extremely courageous and brave woman!
        I went through breast necrosis after delivering my baby. Engorgement happened when the baby did not want to drink milk and before i knew it I had milk fever and within 1 day, a severe breast abcess. Nothing absolutely nothing from my clothes, and no bra would fit me, my left breast became the size of a football, severely swollen, red, angry purple streaks, and bursting with pus. My surgeon, immediately did a drainage and I thought the worst was over. But, I was so wrong, I spent the next 8 weeks in utter helplessness… each day the doctor would cut out necrotic tissues, inject me with some medicines and bandage me, all this while, without any anaesthesia and I used to cry with pain. The pictures you have posted are almost close to what I had. Now, 8 months post the last bandaging, my left breast is beginning to soften. The scars are still red, raised and angry.. but the areas which were numb and had become hard are now slowly coming back to life. What bothers me is that the size has reduced so much, it is about half of my other side and that gets me so self conscious! :(
        If any new mothers are reading this, please be aware that engorgement of breast can lead to breast necrosis so be careful to not let engorgement happen.
        I feel thankful that though my breast abscesses ( i got 3 of them at once, 3 big gaping holes in my left breast) made my breast look like a sickening, spoilt, discoloured peice of flesh, I have now recovered slowly, I use packs of milk and cream everyday and the burnt-look and dark patches are now gone. And it looks like a breast now, which i was afraid it would never look.
        Thank you for posting your story. I feel much better knowing I am not alone in this.
        Much Love!

         
  2. Del

    March 7, 2010 at 10:59 pm

    Hi there,

    I didn’t ever think I’d see necrotic (?) breast tissue online, but there it was. You are extremely brave to post this, and I thank you on behalf of all women who are put through such horrific medcal experiences and usually “tough them out” all on their own. I know I did.

    I had implants removed and asked my physician to make my breasts as small as she could. I said that if I never had to wear a bra again, that would suit me just fine. (I had had two breast reductions.. the implants were merely to try to give my breasts a better shape).

    My partner was away, flying overseas. My surgeon was about 500 miles away.. too far for me to drive in my medical state.. too far for me to even travel in such condiion. (Having your body in such a state is a huge shock to your system). It is infection, and part of you is tissue dying.

    When my nipple started to turn black, I immediately called the plastic surgeon’s office, only to be told it was normal. “No”, I said, “this is liver colored, and something is definitely wrong.” She tried to assure me it was normal, but ended by saying even if it wasn’t normal, there was nothing could be done at that point.

    It quickly went from bad to worse, and I ended up having to go to my local hospital to have Dr X debride the dead, crusty black stuff that used to be my nipples and areolae.

    I ended up losing my entire left nipple and areola, and half of my right npple and areola. I went through weeks of breast abscesses, debriding the black crusty stuff etc. It was truly sickening. I, too, took pictures but I don’t know if I have the guts to post them.

    If I might ask, how are you making out these days? I see its not even a moth, so I hope and pray that the infection has stopped and you might be starting to heal?

    If you don’t want to reply, I’ll certainly respect your wishes. It took amazing strength for you to share such a personally agonizing experience and I truly appreciate it. It does help to know one is not alone. And if it helps you any, I eventually ended up with breasts that look “passable”.

    D

     
    • Herbwoman

      March 14, 2010 at 5:32 pm

      Del;

      I’m SO sorry you had to go through this. It’s just horrifying beyond words to see such things happen to ourselves.
      I’m doing much better these days. I had a bilateral latissimus flap breast reconstruction with one of the top reconstruction surgeons in the U.S in April of 2009. I have the mounds and will probably have nipple reconstruction early this summer.

      I truly understand your reluctance to post your personal photographs. It’s an extraordinarily difficult thing to deal with and emotions stay raw for a very long time. Please don’t feel that you HAVE to post your own photos because someone else did. Give yourself time to heal both physically AND emotionally.

      Personally, I was terrified when I did it. Mostly I was afraid that the photos would be removed for being adult content. But I knew that being able to have a visual reference would be able to help SO many women. Really it took me about a year before I could actually bring myself to post those photos. They were originally taken in November of 2007.

      Please keep in touch and let me know how you’re doing.

       
      • I. Benor

        December 7, 2011 at 9:11 am

        I had my surgery 20 years ago and I have suffered in silence. I had fat necrosis and lost almost everything on one side and half of it on the other. To clean it, they had to dig a centimeter and a half deep. I had to wear bandages and gauze under my clothes for over 6 months. I was so ashamed because it was a reduction and I chose to have it. My doctor said it had NEVER happened in all the years he had been doing the surgery. That made it even worse. I had no one to turn to, and back then there was no internet. Although it’s been 20 years, it is such a comfort to hear from others that went through this. My breasts are forever scarred. Some areas are completely numb.

         
    • Edwin Daniel

      November 20, 2012 at 1:44 am

      Sory for what happened to you but dont worry because god is with you and every thing will be okay!tanx

       
  3. janet taylor

    March 9, 2010 at 4:27 pm

    you poor thing, to have to keep this problem to yourself must have been devastating, l have necorosis from having bilateral diep reconstruction, mine is only minor but l was worried when l saw my plastic surgeon he said give it a little time to settle and cream it well and massage which l have done morning and night also using bio oil to help scar tissue, l had my recon in nov 2009 and still trying to heal, it seems never ending but as finally settled down ‘(hopefully)
    My plastic surgeon is exerlent, and explained that he will excise the necrosis if it is no better, it feels very unpleasant, but l dont think l would like to be awake for this you must be very brave, after looking at your photos l have not seen anything as bad as yours, l do not mean that to be disrespectful,
    My surgeon seems to be sympathic to how l feel about it which is a good start,
    l have been looking around the internet to see what l could find out about necrosis and your blog was just what l was looking for, l do wish you a good recovery and admire your inspiration and courage and to show your photos will help reasure others. good luck.

     
  4. lulupanache

    March 10, 2010 at 4:44 pm

    hi herbwomen, l admire you courage it must be deverstating for you, l have necrosis but l also have problems with my blood which has not helped, l have an exerlent surgeon who as taken me on as his patient & as been with me so far, he as told me to let it settle but as already said he will be prepared to excise, after looking at you blog and pictures it as made my mind up for me, but there is no way l want to be a wake, you are one very brave lady and l do wish you good recovery and admire your inspiration, l have been looking round the webb to find out more about necrosis and l will say this is just what l wanted to find. It is very sad for you l will follow your blog to see how you get on, l see my plastic surgeon in April and without a doubt l want it removed after reading your story, l wish you all the best

     
  5. janelle

    April 4, 2010 at 7:07 am

    I just wanted to give you a virtual hug for facing something so horrific on your own, and thank you for your courage in getting the information out there. I haven’t been through anything this traumatic, but I know that when you know there’s something medically wrong with you and you are starting to realize how long your doctors have been out of med school and how unlikely it is that they specialize in exactly what you’ve got going on, so you go to the internet to try to at least have some education or idea what the possibilities are, any information at all can be such a relief. But like you said, somebody’s got to put the information out there, and nobody has been talking about this. Thank you for helping others through a similar trauma.

     
  6. lulupanache

    April 8, 2010 at 5:34 am

    just wondering how you were getting on with your necrosis, l see my specalist 31 april and cannopt wait to get this removed, l think you could open you own webb page on this discussion as l said before you have give a lot of detail more than the meds and l am prpared to put my photots on to as l have got my photos fromthe very start which was mastectomy, that was a nasty scar and then bilaterial diep reconstruction pictures of progress, my one bust has now healed after 5 months but still have horrible creases and indents, go for it, do a webb page
    lulu

     
  7. kitkat

    April 21, 2010 at 8:36 pm

    thanks so much for sharing your experience as i have started with what looks like necrosis of my breast today. Its very black and looks bruised same as your first picture. I am going to see my doctor first thing now so thankyou so much for posting these pictures as without this reference i would possibly have left it too see what happened mostly through embarrassment but i will definatly go and get it looked at tmoro am. Thankyou. Hope your better now after your experience. Take care lotsa lv Xx

     
    • FledgelingSkeptic

      April 21, 2010 at 10:18 pm

      Kit;

      I know how scary it can be. Please email me and let me know how it turns out. I’ll be hoping for bruising. If it turns out otherwise, I’m here to talk. Just let me know.

       
  8. Marie

    May 3, 2010 at 2:36 pm

    I had a BR on 4/19. My right nipple is healing wonderfully, but the left nipple is having some issues. The entire nipple is like one big scab. I’m very confused because I called my Dr’s office 2 days after the surgery and her PA told me that the discoloration is perfectly normal and it’s just due to trauma from the surgery. Then when I went in for the followup the PA said the same thing, nothing to worry about but when the Dr came in, she was concerned. I’m not having any issues outside of the nipple, and there are small pieces that have peeled off and revealed pink underneath. Does this sound at all like what you went through? I do still have feeling in the nipple. But like I said, it looks and feels like a scab. Thanks for your input. Nice to talk to someone who has been through it and it’s impossible to find anything useful about this online.

     
    • FledgelingSkeptic

      May 3, 2010 at 3:47 pm

      Marie;

      The first thing to do is to take a few deep breasts..uhm, breaths ;-)

      Scabbing is perfectly normal. Right now the scabs are protecting new skin. What you describe doesn’t sound like I went through. Necrosis is not a scab. Necrosis is tissue death. The skin and fat itself turns black and hardens. It sounds like you’re doing alright and healing on one side is just a little bit slower. Did your Doc say why she was concerned when she saw you this last time?

      What happened in my case is that I had extremely deep bruising. Look at the second photo here: http://boobcast.net/2010/02/13/breast-necrosis-photos/ See how some of the dark skin has a slightly different texture? That was turning necrotic. If you look closely you can see the difference between deep bruising and dying tissue.

      My heart goes out to you. I know you’re worried right now. I’m just hoping that none of your breast tissue looks like that.

      Please keep in touch and let me know how things go.

       
  9. Pammygirl

    May 26, 2010 at 10:47 pm

    I have been going through the exact same thing since January 2010, and I am still in the reconstruction process. I honestly don’t think your pictures are as horrific as mine are so please don’t worry that they were too graphic, I think they were what we needed because I started feeling like, what’s wrong with me??? Everyone around me who had breat reductions, were fine. I’ve been so depressed and worried that I will never get past this. I actually found your blog because I was worrying that my breast tissues are dying again. I am praying that the softness (which was unfamiliar to me and got me worrying) is just that the swelling has finally gone down and that I’m finally healing but after several months of “Hell” it was so unbelievable that a change could actually be for the best.

    I just want to say thank you–ALL–for sharing. You have all touched my heart so much tonight that I am in tears. I am sorry that you all went through this, but it’s so much better to talk to people who understands and not just oowwing and awwing over your wounds. I know my family is concerned but only you guys understand.

     
    • Marie

      June 8, 2010 at 10:48 am

      Hey all!

      Well, I am now 7 weeks out and FINALLY noticing some signs of healing. I’m getting to go to the Surgeon every 2 weeks instead of every week, which is wonderful because it’s a 60 mile drive!

      I am basically on what she called “the final stages of healing”, which will still take a couple of months. However, I am definitely noticing some new skin. I can’t describe how relieved I was to find online how many options there are for reconstruction of the nipple/aereola.

      Anyone who is going through this, there is light at the end of that tunnel. It has been a horrifying experience. My husband just saw it for the first time since it happened and wished he hadn’t decided to look … lol. I wish so badly there was more information for women out there about this issue. I’m thinking we should all ban together and start a website!!!

      Thank you again Boobcast for sharing your experience!

       
      • C-Squared

        January 10, 2011 at 9:20 pm

        Marie,

        Your post has helped me so much! I just had a breast reduction 2 wks ago and I’m experiencing the same problem with my right nipple, but my doctor told me not worry. I just couldn’t understand why one breast was healing so perfectly.

        Herbwoman, I truly appreciate your bravery for posting this blog. I nearly scared myself to death thinking I had breast necrosis because I could never find any pictures. I truly hope that you are doing well!

         
      • Claudia

        March 17, 2012 at 5:41 pm

        Marie
        I am 12 days post op and am having the same issue as you. My right nipple is black, like a burn but a couple of days ago some peeling began. The doc assures me it is not necrosis, that blood is flowing (she even pricked it and it bled) but it looks awful and scary. How long did it take for this black skin to fall off and new skin reappear? I have a very meticulous ps and i have been seing her every other day since having the surgery so she has been following me very closely. But i want to know if your nipple ended up looking normal after all was said and done.

        Thank you all so much for sharing.

        Claudia

         
    • Deb

      August 9, 2011 at 7:07 pm

      Pam, can you tell me how things turned out for you? When new skin grew back, how bad was the scaring and discoloration. My pictures are pretty horrific. I take them weekly.

       
  10. Erin

    June 11, 2010 at 1:35 am

    Okay wow. I have been searching for 2 days now to get a better idea of what necrotic tissue looked like on the breast. I am so sorry that happened to you. I cried all day today knowing I am probably next. But I am glad that you had the courage to put these pictures up. You cannot find good information for comparison anywhere. I would like to know how you are doing.
    I had a breast lift last Friday and I have all sensation in my nipples and areola with no discoloration. I noticed a bubble filled sac of fluid last night on my bruised area below the areola. I was very worried about it and I called the doctor and when he saw me he told me that the tissue could die or that it probably would die. He has had me on an aspirin a day to promote thinning of the blood to get better circulation to the capillaries in that area. He now has me on another antibiotic to prevent infection and Plavix, which is a prescription blood thinner. He said that he would do what he could for me and that we would get through this. I am glad that my doctor sounds more encouraging than some others I have read about online. He even suggested Hyperbaric Oxygen treatments to get more oxygen to the area. However on my modest income, I won’t be able to afford them. About $1,200 a treatment and he recommended 6.
    So I suppose we will see how well all of this works. I am about a week out of surgery and had my drain tubes taken out Monday. I will have my sutures removed this coming Monday (14th). Thank you again. I felt alone too.

