One of the aftereffects of a latissimus flap breast reconstruction Dr. Elliott told me about was back weakness. Since my back has one or two less layers of muscle, it only stands to reason that it’s not going to be as strong as it was.
For those of you who are not familiar with the reconstruction procedure, visit this site for a really good overview: http://www.optionsforbreastreconstruction.com/lat-dorsi.html
My concern currently is that I only go for about 30 minutes of constant activity while standing up without pain. I was out with Hubby on Friday hitting up garage sales and running other errands for about five hours. After three yard sales and by the time we finished up at Verizon, I was done for the rest of the day. I was hitting about a 5-6 on the pain scale and my back was so weak. I spent the afternoon and evening sitting in my recliner.
Interestingly the corseted feeling caused by the scar tissue under my skin is no longer nearly as severe as it used to be. It’s almost completely gone now though there are still days when my back is tight.
I wish I knew more about the back weakness issue. Web sites I have consulted talk about minor to moderate issues with it. I wouldn’t call this severe, but I WOULD call it frustrating as all hell. Granted I am not what one would call physically fit. I wasn’t to begin with. My record for being at one of the Disney parks is 14 hours. Ten hours was our average. That’s my form of exercise. Now eight hours is the most I can handle.
The worst thing is bending over. I can do it about 3-4 times. At 5, it starts to hurt and at 6-7 my back starts to seize up. Add walking to bending over and I’m pretty well trashed. I would have thought that sitting would have helped. While it does keep me from being in major pain, I feel really weak and it’s hard to get up.
Really, after the activities yesterday, I felt the way I did about three months out of surgery. It’s been nine months today and I expected to be completely healed by now. It is SO DAMNED FRUSTRATING!!!
What frustrates me even more is that I don’t know if this muscle pain is the same as when I used to work out too hard or if my body is still healing and I should take it easier on myself. I don’t know what the right balance is. I think I’ll be calling Dr. Elliot’s office on Monday and talk to his nursing staff about this.
I’ll update you all when I know something. In the mean time, today will consist of sitting on my ass and doing nothing