My parting gifts for participating in the surgery two weeks ago were three drains – one for each breast and one for the lymph nodes. About 18″ of plastic tubing comes out the skin on both sides and fluid drains into a plastic bulb on the ends. I was turned into a human Easter egg tree!
It was explained that the body sends tons of fluids to the surgical site and the drains are a way to help the site heal more quickly. The drains have needed to be emptied and contents measured and logged twice a day. DH (Dear Husband) has been amazing at this task. On Monday, the doctor determined that I had healed enough so that two of the drains were ready to be removed.
When the nurse came in to remove them, she told me that she wasn’t going to lie, patients said the drain tubes hurt coming out, like a burn. I was surprised to hear that because I would have thought being surrounded with all the mushy innards, they would have been well greased and slid out easily. It turns out she was right, there was momentary, but very intense stinging when the tubes came out. She mentioned that I would also get another set of drains during reconstruction surgery. I was thinking when that surgery happens, I’ll take the good doctor a can of WD-40 and/or a jar of petroleum jelly to oil up those tubes so they won’t sting so much coming out.
We are hopeful that my last drain comes out tomorrow. I’m considering telling them just to cut the tube really close to the skin, and hope that I don’t make a whistle when I walk around in a wind storm.
Today is a good day!