     
    • FledgelingSkeptic

      June 11, 2010 at 2:49 am

      Erin;

      I am SO very sorry you are going through this. Remember that it is only temporary and you WILL heal.

      It sounds like your doctor has things well in hand though. He sounds much more competent than the butcher who did my initial lift and augmentation surgery.

      It is EXCELLENT news that you have all feeling in your nipples and areolae. Try to keep focused on the positive in the coming weeks. It could get really rough.

      I hope that you have a good support system at home. If there isn’t anyone you can talk to there, you can always email me. I’m happy to listen and offer support.

      Thank you for asking about me. I had reconstruction done in April of last year. A month ago on Monday I had nipple reconstruction and in mid August I get areolae tattoing and I will finally be done. Then, this fall, i will start writing the book.

      As for not finding good information about breast necrosis, when I was going through what you see in the photos, there was absolutely nothing. That’s why I write http://boobcast.net. It’s a resource for people like us who are afraid that we are necrosis. While I’m very sorry you’re having to deal with this, I am SO glad that what I went through can do some good.

      Take care of yourself and let me know how you are doing. Don’t be surprised if I email you again in a few weeks to see how you are :-)

      ~Maria~

       
  11. patricia pryde

    July 25, 2010 at 10:39 am

    Dear Maria you are so brave to put the pictures up…I have just read your story in issue 29 of Real People and you have coped brilliantly and have a wonderful partner by your side. I had a breast reduction in Aug 2008 and was told all the horrifying things that could go wrong including the breast tissue turning necrotic and losing my nipples. But like you I was determined to go through with it. But unlike you (luckily for me) everything went beautifully. I recovered really well and have feeling again in both nipples (albeit slightly more sensitive). my scars can barely be seen and my shoulders and back no longer have pain. I was lucky to get my operation on the NHS but I had to wait three years for it and lose quite a bit of weight first. I think you are such a brave lady and I hope your health continues to be good in the future. Thankyou so much for sharing your story.

     
  12. Regina Maisch

    July 29, 2010 at 1:04 pm

    I was looking for pictures of this. Thank you very much for sharing with us everything! I am very sorry you had to go through something so tramatic! I am thinking of having a breast lift w/augmention surgery. I am trying to really weigh out the pros and cons before I take the giant leap! Your photos have been a definate eye opener. Can i ask if you are a smoker? In all my consultaions, each Doctor has requested no smoking prior to and during recovery. The concern is the restriction of blood flow, caused by smoking, that could lead to Necrosis.

     
    • Maria_Myrback

      July 29, 2010 at 4:31 pm

      Regina;

      I’m glad you’re doing your research. No, I am not a smoker. I never have been. I was perfectly healthy before the initial surgery according to my pre-surgical check-up.

      As far as doing an augmentation and lift, If the PS wants to do an anchor lift, I would HIGHLY advise to do these as separate procedures. When you do an augment and lift, the PS is making the body of the breast smaller and then cramming in a big water balloon to make it bigger. That puts stress on the breast tissue and the reduced circulation from the pressure of the implant can contribute to breast necrosis.

      Find out if any of the surgeons you spoke to have alternatives to an anchor lift. Since you’ve had multiple consults, I’m sure you know that entails complete nipple and areolae removal. And PLEASE, do yourself a favor: Make sure the surgeon you choose is board certified. Also, just as important, PLEASE don’t settle for the cheapest. Find out from their references who the best PS is. And as always, if you have any more questions, don’t hesitate to email me.

       
      • Kyla A

        November 13, 2012 at 12:42 pm

        Oh How I wish I would have even known to look for this before surgery. I am not a smoker, NEVER have been. Had a lift and implants Oct 22, 2012. One did great- left side. Right side had other plans. Dr saw me the day after surgery and said everything was fine. I had no drains. Three days later I called the office becuase the area was still so black. And He wanted to see me. It had necrosis. He opened up the stitches under my breast and spread it apart (ouch!)- That was a Friday evening. On Monday- He saw me back in his office- No better- cut open the front stitches and by the nipple. I HAVE OPEN FLESH. He has put creams and gels on me. He saw me in his office everyday even a day he was closed. He drained the implant to take pressure off. He told me he would do surgery to repair the damage last week- then put me off, this week- now has put me off. He now wants to do surgery in 5-6 weeks- said we would in two weeks but he is moving offices so he can’t. I have to go from Oct to Dec with Necrosis and open flesh! I’m an emotionally wreck. I was only supposed to miss two days of work and I’ve missed 3 weeks. My mother says I should sue. I just need this behind me. I’m so glad everyone has posted their own stories- I had a hard time finding anything on google.

         
  13. Deb Culver

    November 5, 2010 at 1:31 pm

    I had a biopsy Sept 14,2010 (one of four this year I might add) and the puncture area turn nicrotic. Yesterday 11-4-10 the “scab” fell off. There is now an angry looking area (looks like and ulcer). Is this a bad sign? I am supposed to have surgery on this breast 11-12-10 ( I know my surgeon will not proceed if she doesnot like the look of this area. this all started with an inverted nipple and I have multiple complex masses in this breast. For this reason I have elected surgery as opposed to multiple biopsy. I know there is something not right due to the inversion…would you please comment?

     
    • Maria_Myrback

      November 7, 2010 at 12:41 pm

      Deb;

      I’m so sorry you are going through this. The first thing is, I am not a doctor or a nurse. My personal experiences don’t make me knowledgeable enough to give medical advice. Your best bet is always to talk to your doctor. That being said, if the area is not blackened or deeply bruised with a glossy or plasticine appearance to the skin, it sounds like it might just be slow to heal. “Angry” implies redness and heat. If that is correct, you might have a possible infection brewing. That’s even more of a reason to see your doctor. The last thing you need is for any possible infection to go septic (systemic).
      If you compare your wound with my necrosis photos you can see the progression of the necrosis from deep bruising to tissue death to what debrided tissue looks like.. If your wound matches any of that, you should see your doctor immediately.
      I hope things all work out for you. Let me know how it goes.

       
  14. Margaret

    December 1, 2010 at 9:41 am

    Hi, thank you for that -I am a breast cancer survivor of 10 years -had a recon which slowly got hard and red and looked as if it was pre necrotic.(Iam a nurse -we often worry more that those not in the role!!) Anyway, the plastic surg. took all of that away 10days back and there are two tiny black bitsnext to the wound area, which were almost black before he operated. I had been worrying about these, but seeing your pic and your history puts it into perspective for me -and I wont worry now. Im seeing him soon and maybe he will remove them. Best of luck and quick recovery.

     
  15. Bonnie

    January 6, 2011 at 3:31 am

    Dearest Maria: I can’t imagine the devastation and loneliness you must have felt experiencing this on your own. My heart and mind feel nothing but compassion and regret that you had to live this. I am so proud of your strength and courage to help other people such as myself. After breast reduction surgery one week ago my right nipple is black with thin patched coming off and exposing pink skin underneath. I am followingup with my plastic surgeon in the morning but would appreciate knowing how long it will take my right nipple to recover. I have taken aspirin about ten minutes ago in an effort to start thinning my blood and improving circulation to my right nipple. I would like to know what herbs and vitamins help breast health and circulation. When I was 18 yo I had breast silicone implants. Less than one year later the one in my right breast broke. They were both removed. My PS said he saw a lot of scar tissue in my right breast during my surgery. He warned before surgery this may be a complication. Now I am in the dilema of my right nipple struggling to survive. My prayers are for your complete recovery. I am sending you loads of love.

     
    • Maria_Myrback

      January 6, 2011 at 8:19 am

      Bonnie;

      I’m so terribly sorry to hear that you have to go through this. Thank you for your kind words. Those photos are from three years ago and I have since had latissimus flap breast reconstruction, nipple reconstruction and areolae tattooing. I’m just getting ready to have the tattoos touched up in a couple weeks and then I’ll be done. But let’s focus on you. If you have fresh skin underneath the scabbing, you should be just fine. Pink skin underneath is always a good sign. Follow the advice of your plastic surgeon. Asperin may thin the blood too much and not get the tissues the nutrients they need to heal. Your best bet is to eat a healthy diet and follow your PS’s instructions.
      I understand why you had to have the reduction. Though I have seen that necrosis is a much more common complication with that type of breast surgery than any other.
      Take care of yourself. Be kind and gentle with your mind and body. I know what kind of shock it is to go through this and even if you’re not feeling it right now, it’s a pretty emotional situation. Keep in touch with me and let me know how things go.

       
  16. Bonnie

    January 6, 2011 at 3:38 am

    Dear Maria, I forgot to mention I am now 49yo and suffered for almost ten years with I cup size breasts. In an affort to save negative effects on my neck and upper back I took the risks of not being able to keep my original nipple. Much love and great healing to you

     
  17. Samantha

    March 17, 2011 at 4:44 pm

    Hi, Ladies I am so sorry to see what you are going through, I too had Breast reduction surgery in February 2010 and my breast looks similiar to those photos, almost like a shark attack victim…Please advise how all of yours turned out as I am so sad and it is getting worse!

     
    • Maria_Myrback

      March 17, 2011 at 4:55 pm

      Hi;

      I am so very sorry to hear about what is happening to you. I know how traumatic it is. My Twins are doing very well. I ended up having a bilateral latissimus flap breast reconstruction that was extremely successful followed by equally successful nipple reconstruction. I actually have a video of my nipple reconstruction available on the site. Since I survived this, I’ve always made myself available for people who are going through it. So please feel free to email me privately if you want to talk. I’ve even spoken on the phone with a few women.

      You are NOT alone.

       
  18. Janny Koster

    March 26, 2011 at 6:42 am

    Dear Maria

    I am 51 I had a reduction 3 weeks ago and last week I lost my nipple and areola due to necrosis. I wanted to thank you for putting the pics on your blog. I felt so very very alone with this, like you protecting my children and bf. Reading what you wrote and seeing the pics, I now really KNOW I am not the only one.
    Thank you

     
    • Maria_Myrback

      March 27, 2011 at 11:01 am

      Janny,
      I’m so sorry to hear that you’re going through this. You are definitely not alone. Just read the other comments here and you’ll see that. I get emails regularly from women who have gone through the same thing. I’ve even gotten phone calls from women going through this. Necrosis happens much more frequently than I think even doctors realize.
      If you ever need to talk, my contact info is on the Contact page.

       
  19. Dorathy M. Bottoms

    June 7, 2011 at 10:33 pm

    Hi, I was really sadden to see and read your post, especially since at the present time I’m going thru a similar situation. I fully understand the desire to keep it to yourself. I have that alone feeling as well. The doctor assured me that I wasn’t healing due to my depression and not eating. As I explained to him, I only get depressed when I have to look at myself, which wasn’t a problem prior to my breast reduction.

    Approximately 3 days after my surgery I realized that there was something wrong with the right side. The two breast didn’t look or feel the same. Called my doctor, he assured me nothing was wrong that i just had some blistering under my bandages. When the bandages were removed so was my skin in that area. Wanting me to see what he was speaking about, prior to removing the bandages I was given a mirror. When I saw the area I just started to cry and couldn’t eat or sleep after that day, just cried and stayed in the house. About week later, all my stitches had started to break loose and the area looked much worse. Called the office was instructed to come in right away, especially since I could not stop crying while speaking with the receptionist. It was that visit, I wished I had never had the surgery. My doctor assured me again that it was going to heal.

    My surgery was performed on May 9th and now I have been enrolled in a Wound Treatment Center. I have treatment in a hypobaric chamber five days a week. My doctor believes that I’m not getting enough oxygen in my blood. I’m having a problem with this diagnosis. If that is the case, than why wasn’t the other breast the same. I’m really confused right now. I’ve already been informed that the blacken area where my nipple use to be will eventually fall off or be removed. I can expect a skin draft in the future to replace the other dead skin. I have a large hole located to the bottom of my breast and stitched area completely exposed down to the white meat and has the appearance of skin that someone has poured acid on. I can wipe my skin off very easy. Also I’ve been told that after two weeks if there is no noticeable improvement, a different approach will have to be taken.

    I just wanted to get some relief off my back. Prior to surgey I was a 38E. Now I’m suppose to be a 38D. As the days go by, I’m looking at the possibility of being a 38A or less. As I type this post with my tear filled eyes, I’m just glad to have someone that understand what I’m going thru. This surgery has changed my life and not for the better.

    I pray that things are much better for you. Perhaps when my nerves allow, I will post some pictures.

    Keep me in your prayers…………….DMB

     
    • Maria_Myrback

      June 7, 2011 at 10:46 pm

      My heart goes out to you. I know what you’re going through and 8 don’t think there is anything more difficult for a woman to bear. Your doctor is right in that 6ou need to eat. If you can’t make yourself take in solid food, then buy protein shakes and drink 4-5 of thos3 each day. Your body can’t heal without food.
      It may not seem like it now, but you’ll be okay. Once you have healed, you can have nipple reconstruction surgery and medical tattooing. If you do a search on my blog, you’ll even find the video of my nipple reconstruction surgery.
      If you ever need Simone to talk to, please don’t hesitate to contact me. You’re in my thoughts.

