A lumpectomy is a surgical procedure that involves removing abnormal or cancerous tissue from the breast. It offers a different option for patients than a mastectomy which removes the entire breast although a mastectomy is sometimes necessary if there are multiple lumps or the cancer has spread. On average it takes three to four weeks to recover from a lumpectomy, and there are certain things that can be done to help the recovery process along.

Things You Will Need

Supportive Bra

Step 1

Keep the site of the incision clean. Even though the wound from your lumpectomy will be rather small, it's still important that you keep it clean. Getting an infection can delay your recovery from the procedure for weeks or months.

Step 2

Get plenty of rest. Most lumpectomies are a same-day procedure which means no overnight hospital stay is required. It is still taxing on your body though, which is why it's important to get adequate rest once you are home.

Step 3

Take only sponge baths until your stitches are removed or dissolved. Some stitches gradually dissolve over time while others still must be removed by a doctor. It's important not to get the stitches wet until they are gone from your body.

Step 4

Wear a supportive bra. Movement of your breast is often when you experience the most pain after a lumpectomy. Wearing a supportive bra can help to limit the movement of your breast and limit the pain you have.

Step 5

Avoid strenuous activities. For a few weeks it's important that you don't engage in any strenuous activities that could rip open your stitches or the scab on your wound. This includes lifting, running, jogging, skipping and anything that causes the breast do move a lot or stretch.

Step 6

Perform arm exercises to slowly stretch and move your arm and breast. Your doctor should show you how to do arm exercises after your lumpectomy. These are designed to keep you from getting stiff, and help you make a faster recovery.

Step 7

Attend follow up appointments. During these appointments your doctor will check the site of your incision to make sure it is healing as it should be and does not have an infection. This is your opportunity to ask any questions you have about the recovery process or your progress.


Tips & Warnings