Drain Information Help

maryannrogers
maryannrogers Member Posts: 115
edited March 2014 in Breast Cancer #1
Hi everyone,

Just wondering what experience others have had with these stupid drains after surgery? I had my modified radical masect last Tuesday, 6/23. Came home with 2 drains.
Went for a followup with surgeon this past Monday and they only removed 1 of the drains. Said the other one had to drain 20-25cc within a 24 hour period, and mine wasn't there yet. I realize it was only 6 days before that I had the surgery, so figured it might take 10 days to 2 weeks. Like a dork, I didn't ask. She just said when it gets there to come in and they will remove it.

Final pathology report was IDC, stage IIa, no lymph node invasion, clear margins, not matastasized, ER positive. She said the only reason it was rated a stage II was that the tumor was 4.5 cc, but said I was a lucky lady.

Have an appointment on July 11th (Saturday, can you believe that) with my oncologist for a consultation.

If you have any info or experience on what I have mentioned, please let me know.

Again thank you all for your support and concern.

Love,
Maryann

Comments

  • mimivac
    mimivac Member Posts: 2,143
    Drains
    Maryann, your surgeon is right. No lymph node involvement and clear margins are lucky indeed. As for the drains, I had a lumpectomy, but did have one drain. I know they're a pain, but necessary. I would just follow the doc's instructions and it'll be out before you know it. Having your drains out will make you feel like a new woman.

    Mimi
  • Marcia527
    Marcia527 Member Posts: 2,729
    I had one drain taken out
    I had one drain taken out after one week and he took the second one out after two weeks. He didn't leave it up to me tho. He wanted to see me at two weeks to check how I was doing.
  • maya00i
    maya00i Member Posts: 42
    I had the same radicial
    I had the same radicial modified mastectomy with nine lymph nodes. I had drains also, my had gotten infected because the were always clots in the tubes and I had to get them out myself. Work them through he tube. I was careful to wash my hadns first but it did not good. So I was sent back to hospital for 2 more days.So what I am saying here is just be careful if you have to touch the tubes close to the skin. I am a 1 1/2 year survivor.
  • piseminger
    piseminger Member Posts: 35
    hang in there :-)
    Hi MaryAnn, I had two drains. The first one pushed itself out sooner than the doctor wanted it to come out. The second came out about two weeks after surgery. My doctor also wanted the fluid amount to lower but because my second drain was coming out he took it the rest of the way out so I wouldn't get an infection. Because they came out so early I had to go into his office at least twice each week to be aspirated. That mean they can to use a needle to pull the fluid off. Sounds painful but it wasn't it was actually a relief. The fluid buildup was painful. It took several months for the fluid to stop building up.
  • Jenice
    Jenice Member Posts: 5
    drains
    I had a mastectomy on the 16th, also came home with 2 drains. My surgeon removed one after a week, the other is still in. When I saw him yesterday, it was 2 weeks, so I was a little discouraged. He helped me out by telling me how well I actually was doing. I have good range of motion with my arm, so that meant I had been active, which was one reason I drained. It's also slowing down. I will be the first to agree what a pain they are!
    I was diagnosed with DCIS stage 0. I chose to have the mastectomy after undergoing a lumpectomy, with an additional excision, and I still didn't have clear margins!
  • bfbear
    bfbear Member Posts: 380
    maya00i said:

    I had the same radicial
    I had the same radicial modified mastectomy with nine lymph nodes. I had drains also, my had gotten infected because the were always clots in the tubes and I had to get them out myself. Work them through he tube. I was careful to wash my hadns first but it did not good. So I was sent back to hospital for 2 more days.So what I am saying here is just be careful if you have to touch the tubes close to the skin. I am a 1 1/2 year survivor.

    Drains
    I had a dbl mast/recon in early May.
    I had two drains. I was told the same thing about the 20 cc or less/day before they'd take them out (I was shown how to "strip" them down by using an alcohol wipe folded over the tube, so even when I got near the skin it was pretty germ free).

    They were both in for two weeks or so. And when they were removed it was wonderful!! I felt so free!

    So...just keep taking care of it, and all will be well.

