View Full Version : Mastectomy Issues for Swimmers

August 28th, 2007, 04:01 PM
I am posting this for a 56 year old woman swimmer, soon to undergo mastectomy operation for breast cancer. She urgently desires to talk with other swimmers who have had mastectomy operations. Would like to know if and how the operation affected swimming and also interested in discussing breast reconstruction issues/decisions. Please e-mail Kayla Vaughan directly, kaylavaughan@sbcglobal.net if you can help. Thank you.

August 28th, 2007, 04:19 PM
Mary I have a friend who had the operation and is a master swimmer and does the dragon boat races. There are several teams of ladies who have gone through the ordeal and compete is this and other events http://www.victoriadragonboat.com/

August 28th, 2007, 04:27 PM
Thanks for your prompt reply, George. If possible, could you have your friend contact Kayla. She is really needing to talk to someone who has been through it and had to make the sort of decisions she is facing.


August 28th, 2007, 09:16 PM
I will try and reach her but in the mean time look at this http://www.cbcn.ca/breastfriends/

runner girl
August 30th, 2007, 11:38 PM
Your friend might also find some people to talk to through Team Survivor. http://www.teamsurvivor.org/default.aspx They are a very active group in Seattle, not sure about the rest of the country.

August 31st, 2007, 12:07 AM
I have had a partial mastectomy, and am back swimming, (competition as well as Open Water) again. It took a little while to get my range back, and my strength. I didn't go for reconstructive surgery, but do have a prosthesis for when I feel like getting spiffied up.
Each person is different, so the choices will vary. Depends on lifestyle etc. For me I didn't want any more surgery and am adjusting to my new shape.
Adjusting to the diagnosis is tough. For all family members. Adjusting to the changes post surgery is also difficult. Changes in sensation, shape, size etc all take time.More doctors visits etc. (I write letters or do some handiwork while waiting. Helps ease the tension and besides you get things done!)
I used scar zone creme to keep the scar mobile, which helped.
Keep a positive attitude.
Live each day well. Get those round-to-it's done. When I was diagnosed I set out to get my family's photos better organized and all the favourite recipies written out etc. Feels so good to finish a project. I took up my old hobbies which were so appreciated at Christmas.
Slow down and appreciate what you have. Live well and enjoy life.
None of us know what cards we will be dealt or what comes next.
Good Luck.
A positive attitude and courage goes a long way.
She is lucky to have your support too.
I have a wonderful friend, who is also a master swimmer, who has had bilateral mastectomies. She is a pillar of strength for me. She is so positive and also decided against reconstructive surgery. She is not at all self concious about her shape. And is also a dragon boat paddler. That's an excellent organization.