Are you dealing with post mastectomy pain? Are you seeking effective treatment for post mastectomy pain? You are at the right place. Consult Dr. Garvit Chitkara, a competent breast cancer surgeon in Mumbai. He can provide effective solutions to manage and alleviate this pain.
Breast cancer, a formidable adversary for many women, often necessitates surgical interventions like mastectomy to eliminate the disease. While these surgeries are crucial steps in battling breast cancer, they can bring about their own set of challenges, one of which is post mastectomy pain.
Post mastectomy pain refers to the discomfort experienced after surgically removing one or both breasts. This pain can manifest in various forms, such as sharp, shooting pain or a persistent ache.
“While some degree of discomfort is to be expected as the body heals from surgery, prolonged and severe pain should not be ignored”, advises Dr. Garvit Chitkara, one of the leading breast cancer surgeon in Mumbai. “Seeking timely medical attention and guidance can make all the difference in managing pain and achieving a smoother recovery.”
In this blog, we will delve into the causes of post-mastectomy pain, when to seek medical assistance, available treatments, and expert insights from Dr. Garvit Chitkara, a renowned breast oncology surgeon in Mumbai.
Post mastectomy pain is a prevalent occurrence and can present itself in diverse ways. While some may experience mild discomfort, others could encounter intense and persistent pain. The discomfort becomes noticeable a few hours after the surgery for many individuals. There are also cases where patients report experiencing pain 3 weeks after mastectomy.
Several factors contribute to mastectomy pain after surgery, including:
Yes, you read it right.
Now let’s see when you should consult a doctor?
“If you are experiencing post-mastectomy pain, knowing when to seek medical attention is crucial. Timely intervention can help identify the underlying cause and prevent further complications”, explains Dr. Garvit Chitkara, a renowned expert for breast surgery in Mumbai.
Reach out to a medical professional if you encounter:
Treatment for post mastectomy pain depends on its severity and underlying causes. Your doctor might recommend:
Pain management often begins with medications that alleviate discomfort and inflammation. Over-the-counter pain relievers like acetaminophen or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) can relieve mild to moderate pain. In severe cases, doctors may recommend prescription pain medications based on the patient’s pain level and medical history.
It involves injecting local anesthetics or other medications around affected nerves to block pain signals temporarily. This approach can provide immediate and targeted pain relief, particularly for nerve-related chronic pain after mastectomy.
“Only trained medical professionals administer nerve blocks, which can effectively manage acute pain”, explains Dr. Garvit Chitkara.
Physical therapy plays a crucial role in promoting mobility and reducing pain after a mastectomy. Under the guidance of a physiotherapist, patients can engage in gentle activities tailored to their condition and progress as they heal. It can help maintain or improve their range of motion, prevent muscle stiffness, and reduce the risk of developing scar tissue adhesions.
TENS is a non-invasive technique that utilizes mild electrical currents to stimulate nerves and disrupt pain signals. A small device with electrodes is placed on the skin near the affected area, and controlled electrical pulses are delivered. TENS can provide temporary pain relief by promoting the release of endorphins, the body’s natural painkillers.
If post mastectomy pain is primarily nerve-related, your doctor may prescribe medications specifically targeting nerve pain (neuropathic pain). These medications, such as certain antidepressants or anticonvulsants, alter nerve signalling and can help manage persistent nerve-related pain.
Scar tissue formation can contribute to discomfort and restricted movement after mastectomy. Medical interventions such as silicone gel sheets, massage techniques, and topical creams can be recommended. These can help minimize scar tissue formation and improve the overall appearance and feel of scars.
This non-invasive therapy involves applying electromagnetic pulses to the affected area. It potentially aids in pain reduction and tissue healing.
In some cases, further surgical interventions such as scar tissue removal or nerve decompression may address complications causing persistent pain.
Emotional and psychological support, including counselling and participation in breast cancer support groups, can positively impact pain perception and coping strategies.
Consult your healthcare provider before pursuing any specific treatment or intervention, as the appropriate approach will depend on your condition and medical history.
While post mastectomy pain can be a challenging aspect of breast cancer treatment, it is important to remember that effective solutions are available. By understanding the causes of post mastectomy pain, seeking timely medical attention, and embracing the multidisciplinary approach offered by experts like Dr. Garvit Chitkara, individuals can confidently navigate their recovery journey and pave the way for a healthier, pain-free future.
Q1: When should I consult a doctor for post-mastectomy pain?
A: If your pain is severe, worsening, or interfering with daily activities, it is time to consult a doctor. Seek help from an expert breast cancer surgeon in Mumbai for specialized care.
Q2: Can nerve pain after mastectomy be treated?
A: Yes, nerve pain can be managed through various treatments, including medications, nerve blocks, and physical therapy.
Q3: Are there exercises to alleviate post-mastectomy pain?
A: Yes, gentle exercises, stretches, and practices like deep breathing and posture awareness can help manage pain and improve comfort.
Q4: What is the role of scar tissue in post-mastectomy pain?
A: Scar tissue can contribute to pain by causing tightness and discomfort around the surgical site. It is important to discuss this with your doctor for proper management.
Q5: How can counselling and mind-body techniques help with post-mastectomy pain?
A: Counselling and mind-body techniques can help manage pain perception, reduce anxiety, and improve emotional well-being during the recovery process.