Everything About Understanding Tummy Tuck Drains

During an Abdominoplasty procedure, the skin is separated from the fascia covering the muscles and then pulled down to remove its excess.
As a result of the skin elevation a large space is created between the under surface of the skin and the muscle below.

From the surgical standpoint we want the connection between the skin and the muscle below to be re-established as soon as possible to avoid accumulation of fluid and secretions. If present these will result in scar formation and increases the possibility of infection.
Three measures are employed to that end:

1- The skin is sutured back to the muscle fascia underneath.
2- A bulky dressing and a pressure garment will keep the skin in contact with the muscles below.
3- drains are placed to aspirate the fluid that is naturally generated after surgery thereby avoiding the creation of a fluid filled cavity.

There is a push by some surgeons to eliminate the use of a drain. The discussion never refers to any negative effects of placing drains . On the other hand, not using a drain is used for marketing purposes. I will not go over the details of the controversy.

I remove the drains four days after surgery. Drains allow me to make my incision lower where the lymphatics are and protect me from accumulation of fluid. For me, drains act as a safety measure. In over 30 years of practice I have never regretted using them.