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Will there be an issue for me to have DIEP Flap surgery because I have Hep C

By July 11, 2010 - 5:08pm
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I had non invasive cancer in my breasts. Both have been removed. Went through surgery with out a hitch. I recovered very fast. i am 58. Plastic surgeon had talked to me about the DIEP Flap and I am on board with this. Now he is questioning whether or not i will be able to have this type of surgery because of the HEP C. I was on the Pegasus/rib treatment for 10 months. (I believe this may have kept my cancer from going invasive as the mass removed was 16 cm) As soon as I was off the meds I went out of remission. I have not had any of the signs of my liver reacting badly. No brown urine or clay type stool. Actually, i feel very well. i am going to see my HEP C doctor to have some test done. Exactly, what is the plastic surgeon looking for? My first surgery was 7 and a half hours. I had implants put in behind the skin(temporary) but rejected both-one at a time so I have had two minor surgeries as well and responded very well. i have returned to work but was to have reconstruction done. Will the HEP C stop me from having this done?

I do not drink or smoke and really am very healthy. I got the HEP C through a blood transfusion. Is there a worry from the physicians point of view because of my infection. Plastic surgeon wants to know what my count is. this was not an issue when I had my first surgery. so I am not sure what he is asking. i understand that he may be concerned about my liver health because of the surgery which is 8 hours. I just want to know can the HEP-C prevent me from having reconstruction surgery

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Expert HERWriter Guide Blogger

Hi Dock - What's going to be at issue for you is the health of your liver. You're no doubt aware that hepatitis C is an infection caused by a virus that attacks the liver. An infection that lasts over several years can lead to complications including scarring of the liver tissue, and that impacts the liver's ability to function during a surgical procedure.Some types of impairments could put your life at risk during surgery and need to be evaluated prior to surgery.

This link provides more information on the risks from the Gastrointestinal Unit at Massachusetts General Hospital and the Department of Medicine, at Harvard Medical School in Boston. http://www.hepatitis-central.com/hcv/liver/surgery/risk.html

Has your surgeon mentioned having liver function tests? Here's information about them from Mayo Clinic: http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/liver-function-tests/MY00093

It sounds like your doctors just want to be sure that all will go smoothly for you, but they could have done a better job of explaining the information and evaluations that are needed to ensure your safety. Best wishes to you in moving forward with this, I hope all goes well.

Take care,

July 12, 2010 - 5:25pm
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