       
    • Deb

      July 31, 2011 at 7:54 am

      Hi Dorathy,

      I am going through a very similiar situation as yours. I’m so sorry to hear about your setbacks. I had a breast reduction 7/1/11. I went from a 38J to a supposedly 38D. 5 days after surgery they took the bandages off and under both breast it was really bruised along the vertical incision. Within a week it turned completely black and I was told the tissue and skin had died due to lack of oxygen and blood flow to these areas. The surgeon eventually cut away the black areas and I now have open, ugly, areas under both breasts. I feel like my breasts are going to split open if I move the wrong way. She assures me that skin will grow back, but in my mind I can’t believe it looking at these holes. I cry a lot and try to stay positive, but it is so hard. Can you tell me how you are progressing?

       
      • Maria_Myrback

        July 31, 2011 at 11:05 am

        If your insurance allows for it, look into a portable vacuum assisted wound closure device or VAC machine. It will speed healing, reducing months to weeks. BUT it won’t heal he tissue into a breast shape. You may want to talk to your surgeon about reconstruction if it’s that severe.

        I had a bilateral latissimus flap breast reconstruction two years ago. Read about that in the April 2009 entries. I still need one more round of nipple and areola tattooing but other than that, I’m great.

         
  20. Janny

    June 8, 2011 at 2:58 am

    Dorathy

    Your story is so familiar, and for you I wish it was different.

    It’s 3 months since surgery and about 2 since the first debridement. Like you only one breast was affected, and es at one point it got less oxygen or non and therefore the tissue cells started dying.

    Your doctor is right, you need to eat as well as you can. Good nutrition is so important, for wound healig and also to help with the depression .I am also disabled and there are days I cry. There are also day filled with sunshune and laughter again. You say you have to look after yourself, are you on your own? I will send you lots of heaing thoughts.

    My breast wound has now healed 80%, because of infections, we ( the plastic’s team and me) and keeping the last bit from closing. I am fully involve ini my care, the surgeon has been fantastic, giving me choices all the way. I have another 10 days, if the excubate has’t stopped by then I will need to go back into theatre for more surgical debridement. We are keeping out fingers crossed . I go to hospital twice a week, and the rest I do the packing and dressing myself.

    I am even researching nipple reconstruction now.

    There are even positives in this whole episode, I have met some wonderful people at my twice weekly wound checks, we have even set up our own little coffee club:-)

    The tiredness though…did others experience this immense tiredness too? I would like to know…..

     
  21. Hope Desroches

    June 18, 2011 at 10:33 pm

    I am posting for my mother, Elaine McKay. I hope that you are still actively checking this post because I know she would appreciate your support. My mother had a breast augumentation surgery on her breast a couple months ago. Unfortunately, due to her diabeties, her wonds did not heal and she had to have her nipples removed. I feel that this never should have happened to here. This doctor is clearly at fault and I would love to know what you think her next step should be. She wanted to improve her life and self confidence, but instead she is forced to deal with this.

    Please contact me, Hope Desroches, so I may give her your opinion. hopedesroches@gmail.com

    Thank you

     
    • Maria_Myrback

      June 18, 2011 at 11:17 pm

      Please check your email. I replied there.

       
      • Sarah Kyobe

        November 18, 2012 at 4:36 am

        Dear Maria,
        I had breast augemention 2 yrs ago. An unsuccessful lift and reduction a year after and a revision lift/reduction 6 months ago.
        I have already lost both nipples and skin has healed.
        I hadnt even had any pain in my necrosis left breast for the past 6 months until last week.
        That’s when the pain started again.
        I now have severe pain in my left breast and the area where my nipple used to be is dark and had.
        I also have a soft red lump under the breast.
        Could my necrosis have returned??
        Can necrosis return after 6 months?
        Please advise. Am very worried.
        Sarah.

         
      • Maria_Myrback

        November 18, 2012 at 10:50 am

        Sarah, I’m so sorry to hear about your difficulties. I’m not a doctor and I can’t diagnose so if you’re worried, you really should see a doctor. The red lump sounds like scar tissue. Have you been wearing a top or bra that could be rubbing or irritating the area? I doubt the necrosis is returning but being in that much pain is something you need to get checked out by a medical professional. Please let me know what you find out.

         
  22. DeeDee

    July 15, 2011 at 6:41 pm

    Wow – I cannot believe I finally found out what is wrong with me. 11 weeks ago I had a right side mastectomy with immediate free flap reconstruction and I woke up from surgery with my breast all bruised and blistered. The hospital staff said I must be a smoker and I have never smoked a day in my life, then they said I must have sensitive skin and it got burned when the cautery was used. None of it has made any sense. I go to the plastic surgeon every 2 weeks for debridement and I have to pack the open wound every day with saline soaked bandages and I use silvadene burn cream on the wound every night. It has been 11 weeks and I am only able to see a slight amount of healing so at this pace it will be the end of the year before the wound is closed. Thank you so much for your pictures and for your information. I am so grateful to you for sharing your experience. I too have pictures and if posting them would help others like you have helped me I would gladly do it.

     
  23. Deb

    July 29, 2011 at 7:21 am

    Hi Maria, so glad I found these photos. I had a breast reduction 4 weeks ago (7/1/11). I was very large and after the surgery developed necrotic tissue/dead skin under both breast along the vertical scars. My nipples and areolas are healing fine, but the other areas had to be bearded and are now open areas that look just like your photos. Couple of questions if you don’t mind? Does the skin grow back a different color? How long does it take for skin to actually start growing? Are there ridges along the outer edges of the area where the open area ends or does the new skin merge withe edges and smooth out? I would like to send you pictures. I’m very downhearted. Do you have an after picture of the new skin?

     
    • Maria_Myrback

      July 29, 2011 at 2:04 pm

      Deb;

      My situation was different from yours. After the implants removal, my sutures split open so I had two tennis ball sized open wounds where my breasts were.

      After that I was on a portable vacuum assisted wound closure machine for 7 weeks. The wounds closed, but I was deformed. When I had the reconstruction, my surgeon used a technique that loosened up the scar tissue so hat skin could be used. If you look at the posts from mid-April you can see the results.

      As far as skin growth goes, there is going to be scar tissue where the new and old skin comes together. I couldn’t tell you if it will come back a different color. It shouldn’t.

      Keep an eye on the comments and see if anyone has a more definitive answer. You could also ask your PS. That’s what s/he is there for.

      All the best to you. Sorry I couldn’t be more help.

       
      • Cathy Downum

        February 5, 2012 at 1:47 am

        Maria/Deb

        So glad this is open and here!!! My 2-4 hour breast reduction took 12 1/2 hours! 1-9-2012 . Right one looks great but the left one OMG I just had my 2nd surgery last wed where they went in and removed all of the dead areola skin off. Had to go see him thur, we took the bandages off and I about crap! I have a huge half moon shape cut in my areola , when I looked at it I saw all the pink tissue that belongs IN my breast. So Dr came in and looked at it said it looked alright (don’t know where he was looking!) it looks like my nipple is still attached just most of the rest is gone!. So he said I have to come back mon 3 surgery now and he wants to go back thru and get some that he missed ugh.. Thr nurse called to confirm the appt and I asked her what was on the schedule..which is how I learned about the vacuum! it’s on his notes that he might be doing this, I’m diabetic and smoking I know I know! But when you see your boob falling off you tend to want one! So above..are you NOT recommending the VAC? I heal real slow but I don’t want it to look even more deformed, know what I mean? I have like a day to decide lol. I kinda just want it healed and over with. Can they reshape them so to speak? I won’t go into the first surgery where I almost died. Plus he JUST now put me on antibiotics, becuz when they removed the tube from my throat after the 2nd surgery apparently there was lots of mucus on it. Could be pnuemonia too I guess..

        I went from 46F to a C cup. I love being able to see where I’m waking again! but not the dead areola.
        Also I was told not to put ANY creme or lotion or antibiotic stuff on. But I read other blogs where everyone was put directly piy on antibiotics, and told to use neosporin cream. Anybody else using anything? what about mederma, obviously probably not with open wounds.

        Thanx Cathy

         
      • Maria_Myrback

        February 5, 2012 at 3:07 am

        Cathy;

        In my case the VAC didn’t heal my chest into a breast shape. It can’t. It just closes the wound. But it’s Much faster than packing and since you’re diabetic, this would be much better for you..

        By the way, pink skin is a good sign. Grey or black? Not so much: -)

         
  24. Janny

    July 31, 2011 at 12:02 pm

    I am/was in a similar situation and maybe this will assure you, my breast is almost healed, tissue and skin almost completely grown back. I am in the UK (and thank god for our NHS) and although we did consider the vac pump, we treated it with debridement and old fashioned dressing and packing ( iodine soaked ribbons, and later a gel dressing). I had the full support of a plastic surgery dressing clinic at the local hospital, and still go once a week for a wound check. The nurses encouragement and support have kept me going. I don’t know if you have the same services in the USA, I hope so. But what I really mean to say :hold in there, there is an end to this horrific tunnel.

     
    • Deb

      August 1, 2011 at 12:38 am

      Thanks so much. I feel so much better knowing there is hope and that others have gone through similar experiences. I just sometimes wonder how something normal can come from this huge, ugly, gaping area. How ling did it take for skin to start growing? I have been eating very well, taking in lots of protein, water, and taking a multivitamin and vitamin C.

       
  25. Janny

    July 31, 2011 at 12:06 pm

    ps: the skin started growing after a few months, and granulation of tissue ( growth) was being kept in check to make sure the scar is smooth. The skin has grown back a different colour, but it is new and paperthin, and once it is mature, I have been told it will be tattooed, and a reconstruction will be performed as well different order). Remember as well, that any scar tissues will be at it reddish after about 3 or 4 months, and then the red will fade. I hope this is of some help.

     
  26. Deb

    August 1, 2011 at 10:41 am

    Sorry Janny, just saw your other reply that answered my question about how long it took for skin to grow back. Thanks so much.

     
  27. Joan

    August 3, 2011 at 3:08 pm

    Thank you, everyone. I can’t believe how hard it is to find others in the same condition. I am in my third month and don’t see much improvement. 1/2 of one breast is open. I am now at the point where I can drive and move around a bit without splitting open more. My doctor was not sympathetic at all and refused to acknowledge there was a problem until I brought in a second opinion. This is a very emotional issue when you see yourself getting worse when you are suppose to be healing. Hopefully, your doctor will give you encouragement. These stories and pictures that tell how long it takes to heal, the progress, the stages, and the outcomes will help all women in this situation.

    So many people blow off this procedure as though it is a little nip and tuck. We all know it is a serious procedure, but no one ever discussed the extent of the complications.

    It helps just knowing I am not out there alone.
    Good luck to you all.

     
    • Maria_Myrback

      August 3, 2011 at 4:09 pm

      The reason it’s so hard to find others with this same situation is that there is such a stigma surrounding cosmetic surgery. Especially when it goes wrong. And it DOES go wrong like this much more frequently than we are led to believe. Doctors are not required to report complications like ours to any medical agency. And what’s scarrier, as i’ve written about in this blog, ANY MD can call himself a plastic surgeon. There are no special courses required for that. So any Joe Schmuck that graduated in the bottom 10% of his medical class can call himself a plastic surgeon and the patients never know. That’s why you ALWAYS make sure that your PS is certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery. There are actual requirements to be certified by this group.

      Take care of yourself and keep in touch on your progress.

       
      • lori

        September 27, 2011 at 11:14 pm

        I just had all the milk ducts removed from both breast and got superficial Necrosis . I want to go for a reduction next now i am scared . If the cells need that much oxygen to survive then why are they sending us home the same day . And why are they not sending us home with oxygen tanks to raise our levels . I think there is more here then they are telling us considering most people i know who had reductions lost there nipples and did not smoke ! I also had the milk ducts removed i should say because I had been lactating since i was a virgin with no cause . No one after test after test could tell me why . You know if a man was leaking any were there would have been a cure and it would be covered 100 % by insurance !

         
      • lori

        November 15, 2011 at 1:31 pm

        Since having all my ducts removed I escaped with only losing half of my right nipple from the necrosis I hope you are all doing better!

         
      • Maria_Myrback

        November 18, 2011 at 9:43 pm

        I am. I had a bilateral latissimus flap reconstruction and I’m going in for my second round of areolae tattooing on Monday. Hopefully the pigment will take better on the scar tissue this time.

        Will you be having any corrective surgery?

         
      • lori

        November 20, 2011 at 11:45 pm

        If I do anything it can’t be till next summer. Glad you are doing better. I think I found a good doctor but he will not tell me why my non smoking friends got necrosis and my smoking friends did not kind of blows that smokinvg theory out the window. I would still like a lift. After lactating for so manyyears with no cause they are dragging me down and maybe my nipple helped some but I am scared and trying to educate myself as much as possible

         
      • Maria_Myrback

        November 22, 2011 at 12:00 am

        Lori;

        Your surgeon probably can’t answer your question because so many factors play in to the development of necrosis. It isn’t just smoking. Weight plays a factor as does genetics, the type of surgery and a load of other things as well.

        Educating yourself is the best thing you can possibly do. Talk to LOTS of people about this. Get their experiences and thoughts. Everybody has had a different experience or a different way of describing what they went through whether it was a perfect surgury or a horrible one.

        Also, talk to your PS about the different types of lifts. There’s more than just the anchor lift.

        Best of luck to you and when you have your surgery please come back and tell us how it went.

