Mastectomy

Care After

HOME CARE

  • ExitCare Image Care for your wound after the bandages are off as told by your doctor.

  • Put soft padding such as gauze, soft cloth, or a nursing pad over your wound if you wear a bra.

  • Ask your doctor about groups that can help you with any emotions you may have after the surgery.

  • Exercise your arm and shoulder as told by your doctor.

  • Place your hands on a wall. Use your fingers to "climb the wall." Reach as high as you can until you feel a stretch. When you are not exercising, keep your arm raised (elevated).

  • When sitting or lying down, put your arm up on pillows or rolled blankets.

  • D o not use your arm to lift or push anything heavier than 10 pounds (about one gallon of milk ) for the first 6 weeks.

  • Always take good care of the arm on the side that the breast was removed.

  • Never let anyone take your blood pressure, draw blood, or give you a shot in that arm.

  • Do not get even a small cut on that arm or hand. Use a thimble when you sew. Wear heavy gloves when you garden.

  • Use insect repellent on that arm if outside.

  • Do not use a razor to shave that underarm. You should use only an electric shaver.

  • Do not burn that arm. Use a glove when you reach into the oven. Cover your arm with a towel or wear a long-sleeved shirt when you are out in the sun.

  • Wear your watch and other jewelry on the other arm.

  • Wear a loose fitting rubber glove when you wash the dishes. Do not leave your hand in water for a long time, especially when you use detergents.

  • Do not cut your cuticles or hang nails. Push cuticles back with a towel after you take a bath.

  • Carry your purse or any heavy objects in the other arm.

GET HELP RIGHT AWAY IF:

  • Your arm becomes very puffy (swollen).

  • You have redness or pain at the wound site.

  • There is a bad smell coming from the wound.

  • Thre is yellowish white fluid (pus) coming from your wound.

  • You have a fever.

MAKE SURE YOU:

  • Understand these instructions.

  • Will watch your condition.

  • Will get help right away if you are not doing well or get worse.