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PREPARING FOR YOUR MASTECTOMY:

WHAT TO KNOW

It can feel like a lot to juggle when you’re trying to prepare for an upcoming surgery. If you or your loved ones are in the planning stages, use this guide to prepare for your first few days home. 

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Setting Up Your Space

I highly recommend relaxing in a recliner.

If you do not have one, don’t be afraid to rent one or borrow one from a family member or friend for the first couple of weeks.

You will need to rest in an elevated position, so a comfy recliner can be the perfect place for a nap or nighttime rest if sleeping in your bed is challenging at first. 

 

 

Sleeping Supports

You’ll need to rest in an elevated position in your bed.

Wonderful sleeping options range from simple wedges to more comprehensive pillow systems. 

 

 

A Medicine Administration System

There can be a lot of meds to keep track of in the early recovery days.

Ensure you have a system to keep track of what medications you need and when.

We created a simple but effective medicine administration system using a kitchen baking tin and print-out medicine trackers.

 

Clothing

 

1. Button up pajamas with stretchy waistbands

In the early days, it’s difficult to move your arms well. I had to get some help pulling my pants down or changing my clothes.

Having a stretchy waistband allows you to pull your pants up and down on your own without putting too much pressure on those muscles. If you find that you don’t need them in the hospital, you can bring them home and slip into them to rest.

I love Kelley Bee PJs, especially since they are stretchy, have drain , and are super soft! 

 

2. A cozy robe

If you are having surgery when it’s chilly out or you just like to have a little extra layering while you’re home and resting,

I highly recommend the Gownies recovery robe

 

3. Zipper hoodies

For those that enjoy hoodies or if you want to go out for a walk or to the store, these can be great for every day wear. Kelly Bee offers nice quality zip ups with drain holders. 

 

 

Additional Recovery Items

 

1. Mastectomy pillow

I was lucky enough to receive a handful of mastectomy pillows from friends who no longer need theirs and use them to prop up my arms in my recliner and anywhere else I was sitting in those early days.

Pink Pepper Co. and William & Flo are highly recommended by lots of patients.

I used both brands and loved them. 

 

2. Aquaphor or rich lotions

Don’t be surprised if your skin often reacts to the anesthesia and all that you’ve been through.

You might develop rashes or non-itchy bumps following surgery.

Always check with your doctor if this happens.

However, Aquaphor or a rich lotion (and a little patience) might be all you need to keep your skin feeling calmer and hydrated. 

 

3. Drain holders for the shower

You’ll need a way to hold your drains during shower time.

A lanyard, clear fanny pack, or mesh holders are great options for those first two weeks. 

 

 

Do you have an item that you think would be a hit on this list? Send us a message!

 

Happy recovery! 

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