         
      • lori

        November 23, 2011 at 1:46 am

        Thanks your looking great

         
  28. Joan

    August 5, 2011 at 3:31 pm

    I suggestion people take pictures daily, for two reasons. 1) If your doctor tries to dispute the severity, you have something to refer to. 2) It helps you see the progress, once it does start. It’s so slow, you may feel like you are getting no where. 3) I like seeing my doctor cringe…it reminds her of the lousy work she did.

    Also, I think people should turn their doctor into the medical board. Just because you sign away your life with elective cosmetic surgery, doesn’t mean bad doctors can’t have a ding on their record. Make comments on the doctor referral websites. It isn’t fair to other women who will end up in the same situation. And these doctors should not be able to walk away as good surgeons. But before you do, make sure your doctor holds up to correcting the problem.

    Stand by your rights. Doctors are suppose to correct their problems.

    For those just getting complications, it helps to understand the length of time it takes to heal and stages. We all need reassurance that it will get better. But the odds are, it will get a lot worse than you imagined or that your doctor will prepare you for before getting better. Luckily, I have a relative that is a surgeon who tells me more than my PS.

    I knew I had nipple necrosis within a day after surgery. The nipple healed in ~6-8 weeks, except for the areas where I had tension separation. I had skin necrosis (black skin) at the bottom of the T from the beginning, which spread up the lateral incision. That didn’t burst apart until 5 weeks after my surgery. Then the opening just rippled across the bottom. The skin continued to roll back and open up for 2 more weeks. At the worst, I pulled the skin down as far as I could. Taped up the boob like a solid cone, put my arm in a sling so it wouldn’t move, iced the boob down a couple times a day, and went to the couch for 4 days without moving until the skin quit pulling back. I don’t recommend this for anyone. But, I felt I had to do something, nothing was stopping the tension from pulling the skin back completely across the breast.

    The tape started causing blisters. But at that point, I could put pressure on the skin to stay in place with pads I inserted in the bra. Another week later, the edges started firming enough that I wasn’t ripping any more.

    It’s been 12 weeks, and I can finally see enough stability that I feel comfortable moving around. Still limited picking up anything or doing much.

    Doctors estimate it will take ~ 7 months for the scar to form across the opening, and ~ 1 yr when we know what we are working with.

    And ladies, don’t be ashamed. Get those gruesome pictures out at your hair salon — the best place to spread the word about a PS.

     
  29. Deb

    August 5, 2011 at 3:44 pm

    This sounds exactly like what is happening to me. Once the PS removed the black skim, the incision opened up double the size. I felt like it was going to take over my entire breast! It us SO ugly. I do take pictures every week. I am finally seeing some improvement in the color if the tissue. It just seems like it will be an eternity before skin grows and then I will have to have a revision. It gets very frustrating sometimes and I try to stay positive because I know stress and worry slow healing, but when you see this ugly wound every day, it’s HARD.

     
    • Joan

      August 5, 2011 at 4:17 pm

      The emotional drain adds to of the problem in a big way. It’s not what you signed up for. The doctors don’t recognize how disruptive this is to your personal life. So, we have to make the best of it. I’m training my husband to do chores he never did before. Since surgery was 1st week of May, I’m hoping the training has become HARD WIRED!!!

      Deb, sounds like you have turned around quickly. I scanned these messages. Seems like 3 months is the turning point for most people. Not that it is much of a turn. But when we can quit crying and actually feel like we are getting healthier.

      Show your pictures to your friends and family. No one understands the condition you are in. They can’t imagine it. Most people think you are just slowly healing from surgery, not a screwed up surgery. Get your friends and family’s to understand what you are dealing with. And you are probably dealing with it much better than they guessed.

       
  30. Maria Myrback

    August 5, 2011 at 5:42 pm

    I agree with Joan completely. Show your family the photos you take. I tried to isolate myself as much as possible to save them the emotional stress and i bore it all myself. To a point. I think it would have been easier on my family if they had seen what was going on from the beginning when the necrosis was just apparent deep bruising. This is the hardest thing any of us will probably ever have to deal with. Don’t make the mistake I did by isolating myself until things were really bad. Talk to your family. Share what you’re feeling.

    When you are emotionally able, I would urge you all to blog. Post your photos. As far as I know, my blog is the ONLY resource for breast necrosis photos. We need more out there so that other women who may not find Boobcast, can know that they are not alone.

    Deb, I think we might have talked about this but I would urge you to at least investigate VAC therapy to speed wound closure. These are the people that I used http://www.kci1.com/KCI1/vactherapy They rent the machine, sell the supplies and will come over and change dressings. I still say the VAC saved my life.

     
  31. Deb

    August 5, 2011 at 6:50 pm

    Thanks so much for taking the time to respond. It really helps. My husband has also learned to do things he has never did before! I could get used to this if he would only do them like I did! Each day I learn a little mire and feel a bit more encouraged. There is the final hope that down the road a revision can be done. I plan on posting my pictures at some point. I looked forever to find a similar situation and this site was the only one I found. I’d like to give some hope to others in the same situation as well.

     
  32. Deb

    August 6, 2011 at 11:21 am

    I appreciate the replies and encouragement so much. Maria I’m not sure I could afford VAC. I had to pay for my BR out of pocket, so I’m sure my insurance would not cover it. The wounds are getting better daily, it’s such a slow process. I will mention the VAC to my plastic surgeon and see if maybe I can get it through them.

    Joan, did you get infections and fatty yellow necrosis before the healthy tissue formed? Also, how will I know that skin is starting to granulate?

     
    • Joan

      August 7, 2011 at 7:53 pm

      I’m in my 13th week. I had a breast reduction with liposuction on the sides of my body. Went from a 38DDD to a 36B to relieve weight that caused back problems and constant migraines. I can report NO HEADACHES! Incisions went from one side of the back, across the front to the other side of the back. And of course up the breast. Lipo from arm pit down the side. I had lots of swelling, tension separation. The opening was 6″ across bottom incision, up and over top of nipple, all sides. Silvadene ointment was prescribed for the dressing.

      Update: In the last week, I’ve made a huge turnaround and started to rapidly form skin when we switched the ointment from silvadene to silvasorb gel. Big difference within days. The silvasorb is not messy, keeps it soft and moist, but not too moist. Skin, not granulation is forming fast. With silvasorb, I can use thin non-stick pads and change the dressing only 1X a day. Before, I had to change silvadene 3X a day to keep it from getting thick, dragging, then causing bleeding (I live in a dry area). Silvadene seemed to kept the tissue around the edges too soft.

      The black necrosis around the nipple was gone 3 weeks ago. The nipple looks like a bumpy, thick nipple. Not like the other, but not freakish. I still have holes around the nipple and hard fat lumps under it. The overall “pit” opening was still splitting and expanding until 4 weeks ago. I was very swollen until that time. The separation wounds are caused from tension/pulling, skin stretched too thin. When the pulling stabilized, the skin on the edges stayed in place with support for ~ a week (quit expanding). The next week, the skin held by itself, no signs of scarring progress. Then, the following week it looked calmer and slight firming on the very edge, but mostly still bloody YUK in most of the middle. Then, changed ointment to silvasorb, and red skin started taking off. Huge difference. It’s suddenly healing very, very quickly. (It’s all relative.)

      The pit, the deepest part in the center, is rising. The scarring is pushing the old fat to the top. The center and areas that opened last still have yellow necrosis and raw tissue, but they are calmer and don’t bleed unless it becomes irritated from rubbing. I had holes that looked like worm holes inside “the pit”. They have started to fill in over the last couple days. Red skin is quickly creeping over the granulation. The doctor trimmed off the tops of the granulation to keep the scar flat. Skin is forming over those areas.

      Check out silvasorb. A new product, not all pharmacies carry it.

      I had a small opening at the T on the other breast with necrosis. 1″x1″ treated with packing. It is closed and completely healed as of last week. Dr. estimates a couple more months for scar tissue to completely cover “the pit”. By the way, “the pit” is not a pit any more. There will be some indentation, but most of it is filling in.

      Hope this gives you some sense of time and stages. My biggest problem was the swelling and tension. I kept getting worse until the pulling subsided. Once that calmed down, it could start healing.

      Deb, I looked through your older messages, one about ridges on the scars. I am not forming ridges. The skin is thinly covering the granulation.

      Others may want to comment about their final scarring appearance.

      If you are on the upside and not ripping apart, you have probably seen the worst and are on your way!

       
  33. Deb

    August 7, 2011 at 11:30 pm

    Wow. This post really helped me tremendously. It really explained a lot of things I was wondering about and answered a lot of my questions. I have a 2″ x 1″ opening on left breast below nipple and a huge opening on my right breast that I can’t really give a measurement for! It’s a triangle shape starting under the nipple at about 1″ wide and bottom is about 4″ right along the vertical incision. The left one is mostly red raw tissue with a small bit of yellow fat necrosis. The right one (which I’ll call the Beast) is combination of raw red tissue and yellow fat. But it looks like the bottom portion is forming skin. I am going to ask about silvasorb. Thanks for taking the time to explain. Even though it is a long healing process, it helps to know the stages and what to expect.

     
  34. M Holland

    August 8, 2011 at 3:31 pm

    Thank you so much for posting your photos. I had breast surgery 4 days ago and my breast looks exactly like yours. I am in no pain. I went to the hospital on the advice of a nurse and they said the bruising was normal. I said it appears to be getting darker and darker in areas. they said it is because it was bleeding still. I am still vomiting from the surgery. I have a tender spot for the amount of bruising there is I should be in a lot of pain and I am not. I was so hoping I would find a picture that best describes it and yours are great. So sorry that you have to go through all this but you have at least helped one person. Thank you.

     
  35. Janny

    August 10, 2011 at 3:05 am

    Hello all

    I am seeing my surgeon again in a few hours to talk about recostructive surgery. My breast wound has healed incredibly well, I am glad I went the dressing route instead of surgery when the necrosis started. Through constant debridement and careful packing ( using iodine soaked ribbons and silver dressings, and all kinds) the scar almost looks like an areola, the scar tissue smooth and quite an even colour. The wound is ALMOST closed up, which means I can go swimming soon,yesssss.

    The surgeon is reluctant about reconstruction now, says I pose a ‘challenge’, I think he is less than confident and scared necrosis will happen again. His loudest comment was ‘why do women want a nipple, is it for something to poke through their bikine top’. I am flattered the man can see me in his mind in a bikini top at 52, but it hurt. Insensitive bastard was the verdict from if he does his job properly, and the nursing staff know that if I say I am i pain I am in pain, we should surely be ok. I pose a challenge as I am on low dose chemo, and various other immune suppressants – yet I healed fast. my GP and the plastic dressing nurses are fully behind me where a reconstruction is concerned.

    I have taken some pictures along the way which I will post here as soon as I have taken another one after this visit.

    At least no rioting here tonight, and with all the police presence it’s as quiet as an early sundaymorning, at least the hospital trip should be traffic-stress free.

    So, I am hoping that later on I can say to you all : hey it’s ok, there is a light end to this long tunnel

    Janny

     
  36. Kim

    August 14, 2011 at 7:03 pm

    Thank you for posting pic! I’m a week & 2 days out of reduction surgery & we are attempting to save my rt nipple. Mine has some pink but mostly black however just the graph not the breast like yours. Thank you for your posts! I can’t tell you how much I appreciate it!

     
  37. Joan

    August 16, 2011 at 9:54 pm

    Update on the silvasorb and “the pit”…The silvasorb quickly hardened and crystalized when I went outside in the AZ heat. Switched back to silvadene. But I think the silvasorb helped firm up the edges and gave me a jump on forming a solid edge. Now, skin is growing quickly. Red, but smooth.

    On the road to recovery feels great! I hope people visit this site when they are healed. You probably don’t want to think about what you went through. But this site is the only support these poor women get.

    Kim, my nipple was solid black. When it healed, it looked darker than the other, thick and rubbery. But not too bad. Now it is softening up nicely and turning the lighter color. I don’t think anyone would notice the difference unless they knew to look. It doesn’t have feeling, but it protrudes like a normal nipple. (in 4th month)

     
  38. Lisa

    August 24, 2011 at 1:58 pm

    I want to thank you for posting the pictures, and your story. All of this information has been very helpful. I had breast reduction ten days ago (from a DDD to a C) and all went well. I have noticed that my left nipple is dark and numb, while the right is almost all pink and has feeling. I am slightly panicked and have a dr appointment this afternoon. This board has made me feel better and I appreciate everyone putting up their stories.

     
  39. Lisa

    August 24, 2011 at 10:24 pm

    The dr said there is a small spot (the size of a dime) that I will lose. He said the rest of the area looks good and should be fine. Did anyone else have an experience like this? I’m concerned of it “spreading”, even though he seemed confident that it’s an isolated area. I go back on Friday.

     
  40. Joan

    August 24, 2011 at 10:31 pm

    It depends if you have tension on your incisions. That’s what leads to it not healing and pulling apart more. I had a black area at the T that stayed contained. The other side blew up had a lot of tension. That was obvious from the beginning. I had lots of swelling and pulling from the beginning. The black was at the T and slowly spread up the middle incision. When that burst, the whole thing blew up, across the bottom incision, and around the nipple on the 5th week. If you have any pulling, keep it supported tightly.

     
    • Joan

      August 25, 2011 at 11:37 am

      MORE ON DOCTORS: The odds are this is your doctor’s fault, NOT YOURS! If you suspect a problem is starting to develop, START TAKING DAILY PICTURES OF THE PROGRESSION AND DOCUMENTING EVERYTHING. Tell your doctor you are taking pictures. If they start being defensive, take someone in the sessions with you. Whether you can sue or not, you may not want to just because of the hassle. But as part of the doctors ethics, they are to admit to the problem, resolve it (meaning they fix it for free), and stand by their patient.

