loading
Surgical Drains After Breast Reconstruction PRMA Plastic Surgery

Surgical Drains After Breast Reconstruction – What To Expect

Surgical Drains After Breast Reconstruction PRMA Plastic Surgery

What should you expect with surgical drains after breast reconstruction? 

If you are contemplating breast reconstruction or are already scheduled for surgery, chances are you have questions about the surgical drains that follow.

The drains, called Jackson-Pratt or JP drains, are placed near the incision site after surgery to collect fluid, under suction, from the surgical area. The drains are used for all types of breast reconstruction procedures.

PRMA nurse Heather Waggoner explains that “drains help to prevent fluid buildup and blood clots from occurring in the surgical area, and help reduce the risk of infection or need for further surgery.”

The drains are held in place with a suture and are removed when the drainage slows enough for your body to reabsorb fluid on its own, typically when it’s at 30 cc’s or less.

Waggoner says that “removal can be as early as one week post-op or as long as four weeks post-op depending on the type of reconstruction.”

When the drain is first placed, the fluid will be red and over time turn to a yellow serous color. “Abnormal drainage is when there is a significant increase in amount of fluid, change in consistency or foul odor,” says Waggoner.

Care of the drains is relatively simple and only requires the patient to empty the drain two to three times a day and to clean around the drain insertion site daily. In order to keep the drains from hanging, most doctors recommend pinning them to the abdominal binder or using a pouch.

Most patients say that the drains are slightly uncomfortable but are not intolerable.

Although drains are not the most convenient thing, they are necessary to help the healing process and are necessary to prevent problems like abnormal fluid collections.

Author: Dr. Minas Chrysopoulo and Brandy (Korman) Haslam

Although drains are not the most convenient thing, they are necessary to help the healing process and are necessary to prevent problems like abnormal fluid collections.

Sign Up for Our Monthly Newsletter

Online Form – Newsletter Signup

Continue Reading

A Year in Review at PRMA – 2020

A Year in Review at PRMA – 2020 December 28, 2020 Share on Facebook Twitter Linkedin The COVID-19 global pandemic is an event that has made 2020 a year like no other. It can be hard to feel optimistic or reflect on the good with a year full of unprecedented change. “This past year has […]

Read More

Reducing the Risk of Chronic Opioid Use After Breast Reconstruction with ERAS Protocol

Reducing the Risk of Chronic Opioid Use After Breast Reconstruction with ERAS Protocol

Reducing the Risk of Chronic Opioid Use After Breast Reconstruction with ERAS Protocol December 16, 2020 Share on Facebook Twitter Linkedin A study presented at the 2020 San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium reported that women with breast cancer may be at a high risk of developing a chronic opioid addiction following mastectomy and reconstructive surgery.  […]

Read More

Hospital Stay After DIEP Flap Breast Reconstruction_ What to Expect

Hospital Stay After DIEP Flap Breast Reconstruction: What to Expect

Hospital Stay After DIEP Flap Breast Reconstruction: What to Expect December 09, 2020 Share on Facebook Twitter Linkedin Following DIEP flap breast reconstruction, patients are typically in the hospital for about 2-3 days.  During that time, patients often wonder what they should expect. Here is what a typical hospital stay for PRMA patients entails… Flap […]

Read More

Breast Reconstruction Surgery and Your Period

Breast Reconstruction Surgery and Your Period

Breast Reconstruction Surgery and Your Period December 02, 2020 Share on Facebook Twitter Linkedin During our pre-operative appointment with patients, a topic that occasionally arises is menstrual cycles.  It is completely normal for women to experience changes with their periods throughout breast cancer treatments.  These can be temporary or permanent.  Periods can be unpredictable following […]

Read More

What Bras and Abdominal Girdles to Wear After Breast Reconstruction Surgery

What Bras and Abdominal Girdles to Wear After Breast Reconstruction Surgery November 17, 2020 Share on Facebook Twitter Linkedin When preparing for breast reconstruction surgery, many patients want to know what types of bras and abdominal girdles they should plan to wear after surgery. Although every surgeon has slightly different preferences, we have put together […]

Read More

My 5 DIEP Flap Realities | A Guest Blog From Julie

My 5 DIEP Flap Realities October 28, 2020 Share on Facebook Twitter Linkedin Hi everyone, my name is Julie from It’s a Bosom Thing. I am so happy to be here as a guest blogger and have this opportunity to share with you a few thoughts about life after DIEP Flap Surgery. I was diagnosed […]

Read More

bra day 2020

PRMA’s BRA Day Virtual Event Recap

PRMA’s BRA Day Virtual Event Recap October 22, 2020 Share on Facebook Twitter Linkedin Yesterday we celebrated Breast Reconstruction Awareness day! Although we missed seeing everyone in person this year, we were still able to spread education and awareness on ALL reconstructive options through our virtual efforts.  We were also able to share information on […]

Read More

Second Stage DIEP Flap Surgery

Second Stage DIEP Flap Surgery

Second Stage DIEP Flap Surgery September 08, 2020 Share on Facebook Twitter Linkedin DIEP flap breast reconstruction is typically comprised of at least two stages for the best outcomes.  The second stage of surgery is commonly referred to as the “revision” stage and is usually performed about three months after the initial reconstruction.  The purpose […]

Read More

flaps good option for breast reconstruction_ PRMA Plastic Surgery

If ‘Flaps’ Are Such A Great Breast Reconstruction Option, Why Doesn’t Everyone Get Them?

If ‘Flaps’ Are Such A Great Breast Reconstruction Option, Why Doesn’t Everyone Get Them? September 08, 2020 Share on Facebook Twitter Linkedin Flap-based breast reconstruction procedures, like the DIEP flap, offer patients a safe, natural implant-alternative option to reconstruction after a mastectomy.  Flap surgeries are permanent and are associated with fewer complications after radiation when […]

Read More

Skin Island in Breast Reconstruction _ PRMA Plastic Surgery

What is a Skin Island and How is it Used in Breast Reconstruction?

What is a Skin Island and How is it Used in Breast Reconstruction? September 08, 2020 Share on Facebook Twitter Linkedin What is a “skin island”? The term “skin island” is used to describe the remaining visible skin from a transplanted “flap” of tissue. In the setting of DIEP flap breast reconstruction, the skin island […]

Read More

post-img
Prev post

Breast Density and Risk of Breast Cancer – What’s the Scoop?

Next post

BRCA Gene Mutation, Prophylactic Mastectomy & Breast Reconstruction

post-img
Subscribe Newsletter