    Gentle hugs,
    Debi
  • CR1954
    CR1954 Member Posts: 1,390 Member
    Jenice said:

    drains
    I had a mastectomy on the 16th, also came home with 2 drains. My surgeon removed one after a week, the other is still in. When I saw him yesterday, it was 2 weeks, so I was a little discouraged. He helped me out by telling me how well I actually was doing. I have good range of motion with my arm, so that meant I had been active, which was one reason I drained. It's also slowing down. I will be the first to agree what a pain they are!
    I was diagnosed with DCIS stage 0. I chose to have the mastectomy after undergoing a lumpectomy, with an additional excision, and I still didn't have clear margins!

    Jenice.........
    Hello and welcome! I'm happy that you found ud.

    I also had two drains, and they also had to get down to certain amount before being removed. Fortunately, when I saw the surgeon for my first re-check, they were both there and they both came out.

    But while I had them, I agree, they were a true pain! Mine would also get clogged. I would have "fluids running down the front of me, soaking my clothes. Then one got clogged at the very bottom and the surgeon, via phone call, had me remove the bulb end and clean it out. Well, ick. I admit to being a squeamish person and while I did it, I wanted to keep my eyes closed!

    At any rate, if they are removed too soon, then the area will need to be aspirated because of fluid buildup.

    CR
  • jk1952
    jk1952 Member Posts: 613
    CR1954 said:

    Jenice.........
    Hello and welcome! I'm happy that you found ud.

    I also had two drains, and they also had to get down to certain amount before being removed. Fortunately, when I saw the surgeon for my first re-check, they were both there and they both came out.

    But while I had them, I agree, they were a true pain! Mine would also get clogged. I would have "fluids running down the front of me, soaking my clothes. Then one got clogged at the very bottom and the surgeon, via phone call, had me remove the bulb end and clean it out. Well, ick. I admit to being a squeamish person and while I did it, I wanted to keep my eyes closed!

    At any rate, if they are removed too soon, then the area will need to be aspirated because of fluid buildup.

    CR

    I had six drains with my
    I had six drains with my mastectomy and DIEP reconstruction: two in each breast and two in my abdomen. After four days in the hospital, I went home with four of them. All went well until after three additional drains were removed. The last one was still draining a lot and then it plugged bad enough that it had to be removed too early. I've had the aspiration a couple times, but not much has come out. Right now, I'm still struggling with swelling in my abdomen and I blame the fact that the drain came out too early. Since I almost pass out each time they try the aspiration, neither the doctor nor I am anxious to do it.

    My bottom line is...the drains are a real pain but they are necessary and they are much better than the alternative.

    Joyce
  • CR1954
    CR1954 Member Posts: 1,390 Member
    jk1952 said:

    I had six drains with my
    I had six drains with my mastectomy and DIEP reconstruction: two in each breast and two in my abdomen. After four days in the hospital, I went home with four of them. All went well until after three additional drains were removed. The last one was still draining a lot and then it plugged bad enough that it had to be removed too early. I've had the aspiration a couple times, but not much has come out. Right now, I'm still struggling with swelling in my abdomen and I blame the fact that the drain came out too early. Since I almost pass out each time they try the aspiration, neither the doctor nor I am anxious to do it.

    My bottom line is...the drains are a real pain but they are necessary and they are much better than the alternative.

    Joyce

    Oh boy Joyce..
    You really have been through the wringer with the drains. And aspirations...I shudder!

    CR
  • dmc_emmy
    dmc_emmy Member Posts: 549
    Not much to add here...
    I, too, was sent home with two drains and I had to keep them in for two weeks or so. My mom was here from TN and she took care of them for me, since I couldn't move my arm well enough to do it myself. I'm also a total whimp about blood, even my own, so I was extremely glad that she was here.

    Once the drains came out, like the other ladies said, it was a huge relief. The weeks will go by quickly, just hang in there. I know it's a pain, but they do serve an important purpose.

    What I found helped was to empty the drains often, otherwise they became uncomfortable. I can't remember how often I emptied them, but I know it was several times a day.

    Here's to a quick recovery.
    dmc
  • Butterfly12
    Butterfly12 Member Posts: 56
    Maryann
    I had 4 drains when I left the hospital. I had two removed 1 week post-op, 1 the following week and my last one TODAY...... YAHOOOO!!!!!!!! But mine had to be below 30 cc in 12 period for them to drain them. I also had my port put in today, so the extra pain meds from that was a blessing as well.