      You have to let them know you understand what is happening and you want to know what they are going to do about it.
      If they don’t admit to what is happening and be willing to fix it, you have every right to file a complaint with the state medical board and the board they are certified through.

      You have to keep a relationship with the doctor, but hold them to their responsibility.

      You will likely not be able to get a second opinion from another plastic surgeon. No one wants to step into a problem and they don’t make comments about each other. If you are lucky to know another surgeon to explain to you what is going on, all the better. But PICTURES can take down a Dr.’s practice faster than a complaint. So, let the dr. know YOU KNOW WHAT IS GOING ON and YOU ARE TAKING PICTURES.

      Wound separation and skin necrosis is caused by the skin stretched too tight. Meaning the Dr. cut it too short or didn’t take out enough breast tissue underneath to allow for swelling. The nipple is caused by loss of blood supply to the nipple, either the core was cut too small,l they took too long to move it, or was compromised some other way during surgery.

      Just because you signed papers that relieves them of liabilities before the surgery, doesn’t mean that they cannot be held accountable for BAD WORK. Ladies, you got a botched job. It has nothing to do with what you are eating.

      So, get tough and hold them to fixing it (if you don’t mind seeing their face after going through this for months). Rate them on all the local doctor lists and file a complaint with the board if you do not get fixed for free. THIS IS SIMPLY A TAX WRITE OFF FOR THEM.

      My doctors was PS certified and on the covers of many magazines as the best in town. This is not the first time this happened. They get away with it because people think they can’t complain when it is PS. Above, Maria stated there is still a stigma attached to PS. That is true. But that’s no reason we should let these people strut around as hot shots. Plastic surgeons are getting away with way too much.

      TAKE THOSE PICTURES

       
  41. Maria_Myrback

    August 25, 2011 at 12:34 pm

    As many of you already know, I am legally bound not to mention the name of the surgeon who did this to me. HOWEVER that doesn’t keep YOU from lodging complaints. Before I signed the papers, I wrote about this situation on a site called the Complaints Board. There are also doctor review sites that you can write on. I’ll be putting up a new Boobcast post soon with all the pertinent information.

    In the mean time, keep taking those pictures!

     
  42. ciera

    August 28, 2011 at 9:51 pm

    omg i cant belive its someone else out their .iv went through the same thing and its terrible scary, sadning,gives u axiaty,depression,and what ever else u can think of i never went back to this ps dr.baddoura i feel disfigured my breast was a hole lot worse than the third pic of you . im wondering y no-one has taken legal action ,because i know i did and if any one else did hit me on my email. honey i know what your going through the hurt and embarrsment of ever taken your bra off its sicking how they can stress how beautiful theyll look but cant stress of the nasty ugly stage u might have to go through this stuff upsets me. UR SO BRAVE LET ME KNOW HOW THE NEXT SURGERY WOKS OUT

     
    • Maria_Myrback

      August 28, 2011 at 10:06 pm

      Thank you so much for your kindness. I looked into suing but I wouldn’t have has enough for reconstruction even if they COULD prove negligence. I wrote about it in another post. Take a look in the search feature. You’ll also find photos of my breasts after a bilateral latissimus flap reconstruction. I’m VERY happy with The Twins.

       
    • Kyla A

      November 13, 2012 at 1:29 pm

      Ciera, I’m thinking about sueing. Can you email me at scrapnsew43@bellsouth.net I’d love to chat! thanks, Kyla

       
  43. Christina

    August 31, 2011 at 10:03 pm

    Hi, I found your page whilst doing research on tissue necrosis, and wanted to talk to you about it. First of all, thank you for being so gutsy in doing that .. I plan to myself when I have the energy, and am emotionally capable.

    I underwent br surgery on 7/11, and caught the necrosis fast enough to where I started hyperbaric oxygen treatment (daily) almost immediately. It’s been over two months now and I am still stuck with this huge open wound that is BEYOND painful. I have entered depression, and now rely on pain meds to get me through the day. And even those don’t cut it when I have to take a shower.

    I was wondering if you also had terrible pain as it was healing, and for how long. Also, did you sue for mal practice ? And, what do your breasts look like now? A year later. I know I will be scarred for life, but I want to know how severely.

    Hope to hear from you soon. Thanks.


    Best,
    Christina P. Kantzavelos
    MSW Candidate 2012
    UCLA School of Public Affairs
    Department of Social Welfare

    “Kindness is a language which the deaf can hear and the blind can see.”— Mark Twain

     
    • Joan

      September 16, 2011 at 9:41 pm

      Christina, I looked into mal prac in AZ. Not a chance here unless the condition is permanent. You need to look into CA laws. You can file a complaint with your state medical board. I suggest everyone does. They will review the case without you needing an attorney. TAKE PICTURES DAILY.

      I’m on my 5th month and still only 50% covered over with scar tissue. I was told it could take 5 to 7 months. Then, you have to wait for ~ 6 months for the skin to firm up before cutting out the scar tissue and pulling it together. Else, the skin may be too weak to hold stitches again. This procedure any surgeon could do and could be minor operation if you have enough skin to pull.
      To get an idea of the size of my opening and the timeline so you have something to compare to, read my comments above.

      Good luck. And thanks to Maria for keeping the support going.

       
  44. lori

    October 19, 2011 at 11:11 pm

    God bless I am saying prayers for everyone tonight to be healed mentally an physically

     
  45. andrea

    October 26, 2011 at 12:09 am

    Dear ladies

    Thank you for all your support and photos. At 44 i made the decision to go through with my BR (on 6 September 2011) and going from a 14g/h to 14D with full knowledge of nipple re-grafting, I thought loosing not one but two nipples wouldn’t happen. However week 2 saw the loss of my RH nipple (thorugh reduced blood flow without it totally going black and requiring daily dressing and de-bridement ) and then week 4 saw my LH nipple necrose and turn black. and scaly.
    Throught the care offered by my PS and the nurse at my local GP (who only charged for cost of dressings, not time:) ) what were ugly open sores have now closed up with silver dressing, good diet and trying not to stress. My advice is to take lots of care, talk to your PS or GP or a friendly counsellor and not shoulder the burden by yourself (my immediate family live in NZ) and I have a group of great girl friends who listened and offered support and love before, during and after surgery.
    The skin is still very pink and with twice a day applications of bio-oil, is starting to look less angry. There are days, when i massage cream into the skin and scars that I feel tiny bumps and think – am I going to loose all this nice new skin). Any advice or information would be appreciated on whether its worth going down the route of further re-construction or cosmetic tattooing .
    Sending everyone lots of healing thoughts and wishes

    Andrea

     
    • Maria_Myrback

      October 26, 2011 at 12:26 am

      Andrea;

      I’m so sorry you went though this. It’s not an easy thing to survive. I’m glad to hear that the wounds are finally healed. As one who went through this, I’m SO happy to hear that you didn’t go through this alone. That was a lesson I didn’t learn easily or quickly.

      I’ve done the reconstruction route (that story is elsewhere on this blog in vivid detail) and without a doubt it was the best thing I could have done for myself. But take your time. Wait until you’re ready to face it. Jumping in wasn’t an option for me. I had too much emotional baggage.

      If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to email me personally.

       
  46. lubna

    October 29, 2011 at 3:30 pm

    its horrible i can’t keep looking at this photo… thats necrosis related with fat necrosis and consider as trauma…but thanks for this photo cause it help me in my study

     
  47. Janny Koster

    November 15, 2011 at 3:49 pm

    8 1/2 months since the necrosis started. The scar is healed on the surface, but according to the surgeon there is still a lot of healing going on. I can see changes in stages. I am seeing him again in 3 months, and I actually don’t want to see HIM. Maria’s last update made so much sense, the connection between being on the examining couch and the flashbacks to all the debridements. I am scared if I have a reconstruction, that the same thing will happen again. Do others have ths fear?

    Janny

     
    • Maria_Myrback

      November 18, 2011 at 9:48 pm

      I’ve heard from other women that the return of the necrosis is a pretty common fear. What made a big difference for me is changing surgeons. When I felt that I was ready for reconstructive surgery I found someone who had a trustworthy reputation, who also teaches these techniques world-wide. I have a link to Dr. Elliott’s information on the front page of this site.

      Keep in touch and let us all know how you’re coming along.

       
  48. Rebecca Beard

    November 19, 2011 at 6:51 am

    I have recently had surgery for the 3rd time on my breasts 1st time in 2000, 2nd time may of 04 due to a leaking implant on my left side and the 3rd was on Wed Nov. 16th due to the same side (left) implant leaking.My right breast is perfectly fine no excessive bruising or pain the left side however has a lot more bruising around the nipple underneath the breast in the crease and it seems to spreading outwards but no pain around my nipple where the cut was made. Is this normal ? The left side did have more scar tissue build up than the right side someone please let me know if you have experienced something like I have ,what steps did you take to continue healing up properly.

     
    • Maria_Myrback

      November 19, 2011 at 12:05 pm

      Rebecca;

      I hope someone with more experience with implants can help. I only had them for about three weeks. Though the research I’ve done says that implants generally get replaced about every 6-10 years. They’re not a permanent solution. So depending on your age, you’ll probably have several more surgeries before all is said and done.

      You mentioned you have scar tissue. Next time you have to have surgery, find a good PS who knows how to do what’s called “releasing the scar tissue”. After I healed from the bilateral dehescience, I was deformed on both sides. While Dr. Elliott (please see the front page of this blog (boobcast.com) for his contact information and what he’s done for me) was in doing the reconstruction, he basically cut on the back side of the skin a bunch of times to loosen it up and turn it back into normal looking skin. If you do a search on the front page for my reconstruction photos, you can see them for yourself.

      As for the bruising, just keep an eye on it. There really isn’t anything else you can do for simple bruising. If it gets to the point where the bruises are black or close to it, talk to your doctor about it and see if s/he will give you a cream to improve circulation. Unfortunately I can’t remember what it’s called but it’s usually used for heart patients to increase blood flow.

      Keep in touch and let me know how things go.

       
  49. Christine

    November 19, 2011 at 9:04 pm

    I can’t begin to explain how appreciative and relieved I am to find your blog. I had a breast lift 5 weeks ago due to extreme sagging from breast feeding 3 children. I was so excited to have the surgery and now I look like a freak. A week after the surgery my dr. (and he is a certified PS), noticed there was a purple blister on the skin under my nipple when he took the bandages off. He told me the skin would turn black and die. The area that turned black and was about an inch wide and maybe 2″ long. I went back to the dr. A week later and he removed the black skin. The area proceeded to grow and is about the size of my palm. It turned yellow and seeped a lot and now is a pinkish marbly color. It is extremely painful to wear a bra. I am repulsed when I look in the mirror and see this EVERY DAY. My husband was against me having the surgery and thought I looked fine the way I was. Now I look like this. My dr. assures me that it will heal and I will probably have a scar that is about a half inch wide but that he can fix it but this will take many months to heal. I don’t know if I am willing to have him fix the scar once it heals for fear of this happening again. I am depressed, tired of being in pain and wish I had never done this all because I was vain about the way my body looked. I know I am fortunate after seeing and reading what you went through since my nipples are intact. Thank you for sharing your experience and photos, it’s nice to know I am not the only one.

     
    • Maria_Myrback

      November 22, 2011 at 12:40 am

      Christine;

      It’s horrifying to see this happen to yourself. I ought to know. It’s normal to feel this way. You ARE very fortunate to have a relatively small surface area affected. It may not seem like it now but it won’t be long before you have brand new skin where the lesions once were. Just keep treating it the way your PS tells you to and you’ll be healed in no time flat.

      If your husband is a good guy he’ll understand that this isn’t your fault and that right now you need him to be supportive. If he isn’t supportive, I’ll come kick his ass for you because the LAST thing you need right now is for him to give you grief. You’ve got enough stress without dealing with him, too.

      And above all, remember you are not alone. You can email me or, if things get really bad you can even call me. My info is on the Contact tab on the home page of this site.

      As for the scars, I don’t want to sound trite or belittle what you feel. As I said before, you’re perfectly justified in however you feel. I personally embrace my scars. Scars are just tattoos with better stories ;-)

       
    • Christine

      November 22, 2011 at 5:49 pm

      Thank you for your reply. After what you went through, can you give me an idea how long it took to heal from the necrosis. The area is about the size of a tennis ball and is pink and seeps. How long could it possibly take for actual skin to form? I know everyone heals differently but just a ballpark idea of how long this is going to last. My dr. Says several months and it’s been 6 wks fri. This is complete torture. Fortunately my husband has been fantastic but he can do nothing about the pain and discomfort. Thanks so much.

       
      • Maria_Myrback

        November 22, 2011 at 6:06 pm

        I wish I could give you a better idea than a ball park figure. Fortunately it’s pink. The seeping is probably serous fluid trying to heal the area. That’s normal.

        It could be as long as 3-4 months from your description. I know it’s difficult. Just keep doing what you’re doing. If that’s too long talk to your PS about using a vaccine assisted wound closure machine. If you search that term on my site and in Google, you’ll get some helpful info.

        Also, talk to your PS about pain killers.

        Glad to hear I won’t have to injure Hubby: -)

        Maria

         
      • Janny Koster

        November 23, 2011 at 1:18 am

        Christine…..

        Mine was about the same size, and the skin took about 4 to 5 month to heal over. Pink is good, it is living and healthy. I live in the UK, and was seen by a nurses team three times a week in the beginning ( they woud not let the flesh granulate at first, so the wound was packed each day with silver dressings, iodine, all kinds at different times). Did you have this kind of support? Ask you doc for stronger painkillers, eat well ( very important), rest – healing is a tiring business for the body- and know there IS light at the end of the tunnel.

