She asked to be flat- Shelly’s Survivor Story

I wasn’t prepared for how painful it would be for me to be the one to hear of a woman’s experience, while it was still so raw for her. While it breaks my heart, knowing this happens motivates me to do the work to try to keep it from continuing to happen. Here’s Shelly’s story, with photos at the bottom:

I am 5 Days post explant [removal of breast implants] and I am so upset that my surgeon left lots of extra skin. It looks like he just took out implants and that’s it. I was wanting to know if I can buy a shirt to support this cause.

I was a ten year survivor when the found LCIS [an abnormal cell growth that increases one’s risk of invasive cancer in the future] in my other breast. I had put up with a sh***y recon job for 10 years and just wore a prosthetic. I thought, ‘OK here is my chance to get everything fixed,’ and now this. I think I am going to go back to my breast surgeon eventually and see if she can fix it. She isn’t a PS– just a surgeon. In the meantime I will heal and let this Dr know that what he has done is unacceptable. I have already had two surgeries in six months so not ready for anything more just yet.
I asked Shelly if I could share her messages. She agreed, and also sent pictures, showing how her chest looks 5 days after surgery, which her surgeon was supposed to remove implants and leave her with a flat result:

Shelly 2
Leaning forward

6 days post explant:

I am back to work today feel fine except a little sore. Lol. I guess I would rather not show my face at this point but you can use my name.

I was surprised that she was back at work so soon:
I had surgery to explant last Tuesday; he took dressing and drains out Friday and said I could come back to work to day. I guess because I have a desk job.
When I asked her whether he knew she wanted a flat cosmetic outcome :
Yes he knew I was done with trying reconstruction and wanted to be flat. I even asked him to try and eliminate some of my under arm boob lol. So he said he would have to make the incision longer, and I said I didn’t care. He did do that, I believe. He told me to wear a sports bra 24/7 until I see him again so I guess he thinks the skin will tighten up. I am doing what he asked and will be expecting lots of answers when I go back. I wish I had just went back to my breast surgeon I believe she would of done it right, but I guess I thought I should use a plastic surgeon. That was my error. I don’t think they are experienced enough at doing the flat thing. I am in the flat and fabulous group they are wonderful ladies! I have cried off and on since dressing came off. It comes and goes. I feel grossed out when I look at it and disgusted. I guess what I am feeling feels like grief. I am sure it will pass eventually and I will be very mad. I am usually pretty good at speaking my mind. Lol

Thanks for listening that helps!

Published by Not Putting on a Shirt

Founder of Not Putting on a Shirt, a mastectomy patients' rights organization that advocates for optimal surgical outcomes for patients going flat.

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