Do drains hurt while being removed? (Photo)

Tummy Tuck surgery completed on October 24th; no complications. On Friday the doctor decide to keep my drains in he explained the reason, I just dont believe he explain clearly if it will hurt me when he does take them out this Thursday.

Doctor Answers 7

Do drains hurt while being removed? (Photo)

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Taking drains out should not hurt or at least not give you any anxiety about taking them out.

Ron Hazani, MD

Beverly Hills General Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 318 reviews

Do drains hurt while being removed?

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Thank you for your question. Yes, removal of a drain can cause a stinging discomfort for several seconds after its removal.


The use of local anesthesia may be an option to help alleviate any discomfort associated with drain removal.  Discuss this option with your surgeon.

I hope this helps.

Tummy Tuck Drains

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I do not use drains any more with this procedure and have switched from pain pumps to Exparel  which is a long acting injectable pain medicine like Lidocaine or Marcaine but lasts for three days. This is injected all along the muscle and skin to provide pain relief.   This is termed the Pain-less, Drainless Tummy Tuck.

If you go to a doctor who uses #drains, they usually stay in 3-5 days but may be required to remain in longer. There is always a chance that drain removal may hurt. It is best to contact your surgeon to gain recommendation of what to expect with the drain removal and if their procedure will cause you any pain. Good luck.

Jed H. Horowitz, MD, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 116 reviews

Drain removal

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THere is some discomfort with drain removal but most tolerate it extremely well. Anxiety about it, will make it worse.

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

Do drains hurt while being removed ?

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Thank you for the question. Unfortunately they do but the removal happens quickly and the pain doesn't last after they are removed. 

For this reason and also for the inconvenience and discomfort that they cause I stopped using drains during my abdominoplasty procedures altogether. I perform quilting stitches to minimize the abdominal space that fluid collects in therefore negating their use. 

Take pain medication before visiting your doctor and ask your doctor to remove the suction before pulling them out. That should help. 

Good luck!

Dr. Khuthaila 

Dana Khuthaila, MD, FACS
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 77 reviews

Postop Drain Removal

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Cooky.  At the time of drain removal, you may feel a modest amount of pain or discomfort for about 5 seconds. Drains can be a necessary evil after surgery and prevent further possible complications. If you are very sensitive, take a pain pill one hour before your appointment for drain removal Good luck!

Robert M. Tornambe, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 33 reviews

Pain from removing drains

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Without knowing which drains were used, it's hard to answer your question.  If the diameter of the drains is the same inside your body as it is outside your body (e.g. Blake Drains), then it does not hurt to remove them.  Ask your PS for details.  

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.