        Hope thiis helps

         
  50. Mechelle

    January 2, 2012 at 10:33 pm

    I am glad I found this site. I have realized I am not alone. I had BR 11/22/11 and a week later had to have my left nipple removed due to necorsis. I had to go thru 3 debridement sessions. One each week for three weeks. This is so scarey because even though I could not feel to much it was still some what painful at times. After the first debridement my wound was about the size of a softball. I was horrified. I cried and cried. My PS who is board certified has been great as far as my feelings and helping me to realize that this will heal. A week after the last debridement I was amazed how much gradular tissue had grown. Now the open wound is abount 1 inch wide and 3 inches long and only about 1/2 inch deep. I am packing the wound with saline gauze 2x a day. I have been really blessed by not having any infection thus far. I thank God each day.

    But the emotional pain at first was the worst.. Thank you Maria, I took your advise and I did talk to my family and let them know what was happening to me. I have taken pictures each week and I share them with my husband, parents, and sisters. (I normally take one every Monday to compare, now they will email me and say, “hey its picture day”) They are so releaved to see the impovement each week. But I still get really scared at times. I have noticed I have alot more feeling now. That is good I hope, but it is bad when it comes to trying to set up straight for long periods of time. I assume this is due to the pulling feeling on the new tisssue. It is alittle uncomfortable when I remove the gauze.

    I have never ate as healthy as I am now. I don’t ever remember trying to eat 3 to 4 servings of fruit and vegtables a day and consume so much protein. I have amazed myself I am totally off sodas and only drink water, milk, or juice. I guess this is one good thing that has come out of this.

    I am wondering how my breast will look after it heals. I hope that is fills out correctly. I admire your courage to go through with reconstruction and nipple graft. My PS said he would not do a graft to create a new nipple for atleast 1 year. He said he wants my breast to heal completely and have mature and healthy tissue before we undergo another surgery. I have not discussed this with him, but I am considering just having the 3D tattoos. Maybe it is just to early for me to even think about another surgery.

    I go back to the PS Wednesday. Please keep me in your prayers I get a good report.

     
    • Maria_Myrback

      January 3, 2012 at 11:55 am

      Mechelle;

      I’m so glad to hear that you’re healing well! See? A support network really makes all the difference in the world. It’s great that they’re being so wonderful.

      I’m curious though why your doctor is doing a graft rather than a reconstruction, though. Unless he’s concerned that there will be a repeat of what you’re healing from.

      Please keep us all updated on your healing process. You’re doing great!

       
      • Mechelle

        January 3, 2012 at 12:47 pm

        My PS is concerned that I will have the same problem all over again. So,he is letting me heal without the use of a vac (so far I don’t have any infection thank God). He said that my breast should fill out and heal up round and some what smooth because we are not using the vac. I can see some of what he is saying, but I know there is going to be atleast a 3 inch scar going down my breast where the nipple use to be. He is the professor of plastic surgery at UAB in Birmingham and has been doing this for 49 years. He said he has seen alot of this. But strange we never hear about it or we just don’t expect it to happen to us.

        Has anyone else healed up with just the gauze packing and if so what what the results? Did they have to have any reconstruction?

         
      • Mechelle

        January 11, 2012 at 8:59 pm

        Just an update. I went to my PS last Wednesday, and recieved good news. He was pleased with the way I am healing. My wound is less than a 1/2 inch deep now, so he said I didn’t have to pack it with gauze anymore, just place dry gauze on top. I was so thrilled. I also ask if I would need reconstruction surgery after the wound completely healed. My PS said more than likely my breast would fill out and depending on the scar whether I would need reconstruction. But I just don’t think I have the nerve to go thru anything that might cause me to have to face necrosis again.

        I went back to work this past Monday. At first I was going to just work half days, but I bite the bullet and went back full time. I have to say, I have slept good at night….ha ha. I have been tired when I get home. I have a desk job but after being off for several weeks I guess my body is really out of shape.

        I am so thankful for the support I have recieved from this site. Thanks soooo much Maria.

         
  51. Sharon

    January 3, 2012 at 7:43 am

    Thank you so much for being so brave and shaing your experiences. I am 35 and I have had breast cancer twice over the last two years, in the same breast My original treatment was a lumpectomy followed by chemotherapy and radio therapy then about 6 weeks ago i was diagnosed with Padgets disease of the nipple and three weeks ago I had a mastectomy with immediate reconstruction using a DIEP flap. Flap failure has been one of my biggest worries and I have been constantly trying to find information and pictures showing what this looks like so I can put my mind at rest. My breast is painful and quite solid but there is no discolouration so I am pretty confident I am going to be ok. I wish every one of you all the best for the future and remember to keep positive and strong.

     
    • Maria_Myrback

      January 3, 2012 at 11:47 am

      Sharon, after my latissimus flap reconstruction, both breasts were solid like yours but the tissue softened over time to the point that now you can’t tell (aside from the scars, of course) that they were never not my breasts. They bounce naturally and have the soft, squishiness of a 40-something year old woman’s breasts. It sounds like even though you’ve been through a major ordeal, your new boobie will be just fine :-)

       
  52. Debby

    January 11, 2012 at 5:39 pm

    I am from the uk and was diagnosed with breast cancer in september. I had to have a masectomy and decided to have reconstruction at the same time as I did not want to go back and have another operation. This was done in October. But due to an infection (Necrosis) I had to have several dressing changes and then it was decided that I should have a debridement and skin graft. which was done Nov 12th. I am pleased that the skin graft has worked but the result is not very nice to look at. My scar underneath my breast is tight and the skin graft area is thick skin the scar on my back is tight as well. I have a loving husband who has been to every appointment and has seen me at my worst.

    I am so glad I have found this tonight, I have read everyone of the comments and some have reduced me to tears. Maria you are a saint for posting the pictures. I am going to take a few of myself and post them, these are after my skin graft and where the skin has healed, still not a pretty sight, but I know it is healing.
    I start Chemo next week to mop up any hidden devils! and my prognosis is good. Once gain thanks for taking the time to start this off you are a brave lady

     
    • Maria_Myrback

      January 11, 2012 at 5:48 pm

      Debby;

      Thanks for sharing your story. Necrosis is a difficult thing to deal with. Even moreso after dealing with cancer treatments. If you’d like me to post your photos along with a detailed version of your story, please email it to me at boobcast@gmail.com

      Don’t give up on the skin graft yet. It’s very early in the healing process still. It takes about six months to a year before you get your final result. And even then, the underlying tissue is still regenerating nerves and such. So chin up. You’re going to be great!

       
  53. Joy

    January 21, 2012 at 12:02 am

    Thank you for posting. I had a breast reduction 4 weeks ago. I have a wonderful doctor, but I had difficulty understanding what was happening just a few days after surgery. Everything else I saw or have referenced since, was written for healthcare professionals instead of regular everyday people. Thank you so much.
    Due to the extreme swelling on my one side I just had a second surgery to remove my dead nipple. Luckily I didn’t lose much more & I have 1 more surgery to create a new nipple. Without your reference I don’t know if I would have understood that contacting my doctor before my appointment was important.

     
  54. Margaret

    May 27, 2012 at 2:08 am

    I have just read your whole story Myra and that of the ladies who have posted above. And I need to say THANKYOU…. I am not alone…

    I too had a Breast Reduction last September which went wrong. I had, had a breast reduction about 35 years ago and as a result the blood supply was coming from a different area, and my now PS took it all away with the second reduction. I have to say my PS did inform me that there could be complications at the first consultation, due to it being a second reduction, but I really thought I would be OK.

    Straight after my op my Dr told me that my nipples were not looking good and he was worried they were going to die. I took the news pretty good and for 2 weeks we fought to save them. The left side finally became pink, but the right got darker and had to be removed. Back into hospital I went, but unfortunately when the Dr came to see me after that operation, he told me that 1/2 my breast had also died, and had to be removed…. I was also had a Vac attached to my open right breast.
    The Vac didn’t work as well as my Dr hoped so I had another another 2 operations to debride my tiny little right breast, and also to have a skin graft on the left breast, as there had been skin seperation on the ‘T’ section. There was also a lot of dead tissue in the left breast, but he decided not to open it up at this stage, but to wait to see if my body would break it down.

    I did a lot of research before I had this operation, and am very happy I chose my wonderful PS. He has begun Reconstruction already, and I have an expander under my right breast, and he also took out the dead tissue in the left breast. I am having the expander swapped over for the implant in about 3 weeks, then will have a nipple reconstruction after I have healed. I will also be having an implant placed under my left breast to make them the same size, and perhaps another operation if any more twigging is needed.

    Like everyone else here I had so many mixed emotions. I DID THIS TO MYSELF!!!!!
    All I wanted was to relieve the massive backaches, neckaches and headaces I was suffering from, and of course to have a smaller boobs. I was 36H After the removal of the all the dead tissue, my right breast was an ‘A’ cup and my left side is a ‘B’. I hope to be a 36C when the reconstruction is finished.

     
  55. Monica

    June 23, 2012 at 1:09 pm

    I just want to say thank u for the photos. I just had a BR 5-25-12 and after a week I noticed both breast turning purple and black. At firs I thought it was bruising but then it turned hard like a scab but black. I told my husband it looked like dead skin. When I went to dr he said he was gonna monitor me closely and put me in an antibiotic and did a swab of it and sent to get analyzed. Once I got results he changed my antibiotics to cipro

     
  56. Monica

    June 23, 2012 at 1:18 pm

    I just want to say thank u for the photos. I just had a BR 5-25-12 and after a week I noticed both breast turning purple and black. At first I thought it was bruising but then it turned hard like a scab but black. I told my husband it looked like dead skin. When I went to dr he said he was gonna monitor me closely and put me in an antibiotic and did a swab of it and sent to get analyzed. Once I got results he changed my antibiotics to cipro because of bacteria infection. I just went back Wednesday and he did a debridement of the dead skin. Man did that hurt when he hit some of the live tissue. So now I have open flesh wounds under both of my breast with just a little of the dead flesh there because some was too imbedded to remove. He told me to wash with saline and betadine and cover with cotton gauze but the gauze sticks to the wound due to it being open and oozy. I go back to dr this wednesday to c how it’s healing and talk possibly of skin grafting. How long does it usually take to heal and know how it will scar? Is there anything that can be put on the wound so the gauze doesn’t stick that I can ask dr about? I can’t do moist gauze cause I have to work and it will soak through. I feel that with the gauze sticking and having to take it off is pulling some of the live tissue off and making it worse.

     
  57. Cindy

    July 4, 2012 at 7:13 pm

    How can I share my photos, anonomously.

     
    • Maria_Myrback

      July 15, 2012 at 11:52 am

      Email them to me along with your story and I’ll see that they get published.

       
    • avril

      August 23, 2012 at 11:54 am

      yeah me too???

       
  58. jeni brady

    August 1, 2012 at 12:59 am

    Thank you Maria, et-al

    I will be honest, I had a complete melt down today when I went for a check-up with my PS’s partner. Hysterical…..yeah that would describe me today. But, I will back up a bit.

    Feb 1 2008 I was diagnosed with breast cancer, I was 35. Had a lumpectomy, chemo, radiation, 5 years tamoxifen. Hello menopause at 36. I also had the genetic testing done…..the doc’s were not shocked when it came back positive. So after all the treatments and crap that I went through I started the process of having a bi-lateral mastectomy…with possible reconstruction. While on that waiting list I also had a complete hysterectomy and oopherectomy. I already was in menopause…now was the time to do it. Plus it lowered my risk of recurrence. (ovarian and breast cancer are like cousins…you have one you are now related to the other one.)

    Fast forward to 2012 (yep took just about 3 years to get to this point), on June 19 of this year I finally got my surgery. Bi-lateral Mastectomies with Latismus Dorsi reconstruction with tissue expanders in.

    First couple days were a horror story…complete with the nurses ODing me on pain meds and knocking out my blood pressure too. (my sweetie is a 30 firefighter medic….said that BP was 0/70 and if he was in an ambulance they would consider me close to death.) First time I seen the wounds in the hospital I could see all the bruising and what ended up looking like blood blisters from blood rising to the surface. I was assured that this is normal. What made this even scarier is that my right side, where I had radiation, was about 10 times as bad as the left. The tissue did start to look dark purple-black and of course, like any sane woman, I freaked out!!! WTF….could the doctors not warn you about this happening….considering that they say its “normal.”?????

    Fast forward again to today. The flaps look healed on the outsides however toward my sternum there now seems to be a ridge with a bit of a gap. I was worried that they were separating, hence why I went in to see my PS’s partner. (PS is on vacation) He assured me it looked ok, keep using the ointment/antibiotic…blah blah blah. And then he said he would de-bride some of the areas. Now, my PS had done this about 10 days before…..I understood why and what he was doing. He just wanted to take off those hardened flaky pieces. I was ok with this….he wanted to have the nice pink skin underneath to get some air. However, when the partner seen me today….his de-bridement was completely different. NO warning, no real explanation, no reasoning ( till I called back 3 times later today). While my doc took just those pieces that were already coming off, the partner actually pulled off the other “scabby” pieces….some quite large. Nothing was infected, everything looked just like it did 10 days ago…but several areas were more healed (sorry about the grammar). I try not to look when the doctors are doing their thing. It freaks me out and I start crying, flinching etc. but when he said he was done I looked down and here was all this gauze there, all full of blood. ARG wtf, I have not had any blood coming through at all since the surgery.

