Could Surgical Drains Be A Thing Of The Past
By: Courtney Floyd
Are surgical drains necessary for DIEP flap breast reconstruction?
It is truly incredible to reflect back to just twenty years ago and realize how far medicine has come! Every day new research is beginning in the hopes of developing better care for patients. Just think what the next twenty years could bring!
Last month, a study was released in the Journal of the Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery titled “No-Drain DIEP Flap Donor-Site Closure Using Barbed Progressive Tension Sutures.” The goal of this study was to compare patient outcomes following DIEP flap breast reconstruction. The focus was on the abdominal donor-site closure techniques and how they compared. The three closure types were used--abdominal drains, progressive tension sutures plus abdominal drains, and barbed progressive tension sutures without drains.
There were 75 patients followed in this study split into three equal groups among the different abdominal closure types. Each of the groups had a similar distribution of patient characteristics (BMI, smoking status, age, etc.).
The results of the study are pretty exciting for the future of breast reconstruction surgery! There was statistically no significant difference in complications rates between the three groups.
What does this mean? No drain DIEP flap donor site closure using barbed progressive tension sutures is a safe and effective alternative to traditional abdominal closure using surgical drains.
This study could be the beginning of a whole new patient experience post breast reconstruction surgery. I mean, let’s face it, if we could eliminate the need for those pesky drains, why wouldn’t we?!?! More studies will most definitely begin because of this report and hopefully soon this technique (or maybe even something better) will be adopted as the standard practice.
Read more about the study at http://bit.ly/1XiGgpd