May 25th was my surgery day, so we find ourselves at one month post op. I am noticing that I feel better, seemingly, in leaps and bounds now. The last real bit of soreness or muscle discomfort comes from the part of my pecs that connect my chest to my arms, and only if I am reaching really high do I feel that burning sensation I used to feel with almost any arm movement at all.
There is still some residual swelling under my armpits, and this swelling is hard to the touch–perhaps this isn’t swelling but my burgeoning pectoral muscles? Unlikely, but I can dream! My nipples are still a bit askew, but are getting closer and closer to even.
I am putting Vasoline on my nipples twice daily, putting a small non-stick bandage over them, and wearing a sports bra to keep them in place, because as you can see in the pictures, I am developing some sweet red welts in reaction to the tape I was using to keep the bandages and silicone strips in place. I go topless when I am at home, but when going out or to bed I wear the bandages and bra over the greased up nipples.
Dr. Medalie’s nurse advised me to wear the silicone strips on the incision lines for 12 hours a day, and of course longer won’t hurt, but given that I have to put a bra on to keep them in place, I just wear them overnight, and for a few hours in the morning before the shower, to get my 12 hours in. This goes on for at least 3 weeks, maybe longer, depending on how I feel about it.
My mood is stable, and fine. I have less than a week before I go back to work, and for this I am glad. I look forward to my regular routine and to getting some of my strength back that I built up from the kind of physical work I do. I also look forward to getting back into the gym–albeit at much lighter weights than I was using pre-surgery. And regular paychecks will be pretty sweet, too.
One Month Post-Op Pictures
For comparison, this was the first time we saw my new chest, 6 days post-op:
Overall, I am pleased with the results so far, with the understanding that I have a lot more healing to do before all is settled by way of “results.”
Be nice to yourselves,
Your Pal Eli