    So, bunches of blood on my chest…and then the nurse takes these thin (non stick…haha) gauze strips and paper tapes my chest up. For pete’s sake my freaking skin was finally healed up :o)
    I was rather annoyed when I had to ask her to put some more gauze etc on me……its freaking July, its warm out, I am only wearing a t-shirt….and now I have blood leaking all over my chest. ARG. (sorry, I am just so upset and frustrated tonight.)

    So, when I stood up to get dressed I could see some of the hole’s in my breasts now. those strips of non-stick gauze covered maybe 2/3′s of the wound. Guess I was suppose to just hope that my bra/cami and t-shirt would catch the rest. I was very upset there in the room and frankly the nurse was no help. “Hon its just going to take time”……-But I look awful, this looks like a horror movie…it looks bad…”No Hon, it looks good. this is normal…it just takes time”

    Anyone ever wanted to tell the nurse to just F-off???? I know they mean well with the text book response, but come on. I can see my fatty tissue , I am bleeding, I have huge gaping holes on both breasts and the best you got is “it takes time”?????

    So, tonight, after I calmed down, I took to the internet and found all of you. I wish wish wish that I had been forewarned that this was a possibility. My doctors know I am one of those people who has to have all the info before I do something. research is my friend. But this, blackened dying skin……the shock of it is not something I would wish on my worst enemy. There are lots of breast cancer info sites out there, breast surgery sites, even PS breast sites…….not once have I even found information about this necrosis.

    Today when I seen what I looked like after this de-bridement….I just broke down. I just looked at them and said I have had enough. I really would like to just take out the expanders and you people close me up.

    Thank you Maria. My scars and wounds might not look exactly like yours but I know this freaked out feeling is something I have in common with the other ladies on here. I dont know how you do it. Dont know how any one does this.

    So, again thank you to all of you. I just might get some sleep tonight after reading all your stories and courageous words. Thank you for letting me vent too.

    Jeni

     
  59. avril

    August 23, 2012 at 11:53 am

    i was always told i had breast abscess, seen these pictures i think this is what i had, if you could send me on your e-mail i could send you photos, i also had contracted mrsa

     
  60. Paula

    August 24, 2012 at 3:46 pm

    I have read these comments more than once over the last six months and I want to share my story. I had breast reduction in December 2011. Back in 1963 when I was almost a teenage I had open hear surgery. I was cut in a U-shape around the right breast or where the breast would be once I got them. Over the years, I didn’t have a lot of sensation in that breast and nipple. When I met with my PS for the first time we talked about it and that was that. 3 days after my reduction (I went from a GG cup to a B+/C- cup) I went to the dr’s to have my drains taken out. The nurse took off some of the bandages and I noticed that my right nipple was purple. The nurse called me at home after talking with the doctor and I met her at the hospital. At that time she didnt use the word “necrosis” she just told me that the nerves were not connecting back to the nipple and needed some help. She ended up giving me nitro cream that I put on the nipple 3 times a day. A week later the areola around my nipple turned black. We continued with the cream and then the black turned to a hard scab. It was at that time that the PS used the word “necrosis”. She told me that the scab would fall off and then we would be able to determine the next step. Obviously we were trying to save the nipple. By this time I had been off 3 weeks from work and I was ready to go back. My surgery was a breeze. I had very little pain; took no meds other than Tylenol. My left side healed up right away and it was perfect. I go back to work right after the first of the year, and all of a sudden under my bandage I feel wet and the smell was awful. I check it out in the ladies room and the liquid is squirting out under the black scab. I almost lost it. I left work and went directly to the dr’s office — I also ended out of work again for another 4 weeks. By then I had skin and fat/tissue necrosis. The smell would gag me and it was so oily that it was ruining my clothes.

    The scab would not fall off and to treat the wound, my dr debrided it — 3 different times. Then we had to pack it to soak up all that tissue necrosis (wet/dry bandages). Had to go on antibiotics because I started to run a fever. I cannot remember being so depressed in my entire life. I was so sorry that I had the surgery. I cried all day every day for 2 weeks.

    Anyway, after the wound started to dry up, all I could see around the nipple was pink hamburger (it was a raw open wound). Dr said that was a good thing. It took another 3 weeks for the skin around my nipple to heal. The skin healed too high on the nipple and I no longer had an areola. I ended up talking with a therapist just to get me through this.

    I had ugly, heavy breasts to begin with and now I have nice perky breasts with the right side without an areola and the nipple is inverted instead of pointing out. It took me months before I was finally happy that I had the surgery. You do get through it; it is so hard but you will move on. Yes, the dr wants to make it pretty and do a skin graft, etc., but she cannot guarantee me that the same thing won’t happen again. I’m at the age where it doesn’t matter and I refuse to go in and have additional surgery performed on this breast. I’m fine now…it was a long road to get me where I am today.

     
  61. R. L Eagle

    November 9, 2012 at 10:26 pm

    Anybody have any suggestions on how to pack the area. The nurse put the packing in the office but when I came home to do it…. just couldn’t seem to do it….it is hard to see those areas when they are below the breast. Would it be easier if the packing was wet? She did it with dry packing, said the packing was to absorb the moisture in the area. I have read so much and heard so much I am very confused. I can’t seem to put the packing in my tiny hole I have in my two breasts after breast reduction. I had necrosis on the right breast and a little on the left breast. PS said I will be fine but my right breast is really red and ugly now. I am not in pain but very sad at the way I look now. My surgery was 1 month ago.

     
    • Maria_Myrback

      November 10, 2012 at 10:53 am

      Get sterile saline solution and sterile gauze from your ps. Wet the gauze with the saline, wring it out so it’s damp but not dripping and pack it losely in the wound then use a piece of dry gauze and paper tape to cover it. Be sure to wash your hands with antibacterial soap first. The last thing you need is an infection. Good luck to you. Please feel free to ask more questions.

       
    • Jeni

      November 10, 2012 at 7:04 pm

      I have the same thing going on. I have been having to pack my incisions (both sides) for about 8 weeks. necrosis is common and your PS it right….it does all heal up and will look better…just takes time. I am almost done with having to pack.

      I have packing that I got from the PS and also homecare (I am in Alberta….not sure if you have that where you are). I am using a packing that has antimicrobial stuff in it. And its been working great. I have purchased sterile Q-tips from a health care supply store. My hubby is a paramedic so he was doing the packing in the beginning. I have been doing it myself for a month now. I use the bathroom mirror so I can see everything I need to see. The sterile q-tips work great. with the antimicrobial packing you dont us saline first. it is put in dry. My PS also has me using MEPILEX gauze pads for over the packed wounds. It is quite expensive if you do not have benefit coverage. However, it is a special gauze pad and it WORKS!! It is a thick foam about (1/4″), no adhesive either. it does slight stick to your skin/wound and will keep it moist while healing…but not wet. My PS also has me using bactroban (spelling??) it is an ointment (antimicrobial) that I use around the packed wound and on the rest of where my incisions are/were. Works so well that I have had no infections at all. I had a double mastectomy and latismuss dorsi reconstruction in June 2012.

      You can also get a prescription from your PS for the packing materials.

       
    • Lori

      November 11, 2012 at 5:11 pm

      It has to be dry.. Nurse is right. I take I had exactly the same necrosis on both breaststroke and packing on my right side. The only I had someone pack for me… Husband, and daughter…. Time to ask for help… There was no way I could have reached….

      Best thing I did was eat healthy… And listened to bellaruth naperastek healing guided imagery cds…

      Ur mental state is critical… Speeds the healing process… My healing took 7 months.. But necrosis was deep and huge…. Total healing in a year…

      Had I known it could take that long I would have relaxed more… And gone w the flow…

      U will heal…. Under the skin takes time to heal… I had medical honey from wound care… It helped a great deal…. Top layer is last to heal so don’t get discouraged… Body knows what to do… Just feed it fresh healthy food…. Love quality and u will get ur health back….

      I promise u… Email me if u want… Happy to support u

      Loriduvpreston@gmail.com
      Lori

       
    • Maria_Myrback

      November 11, 2012 at 5:16 pm

      The reason I mentioned wet packing is that was what my ps had me do. Dr. X never gave me an antibacterial cream. It sounds like you’re being taken care of.

       
    • Claudia

      November 11, 2012 at 5:26 pm

      I had a 10 cm wound that would not heal and after seing 3 wound specialist what finally worked was sitting in a hot jacuzzi every day for 15 mins (or pool). Chlorine helps closing wounds and then flushing the wound 3 times in a row with a large syringe 1/3 hydrogen prioxide, 2/3 distilled water. Wound closed after 2 weeks.

      Good luck. Try not to get too discouraged. You will heal. Rest and eat well.

       
  62. K

    November 28, 2012 at 1:23 pm

    Thank you for posting this. I had a prophylactic mastectomy due to the BRCA2 mutation, and went through debridement of necrotic skin yesterday. I’m kind of a mess. I’m only 27 and did this preventatively, and now I’m scared I will never be able to have reconstruction. My wounds aren’t as large as those in your photos, but having open wounds of any size is pretty freaky. I hate that I did this to myself and may never look normal again but I am trying to be hopeful since it sounds like things did work out for you in the end. Thank you for sharing your experience!

     
  63. linda mitchell

    December 8, 2012 at 8:14 am

    I am going thru the samething and i do feel alone. How does your breast look now?

     
    • Maria_Myrback

      December 8, 2012 at 9:34 am

      The blog is organized by date. If you look at April, May and June of the second year, you can see what The Twins look like after mound reconstruction. My situation was a pretty severe so my reconstruction surgeon used the latissimus flap technique for both sides.

       
  64. Tammy

    December 27, 2012 at 2:47 pm

    I want to thank you for these pictures. I am going through this now myself. Had a double masectomy on 12/12/12 and both breast have this problem going on and I didn’t know what is was. All the dr said was keep putting antibiotic cream on them. Now i know it has a name to it. Mastectomy skin necrosis. Now I can do more research and be better informed when I talk to my dr. On 1/04/13

     
  65. Jennie

    February 3, 2013 at 3:49 pm

    This is severe pic of necrosis. I believe Sandy has this. She has to go to Nashville. So sotr

     
  66. Michelle

    February 28, 2013 at 6:26 am

    1/25/13 I was so excited as that was the day I was going in to have a Benelli lift and 550CC silicone gel high profile implants. My PS and I spoke several times prior to my surgery date as to what I wanted. I expressed to him several times that I wanted the implants under the muscle. The surgery went well and I wasn’t in any pain the first 2 days went the following Monday for my post op appointment and he removed the surgical bra still everything was fine very little pain. When I went back a few days later the PS came in felt my breast and at that time I asked why they were red and warm to the touch. I also asked if he could remove the bandage that was around my nipple he stated that it had to stay on for two weeks. I asked if we could at least change it as it had alot of dried blood and was leaking a yellow/green fluid. He removed the bandage and when I looked in the mirror I wanted to cry. Both of my areolas were surrounded by black scabs or so I thought. My PS said it was very normal and I asked why I had creases or puckered skin around that area as well. He said it was due to the lift he had removed skin to give the lift and when he placed the permenant surture as you do with the Benelli left it caused tension and that as the skin stretched that would all go away.So I thought nothing of it. A day later the pain started it was really bad I called the after hours number and my PS called me back he called me in a new pain med. I explained to him that the pain was really bad and the black area on my left breast was getting bigger this was on a sat he told me he to meet him at the office the next morning at 9:30 which was a Sunday. I was amazed that he came in on a day the office was closed to see me. He agreed that the area was getting larger on the left breast and it was red and hot both breast were. He then switched me to a different antibiotic. Several days past and the pain just kept getting worse so I called the PS again explained what was going on he asked that I come in to see him the next day. He asked that I text him a picture of both breast. I went in the next day and he had said the night before on the phone that if he needed to take them out he would so I wasn’t allowed to eat or drink anything. When I seen him that Monday he took a gauze pad wet it with peroxide and cleaned both breast off and said I would be fine. I had been in bed from Friday until that Monday only got up to use the bathroom and take my meds. That day he put me on three antibiotics and told me to use a triple antibiotic ointment and cover with a mon stick pad. He then said he was going out of town the following week and if I got worse and went to the ER they would admit me and remove the implants he also said if I called one of his partners they would do the same. I was scared by what he told me and managed to deal with the pain. He sent me a text while he was out of town asking how I was doing better, worse or the same. I told him the pain was a little better but the incision on my right breast was getting worse. I started researching and found out that the black stuff around my nipple wasnt a scab as he said it was it was dead skin that was caused by restricted blood due to the tension from the lift. I went in and seen him that wed and he again said it was nothing to be concerned about. This past Friday I was 3 weeks post op my incision has continued to spread and the bottom part is completely away from the nipple. I was in bed again all weekend because the pain was so bad. I was really scared as the incision was getting bigger and bigger each day. I sent him a picture of it and said this is how it looks as of now but it’s getting worse each day and that I could now see the breast tissue and the purse string suture used for the left he stated there was no way I could see the stitch and that he wanted to see me the next day. I began to get cold chills and was very sick to my stomach so I went to the ER the look on the nurses face and then the ER doc had the same look. The took my blood to check my white blood cell count and they also took a culture. They called my PS and he told them to have me follow up with him in his office the next day. So I go to his office and he begins to tell my blood work came back good so that meant the infection was just in the incision sites. He took the pad off and said wow your right that is the permenant suture you see, he then said we will clean that up. I then took the pad off of my right breast and showed him that the incision on that breast has holes in it now he looked at it and said well I know I have been telling you I wasn’t sure what was going on but now I think your body had a reaction to the stitch and that’s why it’s getting worse your body is trying to reject the foreign object he looked at my right breast again and said I will be back I’m going to poke around this area so he comes back in to the room I was in with a few instrument he made a noise after poking around. I said there are a few holes in the breast that was healing perfectly until the other day. All of the dead skin had fallen off and the scar looked great to be 3 weeks post op. I asked him what the little pink thing was poking out of one of the holes and he said well and I stopped him and said its a spitting stitch isn’t it and he said yes. I think he was shocked and he realized I had been doing some research. I felt this really bad tug and them heard a snip. He removed the permenant stitch from both breast and said since he took those out it should begin healing he said it would take a while and that I just had to be patient. This really bothered me because I paid money for a Benelli left and the reason we decided to do the benelli lift was so he could reduce the size of my areola and then place the implant in through that incision. The propose of the permenant stitch in the Benelli lift is to keep the areola from spreading out. I seen him Monday and that’s when he removed the sutures from both breast now my left breast is open all the way around the areola and the right breast went from two holes to the incision opening up all the way around as well. I am in so much pain and I have missed alot of work. I have two very complicated wounds and I found this blog this evening and I see everyone talking about wound care and all he has told me to do is clean them twice a day with peroxide and keep the dry pad on them. I am so upset I have had four children and I was looking forward to nice perky breast and I paid alot of money for a surgical nightmare. I have not been able to sleep for over 48 hours and when I’m at work I’m in so much pain. I have to go 8-10 hours a day with no pain meds while at work. I feel so selfish because I chose to have the surgery and since I had it I have had nothing but bad things come from it. I’m not able to enjoy time with my kids because the pain is so bad I come home from work and take my pain meds and go to bed. I am so blessed with an awesome husband that is caring and so supportive. I am so relieved to have found this blog I found myself asking what’s wrong with me because I couldn’t find anything where other people had the same issue. Please give me any thoughts or feedback that you think will help me while going through this healing process

