Do You Need to Have Drains for Breast Explantation?

Doctor Answers 11

Drains Usually Are Not Necessary When Removing Implants

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

                  Drains aren’t necessary in the vast majority of patients who undergo breast implant removal.  When aggressive capsulectomies are performed in combination with implant removal drains may occasionally be necessary.  In this situation raw surface areas may produce fluid and without drains seromas may develop.

                  It’s important to understand that each patients situation is unique and that decisions regarding drains are often made in the operating room.  If you have concerns about this issue make sure they’re discussed with your plastic surgeon prior to implant removal.

There is no consensus on drains after implant removal

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

Drains are placed after some breast operations in order to collect any fluid that may accummulate. They also help to close down what is known as "surgical dead space." Dead space is the area where the implants previously lived before being removed. Whether or not the capsule is removed, there is a large space that needs to close down again once breast implants are removed. Placing a drain helps to facilitate that process.

Kevin Brenner, MD, FACS
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 23 reviews

Drains are not always necessary after he breast explantation when adding new implants

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

It may not be necessary to receive drains when performing a breast implant exchange. However, if you are not receiving a new set of implants or a breast lift the initial pocket may extremely fluid and may cause a hematoma, seroma, or create an environment for an infection. In this case, your plastic surgeon may recommend the use of drains to completely decompress this pocket until it has healed.

You might also like...


{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}
Whether or not drains are used is up to the surgeon and depends on the amount of work that was done and whether they expect fluid to build up in the space.

Drains for implant removal

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

To use drains or not really depends upon the situtation and wheter I anticipate alot of fluid collecting in the dead space.

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

Use of drains with breast implant removal (explantation)

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

I have generally trended away from the use of drains. If performing a capsulectomy, I believe the rau tissues are more "sticky" and in existing capsules which are left in place, I beileive the prolonged drainage may cause the drains to remain in place for a longer period of time than is necessary.

Otto Joseph Placik, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 86 reviews

Are Drains needed in Breast Implant Removal Surgery?

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

No, drains are usually not needed for breast implant removal surgery. 

They are often used if the urgeon feels that fluid acclumulation is likely, such as when a breast implant capsule excision is done, or if the implants were removed to treat an infection.

Fredrick A. Valauri, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon

Drains often necessary after breast implant removal

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

I generally use drains very conservatively. That being said when there is a significant capsulectomy at the time of implant removal I always use drains. There is a significant "dead space" after implant removal which is a set up for a hematoma or seroma. If new implant are placed and the procedure is fairly dry I would consider not placing drains.

York Jay Yates, MD
Salt Lake City Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 189 reviews

Probably need drains for breast explantation

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

I usually use drains on breast redo's espcecially if the capsule is removed. It will help evcuate fluid and speed your recovery. They don't stay in long, just a few days. I place them in the armpit so that they are hidden and I place them in such a way that it's not uncomfortabel to remove them. Hope this helps.

Michael Diaz, MD
Melbourne Plastic Surgeon

Yes, you should

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

I guess it depends on how long your implants have been in. If they have been in long enough to allow a capsule to form (a feww months) a drain will help the capsule heal down on itself and hopefully prevent fluid from collecting requiring treatment. Some plastic surgeons will have their own thoughts so discuss this with your plastic surgeon. Best of luck.

Dr Edwards

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.