Definition of "mastectomy."
It is an excision in the breast performed to prevent the spread of cancer.
The Surgery performed depends on the type and location of the cancer.
Types of mastectomies.
Lumpectomy is the removal of just the tumor with a bit of surrounding tissue.
A partial mastectomy is the removal of a wedge of normal tissue.
A total or simple mastectomy is the removal of the entire breast.
A modified radical mastectomy is the removal of the breast and the axillary lymph nodes.
A radical mastectomy is the removal of the breast, the axillary lymph nodes, and the pectoralis muscle.
Factors that may increase the risk of breast cancer.
Positive family history of breast cancer.
Onset of menstruation before age 12.
Late age at menopause.
Use of hormonal therapy or oral contraceptives.
First pregnancy after age 30.
Never giving birth.
Support group, Reach for Recovery.
Provides opportunity to talk to another person who has had a mastectomy.
Provides brochures to show exercises, breast prosthesis information, etc.
Provides a free temporary fluff prosthesis until the client is ready for weighted prothesis.
Typical exercises using full range of motion.
Wall climbing (client sits next to the wall and moves both hands up the wall until pain occurs).
Pendulum arm swinging (client bends at the waist and swings arms from side to side without bending the elbows).
Rope pulling (client hangs a rope over the door and pulls one end of the string at a time, which raises the other arm).
Elbow spread (client locks hand behind the neck, then gradually brings elbows together).
Assess incision daily.
Keep area clean and dry.
Call physician if signs and symptoms of infection occur.
Yellow, thick drainage from incision.
Fever higher than 100.
Increased drainage or bleeding.
Prevention of complications.
Lymphedema (an accumulation of fluid) in arm.
Avoid constrictive clothing, jewelry, or wristwatch on affected arm.
Don't allow blood pressure to be taken on affected arm.
Elevate arm frequently to prevent swelling.
Avoid carrying heavy objects on affected arm.
Avoid injury, burns, or trauma to affected arm.
Perform daily hygiene.
Avoid cuts in skin.
Continue to do self-breast exams.
Have regular medical checkups.