     
  67. layla

    March 24, 2013 at 11:09 pm

    Thank you for sharing your story, I’ve searched online for a long time for a story/ pics similar to mine, thought I was the only one until I found this. I went through the same ordeal in 2000 with my breast reduction. The countless dr visits, and all the unpleasant physical changes in my breast made me feel less than beautiful. I had gangrene, a breast with a hole the size of an orange and many nights of tears. My husband kept complaining about this stench, but I was too disheartened and upset to share my ordeal with him. Worst thing was, I CHOSE to go through with this against his wishes. But for everyone who reads this, it does get better. You will heal, emotionally and physically. Talk to someone, don’t go through it alone. Whatever the doctor tells you to do for wound care, go above and beyond. When he told me to change the gauze in my breast 3xs a day, I changed it 5. I massaged, even when I was sore, to encourage circulation and healing. And I meditated. Positive thoughts do help. I do have permanent scars now, and the reconstructed nipple has sunken in because i refused an implant, but I still feel fortunate. My gangrene was systemic. I got better, so will you. I wish you a full recovery. Thanks again for your story.

     
    • Maria_Myrback

      March 24, 2013 at 11:41 pm

      Layla;

      Thank you for sharing your story. You’re right. It does get better. My situation was the reason I learned to love myself, scars, fat and deflated nipples included. You’re fortunate to have survived a systemic infection. I was lucky in that mine stayed localized. I hope you’re doing well now. Drop me a message if you ever need to talk. I’m here for all my readers because, as I’ve said time and again, you are not alone.

       
      • Michelle

        March 25, 2013 at 12:10 am

        I had a breast lift and implants 1/25/13 and I have gone through so much since then. My left breast had restricted blood flow due to the doc cutting too much skin when doing the breast lift. I had 550cc implants, which was to large for the amount if skin he cut. When closing the incision around my areola there was too much tension which resulted in Nercosis. I had it around both breast but my right breast healed with no issue. I have a huge wound where the bottom of my breast had separated from the niple. I went through the debriment two weeks ago and that left a hole in the wound where my implant could be seen. I have been scared and feel like I’m going through this all alone. I haven’t been much of mom or wife since my surgery. I try to act like everything is ok but so days I’m not sure they are. I am now doing the wet to drys twice a day and I’m hoping this ends soon. I was happy to find I am not the only one that has had this happen. See all the post and pictures has helped me realize that I’m not alone and with lots of time I will heal. Thanks for sharing.
        Michelle

         
  68. Monica

    April 20, 2013 at 11:14 pm

    I am so happy to have read all of the encounters. I had my BR on 3/5/13 going from a 38 DDD. I feel so much better as far asmy back and shoulders. But I do have so necrosis on my left breast and a little on the right. I saw this blister like thing on it and called my PS. They saw me the very next day. The cut the dead skin away and packed it Wednesday, I went back Friday and they did the same. I was to afraid to look at them until this morning. I felt so bad since I chose to have it, but I wanted to feel better, and I really do. I am able to wear shirts without a bra, tank tops and sin dresses too. I have to cover the wounds so that I will not leak on my clothes. After reading all of the encounters with necrosis I feel much better. I kept seeing me in the ER with this big hole on my breast. But I have sp much faith in God and I know that my healing has began.

    Monica

     
  69. Connie

    June 5, 2013 at 1:01 am

    I can so empathize with you. I had surgery four weeks ago for breast reduction. I also have issues with both breasts. I have severe necrosis in my right breast and the entire aerola turned to a black leather look. I have had a chance of losing my nipple and also have a pocket that is about a inch and a half and in one area an inch deep. I am having to pack the wound 2x a day and weekly debridement with my ps. Today I actually started gagging when I had to change the dressing and repack the wound! I am scared and even though my ps says I will be okay I have no confidence in this reassurance. Connie

     
  70. Chris

    June 7, 2013 at 9:44 pm

    I went through something very similar myself after removal of a breast papilloma (with a weird history of so far benign breast disease) and wound up getting an emergency debridement and an ID prognosis of E-Coli and Enterococcus. I never had so much pain in my life. Nurse came in at 1 and I was in surgery by 5 to save my life. I feel how much you went through going through what I went through myself. I am all better now and have very ramifications from these events of 5 years ago. Hang in there!

     
  71. pop

    June 17, 2013 at 4:32 pm

    im amazed at all of this. i thought i was the only one who is having these problems after my reduction. i lost a good portion including nipple and areola of my left breast. my problems and reconstruction have been going on for three years now. im almost done but now stitches keep pulling out of my areola i have been stitched up 4 times in less than two weeks. this whole process has taken a terrible toll on myself and my family. im quite sick of it all. im still hopeing for the best because thats what i have to do. i miss my old self though. i wish i had never had a reduction and just been happy with myself. i feel like by the time this is over with i will be to old to care. part of me is jokeing part of me is not. i admire each one of the women who have shared thier story here( and those who havent but where brave enough to seek out the answers they too need). i have experienced alot in my life but ive never had this type of worry for my self for so long

     
    • Marg

      July 30, 2013 at 7:15 pm

      Hi Pop, I just wanted to say I am going through what you have been through. I had a reduction too and lost most of my right breast including my nipple and have had it reconstructed, and am quite happy with it. My left breast struggled to survive the reduction as well, as there was lot of narcrosis in it, and this is the breast I am having trouble with in the reconstruction process. I now have my second implant in it, and I am not happy as it is sitting too high. The first implant literealy fell out.of the pocket, I had my reduction in Sept 2011 so nearly 2 years for me, and a total of 8 surgeries. Unlike you I am not sorry I did this to myself, as I really am loving being this size. I was a 16J now am 16C, Love the freedom, hate the surgeries…
      Good luck to you I hope it is not much longer till you are finished and feel better about yourself….

       
    • Sarah

      July 31, 2013 at 11:49 am

      Mine has been going on for over 2 years now and believe it or not, am lying in my hospital bed in Thailand as I write this at the moment.
      Yes, I had another mammoplasty 6 days ago. And that also went wrong!
      After my removal of way too big implants, followed by a reduction and lift, fat necrosis, a revision of that reduction, a year long wait and finally augementation 6days ago. Which I hoped would be my last surgery by the way.
      From the look of things, I don’t think so.

      What hurts me the most is I can hardly afford it. Also although my boobs were saggy and ugly, I could still have lived with them. Atleast they had 2 full nipples.
      Only if I was satisfied with how I looked. But I wasn’t.

      And 2half years ago, aged 24, I took my first trip to Thailand . A trip I would live to regret for the rest of my life.

      Anyway here I am in my hospital bed with my new 265 cc silicone implants. My right breast much bigger than the lefty, both without nipples, righty hard and swollen , sad and barely 27 years old but close to suicide.

       
      • Hopeful

        August 1, 2013 at 1:08 am

        Dear Sarah,
        I have been through Breast Abscess + necrosis due to mastitis and understand how you feel. Its not your fault, anyone can get this. In my case, it was a case of breast feeding gone wrong. Please don’t blame yourself, you did this because you love yourself enough to improve whatever you thought you could. If it went wrong, its just bad luck, but just that. If celebrities like Angelina Jolie can get double mastectomy just to AVOID cancer.. it is an example that women are much much more inside than outside. Our bodies are our assets, but not the core of our selves. The core of a woman is how she feels inside. Suicide takes away all that COULD be good. Please cheer up, life will definitely get better and beautiful.
        I had almost lost my left breast, it is still about half of the size of right. And I was going through a divorce then too. A newborn baby, divorce, breast necrosis, surgeries, daily dressings, a new job, struggling to keep up with life, I never thought that life could be normal again. But 2 years later, I ve healed, my soul has healed, and though my breast is still scarred, small, and saggy, I met and found a man who loves me as a person, not as a body. Life could not be better. Just hang on there and focus on improving your life.
        You are here, not because you were dissatisfied with your breasts, but because you wanted something better. Do not lose sight of this goal. Get yourself a new beautiful life. This obstacle is temporary. God bless you.

         
      • Sarah

        August 2, 2013 at 2:59 am

        Dear hopeful,
        Thanks for the kinds word of encouragement . I really appreciate. thank you. I feel so alone right now. Nobody to talk to and understand what am going through. The pain which is more emotional than physical .
        I can’t tell my mother as she has enough to worry about already. And my boyfriend left me – when I lost my nipples. He called me crippled and half a woman. He said he can’t be with a woman without nipples. Truth is this surgery has taken a lot from me,
        I don’t think I can commit suicide, am too cowardly for that .

        Anyway, am still in the hospital. My right breast being drained of Hematoma . 280cc of blood out this morning and still very painful.
        I just hope and pray that I won’t have to go back into the operating room.

        You are very lucky to have found a man who loves you for who you are. At the end of the day, that’s all am hoping for too. That maybe one day, I will learn to live again.
        Thanks.

         
  72. Jen

    June 19, 2013 at 3:40 pm

    I have been searching for necrosis of the nipple ALL DAY and have found so very little. I had my milk ducts removed and a tumor.. my nipple is now completely black. The areola is bruised but the nipple is hard and black. I get shooting pains and then complete numbness. I have to see the surgeon again this friday and I feel so sad and so alone. THANK you for posting your pics and also for all those who have replied to her pictures because I no longer feel so alone. THANK YOU ALL.

     
  73. Stacey

    August 29, 2013 at 1:34 pm

    I have skimmed through others’ comments and, whilst slightly encouraged by others’ progress, I am still devastated by what is happening to me.

    I had a reduction and uplift, and within two weeks of the surgery, despite being given an immediate course of antibiotics, developed an enterococcus infection in both breasts. Redness, malodor, heat, oozing gunk, numbness at sight but shooting pains elsewhere in the breasts.

    After pestering several doctors I managed to obtain flucloxacillin. A week within finishing that course, despite following every correct protocol, the infection came straight back, and the breast is now oozing several shades of stinky gunk- so much in fact that it’s seeping through two layers of dressings. A whole load of pus and what appears to be gangrene, and BLACK gunk too. At present, minor tissue necrosis has been diagnosed, but the surgeon has not (yet) agreed to remove the dying parts of my breasts.

    I am so frightened and lost. This has been going on for a month now and is just getting worse and worse. I am also finding it harder to procure more antibiotics, as the doctors and surgeon do not want me to build up a resistance.

    I have always been slow to heal, and have developed minor infections from lesser operations, but this is something entirely new. If I must be honest, I am feeling utterly hopeless because this situation seems never ending. I am terrififed the next time it becomes infected, it will take longer to get antibiotics and then the infection will go systemic and I will end up paralysed or blind or die horribly. Please, can ANYONE reassure me anything positive?

     
  74. Stacey

    August 29, 2013 at 2:00 pm

    I am so stressed by all this that I forgot to mention a crucial detail: there are four dime sized holes in my breasts- two on each side. They are continuing to get larger. Sorry.

     
    • RPP

      September 5, 2013 at 12:54 pm

      Stacey, I dont have any insights other than I think you must not rest until you get action from your PS or another action NOW, and that includes going to emergency and get emergency surgery. Your post was 6 days ago so I assume that you have by now done that. As bad as it mat seem to you, it can be corrected. I will be wishing you a great recovery, all the best of luck.

       
  75. Jeany Rios

    September 1, 2013 at 3:25 am

    OMG! My 17 year old underwent breast reduction surgery on August 9th 2013. Dr says that she will be fine but we think is just getting worst. I would like to show the pictures of her Breast Necrosis to a person who has suffered through this and would be will to tell me their NONE medical opinion. My name is Jeany email jeanyrios@yahoo.com.

     
  76. Tracy

    February 10, 2014 at 2:41 pm

    Thank you for sharing these. I am 17 days post DIEP flap and have some concerns.

     

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