So obviously this much cutting and bandaging and dripping and such comes along with various odors. While I was in the hospital, all I smelled was the nurses and their perfumes and lotions, which made me rather ill, along with my own body odor (five days of no showering or deodorant), which honestly surprised me (“What is that smell” I said to my mom on day four, only to realize that it was ME!). Incisions and bandages shouldn’t smell bad unless there’s an infection, and I’m happy to say that I haven’t really smelled anything yucky since I’ve been home and showering every day – even the leaky spot on my abdominal incision does not have an odor.
Today though, when I took off my shirt at the doctor’s office, I did notice a smell – like a sweaty feet sort of smell but not quite as pungent. I had taken a shower and deodorized this morning, so I didn’t think it was me. But the longer I sat there un-shirted, the more I realized it was coming from my breasts. More specifically, it was coming from the tape under my breasts. The plastic surgeon used a lot of tape under my breasts to keep them sort of standing upward, and he said the tape needs to stay there until it comes off on its own – he says this is typical procedure in a breast reduction (it’s a sort of tape bra). I make sure to dry it well after I shower, but it’s still pretty itchy and apparently it’s still staying somewhat moist because it stinks! Even now as I sit here, I can smell it wafting up through the neckline in my pajamas.
I’m a bit unsure what to do about this. The smell makes me think there’s bacteria in the tape, which makes me think I should take it off. But I read a lot of people online who said they regretted taking the tape off too soon because it made their incision (the one going from nipple downward) open up or not heal as quickly. Although I could deal with the smell, the idea of bacteria in there makes me nervous. The tape is, for the most part, coming off on its own. I think I will try to make it through to the weekend and then perhaps cut off as much as I can – whatever’s not completely stuck to my skin.