    Sherry
  • mrsziggy
    mrsziggy Member Posts: 20
    jk1952 said:

    I had six drains with my
    I had six drains with my mastectomy and DIEP reconstruction: two in each breast and two in my abdomen. After four days in the hospital, I went home with four of them. All went well until after three additional drains were removed. The last one was still draining a lot and then it plugged bad enough that it had to be removed too early. I've had the aspiration a couple times, but not much has come out. Right now, I'm still struggling with swelling in my abdomen and I blame the fact that the drain came out too early. Since I almost pass out each time they try the aspiration, neither the doctor nor I am anxious to do it.

    My bottom line is...the drains are a real pain but they are necessary and they are much better than the alternative.

    Joyce

    I too had six drains after
    I too had six drains after my bilateral mast and reconstruction. I came home with all of them and I know all too well what a pain they are. My skin got infected where the drains went in and trust me, it HURT!!! Fortunately, I got all 6 removed at my 1st post op visit one wk later. One was questionable because it was barely under 20 cc's but they went ahead because I lived so far away. I felt like I might live after that. I know they are necessary but that doesn't make it any easier. I have learned thru this whole expierence to live one day at a time, sometimes one moment at a time. I pray each morning that God will give me the strength to make it thru another day and He always does. Hang in there everyone. We are all going to make it!!!!!!!!!
    Tracy
  • maryannrogers
    maryannrogers Member Posts: 115
    Thank you every one for the
    Thank you every one for the feedback. I appreciate it.

    Hope you're all doing fine. It's been 108 degrees here and rising.

    Keep cool wherever you are. :)

    Love,
    Maryann
  • CR1954
    CR1954 Member Posts: 1,390 Member

    Thank you every one for the
    Thank you every one for the feedback. I appreciate it.

    Hope you're all doing fine. It's been 108 degrees here and rising.

    Keep cool wherever you are. :)

    Love,
    Maryann

    LOL......
    LOL, I complained a lot about two drains. I can't IMAGINE having four or six!! You girls certainly are warrior women!

    Waaay too hot there for me Maryann! I am in the northeast, so cooler temps. Thank goodness! I would literally sizzle at 108!!

    CR
  • jk1952
    jk1952 Member Posts: 613
    CR1954 said:

    Oh boy Joyce..
    You really have been through the wringer with the drains. And aspirations...I shudder!

    CR

    CR, the funny thing with the

    CR, the funny thing with the aspirations is that they don't really hurt much, since my abdomen is numb. And, I know that I have a high tolerance for pain (didn't take anything other than Advil or Tylenol after I left the hospital). But, show me a needle (or if I know there's one near), I'm light-headed. This has been the worst of my problems, so I'm actually very thankful!

    Joyce

    P. S. So glad to read that your husband was able to come home last night. Hope you have a great weekend.
  • dmc_emmy
    dmc_emmy Member Posts: 549
    CR1954 said:

    LOL......
    LOL, I complained a lot about two drains. I can't IMAGINE having four or six!! You girls certainly are warrior women!

    Waaay too hot there for me Maryann! I am in the northeast, so cooler temps. Thank goodness! I would literally sizzle at 108!!

    CR

    CR-I'm in the North, too
    and I had my heat on in my car this AM! That's crazy! It's July! I remember those 100+ days back in Ol' Virgini and I don't remember complaining too much about it!

    However, here...that's another matter! 8+ months of winter and barely 3 of summer? Something is very wrong with that pix. I'll probably be going to the fireworks with a winter coat!

    Yes, I agree with CR, 4-6 drains?! Wow! I couldn't handle two without my mom helping me. I am soooo helpless.
    dmc
  • jk1952
    jk1952 Member Posts: 613
    dmc_emmy said:

    CR-I'm in the North, too
    and I had my heat on in my car this AM! That's crazy! It's July! I remember those 100+ days back in Ol' Virgini and I don't remember complaining too much about it!

    However, here...that's another matter! 8+ months of winter and barely 3 of summer? Something is very wrong with that pix. I'll probably be going to the fireworks with a winter coat!

    Yes, I agree with CR, 4-6 drains?! Wow! I couldn't handle two without my mom helping me. I am soooo helpless.
    dmc

    I'm in Syracuse and went to

    I'm in Syracuse and went to college in Potsdam (way north in NY). We used to joke that there were only two seasons: winter and the 4th of July. Today, is the 4th of July, and the high is only going to be 70. Global warming hasn't hit here.

    Joyce