Tips for Handling Your Drain after Surgery

Every surgery requires a unique type of recovery process. Many plastic surgery procedures, such as large breast augmentations and tummy tucks, require a drain after surgery to remove pus, blood, and other fluids from the incision site.

If you are about to undergo surgery that will result in a drain, it’s very important that you understand exactly how the drain functions and the best ways to handle it during your recovery period. You can also take expert advice from a surgeon from

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A surgical drain is a closed suction device that consists of a thin, flexible rubber tube and a soft, round squeeze bulb that looks like a clear, plastic hand grenade. The rubber tube is inserted into the incision site and leads into the bulb so that excess fluid can be suctioned and drained out of the surgical site.

It might feel awkward to wear your drain, but most are designed to easily blend in with your clothes. Most squeeze bulbs come equipped with a plastic loop that can be pinned to your clothes. There are even special clothes available, like camisoles, belts, and shorts that have pockets and Velcro loops specifically for the drain’s bulb.

Assuming that your surgical site will produce fluids as your surgeon expects, you will eventually need to empty your drain. Since it’s important to measure the number of fluids produced, you will need a measuring cup, pencil, and piece of paper to do this. Be sure to empty the drain before it is entirely full; this may need to occur once every few hours at the beginning of your recovery, then only once or a twice a day later on.