My name is April Bhattacharya and I’ve created this blog to keep family and friends updated with my journey. I hope that others out there that are facing these same decisions find my blog encouraging and informative.

After losing multiple women in my family, including my mother, to breast cancer, I chose to have genetic testing. I found out in March 2010 that I tested positive for the BRCA2 mutation. This does not mean it causes breast or ovarian cancer, but it leads to an increased risk for its development. I have an 85% lifetime risk of breast cancer and a 40% lifetime risk of ovarian cancer. The general population’s lifetime risk for breast cancer is about 12% and less than 2% for ovarian cancer.

After doing much research, discussing things with my husband, talking with doctors and genetic counselors, I came to the conclusion that a prophylactic (preventative) bilateral mastectomy (removal of both breasts) and reconstruction would be my personal best decision. By having this surgery I reduce my risk of getting breast cancer by 90%. I have also taken on a vegan diet. At 23 years old, I am empowered to take steps to prevent breast and/or ovarian cancer from taking my life early. I am grateful to be a woman with options that could change the future of my family.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

300 cc-Graphic Content

Today I had my 7th expansion going from 275 cc to 300 cc. It went really well. I'm pretty sore, but over the next couple of days it will get better. It's such a relief to finally be at 300 cc. That's the number I've been hearing since before my surgery haha I can't believe I came out of surgery at 125 cc and now I'm already to 300 cc. I have another expansion scheduled for next Thursday. That might be the last one...or one more after that. Today the PA was talking to me about 350 cc and I got to see and hold some implants that size to put it in perspective for me. The tissue expanders are very hard, stick straight out and are weirdly shaped so its hard to judge size. They just look absolutely crazy. Especially after today's expansion. But I'm in good spirits and learning to just laugh about these temporary frankenboobs haha

I'm doing really well about exercising and continuing to build strength. I feel like by the time I get back to my normal strength, it will be time for my second surgery and I'll have to start all over! That's okay though : ) I enjoy the challenge. I still can't button my jeans. That motion of pulling it together is just really tough. I try!! Sameer just helps me out...which is fine until I'm in public and have to go to the bathroom and I can't get them buttoned back haha but most days I just wear leggings. Thank goodness for dresses and leggings!

Here are the photos from my 7th tissue expansion today:

Just before my 7th expansion on 02-17-11
Right side view before my 7th expansion
Left side view before my 7th expansion
Front view during tissue expansion
After my 7th expansion going from 275 cc to 300 cc
Right side view after my 7th expansion. My drain site scars are really fading now!! Yay!   
Left side view after my 7th expansion
I was asking the PA what a 350 cc implant looked like, how much did it weigh, etc.  Here they are! The size is not so scary to me now haha these tissue expanders are very hard to judge, so I was glad I got to see and hold the size implants I might be getting.

1 comment:

Plumbing & Handyman said...

Hi April, wow I'm going to go through what you have been in the next couple of months. Wow girl i love your blogs because you motivate me .. right now i''m already sooo sensitive and depress and i thought it wouldn't bug me but wow it did. i love the new posts .. where are you in the recovery part now?