After mastectomy now waiting for chemo

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I have finished mastectomy over 2 weeks, result from surgeon said that I have to do Chemotherapy, then radiotherapy and hormone medicine.

I have been told I will have appointment with Oncologist 3-4weks later and then further 2weeks to start Chemotherapy if my wound is healed.

I am wondering what should I do during the time before starting chemo?  How should I prepare?  Where to buy wig? (I only found one shop in the hospital).

I am worrying my outlook will be difference once started anything I have to do before

  • Hi 

    I'm too in the same boat, and sort of the same time scale 

    My mastectomy was  7 weeks, and saw the oncologist yesterday. Chemo will start in around 2 to 3 weeks time. 

    I'm trying the cold cap to prevent hair loss first.  Some people get on with it. It's worth a try.

    There is a website called hair reborn (not sure if spelt correctly) they get u in contact with a hairdresser in your area that supply wigs etc.

    I only found out about it last night when I can't sleep I start googling everything !!

  • Hi Jackiewackie10

    Give you a hug  

    Thank you for your information.  I understand it is fear as chemo is coming soon, on the other hand it is good to have moving forward. I will try cold cap if I can, my nurse said it is depended on which drugs, so I need to wait for appointment with Oncologist for details.

    I hope we can cope with the pain, minimize side effects. Keep in touch to encourage each other. xx

  • Hi I can absolutely recommend using the cold cap.  I kept much of my hair and never used my wig. I got one on the NHS.  Perhaps not the best but at least I didn't invest money in it only not to use it. Cancer hair Care are worth contacting as well.  They advised me on hair shampoo and conditioner.  I add rosemary essential oil to Faith in Nature unperfumed products.  I still do. My sense of smell was heightened because of losing hair in my nose!!  I have a brilliant hairdresser who supported me and yes I had it trimmed during my treatment.  Losing my eyelashes and eyebrows was a challenge.  Boots working with MacMillan offer beauty advice which boosted my moral.

    So much depends on what your treatments are.  Taking a step at a time and try not to over think.  Easier said than done.

    Keep exercising and have a balanced diet is good preparation.

    I finished my treatment in November 2022.  It remains a journey and I have been grateful for all the support I have received.  I am back to Pilates and playing tennis. All with amazing support from oncology physiotherapists and friends.

    I hope this helps.

  • Hi 

    I’m the other way round from you, I had chemo first (last one tomorrow) and I’ll have surgery in about 6 weeks. I didn’t cold cap. My breast nurse gave me a voucher for a wig and the hospital had a Macmillan wit service. I bought quite a lot of hats before starting chemo so I was prepared for hair loss. I also had my short bob cut into a pixie cut. I did end up buying a wig from Simply Wigs and I was really pleased with it. I had it trimmed so it looked more like my previous bob.

    Honestly the thought and the unknown about having chemotherapy is actually worse than having it. Good luck. 

  • Hi ricki

    Thanks for your positive advice!  It is much helpful for meBlush

  • Hi whatnot

    Congrats! You have already undergone the most hardest process.  No worry for the surgery Blush

  • Sorry to hear you’ve joined the BC club I know you’ll be worry about what’s to come , so did I and cried quite a few times I really didn’t want chemo. Roll on a year from diagnosis with double mastectomy done, chemo done and now sitting waiting for ovaries and tubes to be removed as precautionary ( should be taken down to theatre in 20 mins) I’m calm as a Cucumber believe it or not. Very different to the way I was last year. The chemo is doable yes you’ll prob get tough times as it’s accumulative but my life carried on and looking back wasn’t as bad as I thought it was going to be and time went very quickly. You will have good days and bad days but you’ll get past it all and will be fine. It will change you as a person and you’ll find a strength you never had. Look at me today it’s like a visit to the dentist not the sobbing wreck I was going for my first op last year lol. Best of luck in your recovery x

  • Hi DDG1967

    I  shed a tear when reading your reply.  You encouraged me, let me know staying calm and positive.  Honestly, I scare and knowing chemo is the stsrt point, following may have uncertain hard times to undergo.  But I told myself, everyone can do it well and I can do it as well, I keep reminding myself.....

    Best wish to you, speedy recover after your surger  Heartxx

  • Hi Nana75, 

    you have gone through a big part of the journey with the mastectomy, I hope you are recovering well, I know it can feel slow but as long as it is steady, it will be fine. 

    To the previous great replies you had, I will add a few more, which really helped me. 

    Physical exercise according to your levels of recovery and always after discussion with you nursing, medical team and physio if possible. But it is very important to stay active throughout your chemo. Walking is the best option and can be done even in these early stages, even inside the house. And the stronger you feel, the more you can walk. It is a great remedy for many chemo side effects. 

    The second thing I did and helped with my image was eyebrows microblading. I had the first session before the chemo and the retouch during, my oncologist was happy that there was no risk. And I practised on applying false eyelashes because I am so clumsy that it took me weeks to learn how to do it properly.

    However, from the stories and the videos that I have watched, I have seen so many women that look and feel beautiful without any hair or wig and that was always giving me comfort and hope that even in the worst case scenario, I would be ok. 

    I hope your journey is as uneventful as it can possibly be. 

    Best wishes, 


  • Thank you Christina!  I really got much valuable knowledges. I could get more positive words from here, make me building up more and more confidence to reduce the fears.

    I really appreciated everyone for the supports and generous sharing.

    love Heart️