Tonight’s post is a clinical one…with a SL (silver lining), of course.
One of the post-surgical components of a double mastectomy & reconstruction is a Jackson-Pratt drain, a/k/a a JP Drain.
A Jackson-Pratt drain (or JP drain) is a surgical drainage device that removes excess fluid that can collect inside your body after surgery.
When fluid builds up in a post-surgical site, the area may not heal as fast as it should, or (even worse) cause an infection. Too much fluid in a post-surgical area may also cause pain, swelling and infection. Using a JP drain after surgery usually helps you heal faster and helps clear away pus. Yes, pus. I never said that this would be pretty.
A JP Drain looks essentially like a plastic hand grenade. Seriously. …and I woke up with 4 of them. Yes, FOUR. They are quite uncomfortable. When it comes to sleeping, I felt like the Princess and the Pea…having to position myself just so. No matter what, though, I woke up in the night being jabbed by one of them. Middle-of-the-night F-Bombs dropped regularly.
The JP drains are emptied (and contents measured) twice a day. The Brookside Husband has been nothing short of extraordinary (as I know you already know!). Twice a day, we had our emptying routine. Alcohol wipes. Measuring Cups. Emptying. Cleaning. Re-cleaning. He even remembered from High School Chemistry Class that containers need to be rinsed three times. Impressive.
The drains have to stay in place until less than 30 milliliters of fluid are drained from each in a day. CC’s and ML’s are the same, by the way.
Well, onto the SL of the day. I had a check-up appointment in LA today with my plastic surgeon. Still sooooo bizarre to say that I have a plastic surgeon. Really? Well, yes, as a matter of fact, I do. He is ultra-conservative, which I deeply value in any plastic surgeon, but especially mine. He was so happy with the minimal output of all four drains that he removed them ALL. Now, this did hurt like a M-F; however, it was absolutely 150% worth the joy of it! YIPPPEEEEE!
As of this post, I am drain free and healing well. So, take THAT, FBC! :–)
I have to keep reminding myself that I have to continue to move S L O W L Y. No lifting my elbows. No picking anything up over 5 lbs. Still lots of “No’s”…however, I’m focusing on the SL Yes’s!