Friday, October 15, 2010

Drain Tubes and Fill

Ryan and I discussed the amount of fluid my drain tubes were still producing, the appearance of the fluid, and the possibility of the skin around the site breaking down.  We also discussed my risk for contracting a Staph infection because of the length of time the drain tubes have been in place.  Based on that risk, he decided to pull them yesterday, and take our chances of possibly needing to drain fluid as opposed to complications that could be brought on by a staph infection.

I also had my first 'fill' yesterday.  60 cc's.  It was interesting to see where he marked off my port site, and then being able to feel the difference in the actual tissue expander and the port site under my skin.

The right side didn't hurt at all when he was doing the feel...I actually couldn't feel anything on that side.

The left side (the side that has been giving me the most trouble since surgery) was a different story.  I definitely felt the needle go through the muscle on that side.  The first 30 cc's he injected weren't uncomfortable at all, but the during the last 30 cc's, I could feel hot twinges.  I don't know if it was the muscle fibers stinging as they stretched or what but it was a little uncomfortable.

Last night I had a lot of shooting pains in my shoulder on that side, so I spent a lot of the evening with an ice pack on my shoulder.

With that being said, it still wasn't nearly as bad as I anticipated it to be.

The plan is to get fills every week for the next few weeks, and have my exchange surgery around Thanksgiving.  Thank goodness!  That means I should feel okay again by Christmas, and hopefully, have the drain tubes out from that surgery.

I think when all this is said and done, I NEVER want to see another Jackson-Pratt drain in my life!

The good thing about getting the drains out...I was able to sleep on my right side for the first time in a MONTH last night.  

The downside, the pressure from sleeping on that side caused my seroma to drain.  My shirt, bra, and body pillow were soaked when I woke up this morning.  YUCK!!!  Not exactly what I wanted to deal with at 5 o'clock in the morning.  

It drained and drained and drained.

So, I talked to Chris on the phone until I knew mom would be getting up for work. Then I called her and asked her what in the world I should put on it to contain the drainage because I had used up every single gauze pad in my house.  

She suggested a breast pad.

Um, okay, like I have any of those.

So, I compromised and used the next best thing...a maxi pad.

Yes, I really did!

And it worked.

Good thing I keep those in my bathroom just in case someone comes over and needs one. ahem, Kamie.

I did have to call Evan to verify this was okay though and would not cause infection.

I have to say, it actually feels better now that it has been draining. It released a lot of the pressure I was feeling on that side.

My left side, on the other hand, is not doing so well today.  I have a lot of swelling and the drain site is very red and tender.  I spoke to the nurse at Ryan's office a little bit ago, and she told me to take it easy today, and ice it, and if it's not better by the time she calls back to check on me this afternoon, he will probably want to look at it and see if it needs drained. 

Praying this issue resolves itself and that it does not need to be drained.

The last good thing about the drain tubes being out soon as I finish up the antibiotic I am on, I don't have to take anymore.  

I hope you all are having a great Friday.  It's absolutely beautiful outside today!!!


  1. That reminds me of waking to a puddle of breast milk. Ah, I remember those days. pain, humbling experience, and NOTHING like what you are experiencing. Praying for you!

  2. Everyone should contribute to the use of maxi pads. Glad for a solution and things are looking up.

  3. Did you get a lymph node removed on the left side? Maybe that's why it's hurting more.

  4. haha...Cindy. Who knew they were multi-functional.