9 Days on Antibiotics, Several Irrigations of Betadine and Hibiclense, Still Purulent Drainage After Breast Reduction?

I am now 26 days post op breast reductions, did great first 14 days. then started infections. Purulent (no odor) drainage still coming back, PS wants to do another surgery, re-open all inscisions and clean me out. Will this fix the infection AND is this a normal treatment option?

Doctor Answers 5

Poor healing following breast reduction

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Sorry to hear about your problems.  Even with the all the precautions taken we sometimes end up with post operative complications that neither you or the surgeon can control.  Surgical site infections can and do occur and in breast reductions we commonly see "fat necrosis" or fat that dies about 2 weeks after surgery.  The fat cells die and becomes a liquid, it looks oiley, it oozes for weeks and you can get a secondary infection due to the fat necrosis.  It sounds like your surgeon wants to take you back to surgery to remove the remaining fat necrosis.

This will not cure the infection per say, but you need to eliminate the dead tissue to put you back on a healing course and the antibiotics can do their magic.  No, it is not a normal option, but in your case a reasonable one.

Good Luck!

Omaha Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 83 reviews

Opening wound after long term breast reduction infection is a good idea.

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Conservative treatment of your infection is not working.  You may have some necrotic (no blood supply) tissue inside that needs to be "cleaned out".  So I think your surgeon is absolutely right.

George J. Beraka, MD (retired)
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon

Infection and Drainage after Breast Reduction

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   Signs of infection and drainage from the incisions may need opening and drainage with possible debridement.  This is a reasonable approach, and your plastic surgeon is in the best position to evaluate you.

Breast reduction and infection

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If you have been having persistent drainage and your surgeon is concerned that you have an infection, then his approach sounds reasonable.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Infection after Breast Reduction?

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I'm sorry to hear about the complications you have experienced after breast reduction surgery. Given your description, it does sound like your plastic surgeon is treating you appropriately. However, as you can imagine, online consultants will not be able to provide you with good clinical advice without much more information;  if in doubt, about the need for additional surgery you may need to seek second opinion consultations with board certified plastic surgeons in your area.  If you do decide to do so, it would be helpful for you to obtain as much information as possible ( for example microbiology culture results) to review with your additional consultant.

 Best wishes;  hopefully, you'll be very pleased with the long-term outcome of the procedure performed.

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.