For years, drains have been instruments that allow the patient tore cover after surgery, especially in the chest or abdomen. These devices will enable the exit of liquid or gases, natural or not, when the specialist requests their elimination from the body.
Historically, drains have represented a vital tool to guarantee the total recovery of a wound after surgery. Over the years, various devices have been developed that vary in size, shape, and drainage system.
Interestingly, the history of these small tools dates back to 460 B.C. when Hippocrates first described the use of a ''tube'' to drain a chest infection. After this, the drains' evolution climbed little by little to what we know today; several models, materials, and sizes.
Who would have thought that this small tool would be an essential device in the field of medicine and surgery today?
Drains allow the emptying of fluid collections that come from the recovery site, such as pus, blood, lymph, or other liquids.
If these fluids remain in the wound, they put pressure on the tissues there, including nerves, vessels, and even the point of healing, making the injury-prone to fail to heal, become infected, and finally open.
Any wound that does not close and drains properly slows down the healing process, causing pain and fluid buildup that promotes dangerous bacteria or any microorganisms. Quite dangerous, isn’t it?
Numerous studies have reported drainage failure during the recovery process; one of them is described by specialist Christopher B Horn and collaborators (1). He says that at least a quarter of the patients will fail to recover at home due to drainage failure. Among the risk factors that predispose to that failure is the complexity of the patient.
Another group of specialists explains that most thoracic drains' failure is associated with their displacement, resulting in early replacement and the need to suture the second drain. (2)
When we talk about suturing a drain, we mean that it is attached to the skin to stay in one place and reduce the chances of falling out. Although this is a widely used technique, it is only recommended for use within hospital facilities and limited time.
Having a drain attached to the skin can be beneficial in preventing displacement of the device, but at the same time, it is quite uncomfortable and poses some risk to the patient. Furthermore, the suture does not guarantee that the tube will not move since the sutures have an estimated time of function in the skin, and they are also likely to be loose.
Finding ideal drainage when thinking about the patient is difficult but not impossible, mainly because the current drains are either very thin, thick, or heavy and challenging to transport, considerably limiting the life of the one who carries it.
Ideal drainage should be light, firm, not too stiff, soft, and easy to transport. All aims not to represent an obstacle in the day's activities so that the patient can get back into his or her life routine as quickly as possible. Besides, a drainage system that is light and easy to carry also promotes recovery and reduces the rate of displacement and complications.
Classically, a safety pin has been used to carry the drainage. Although it has worked extensively, it is still not free of complications. It can also represent a risk if the needle moves out of place and worsens the drainage exit route.
In 2019, Casual Recovery launched a revolutionary medical garment that drastically changes the history of drains and their support. Casual Recovery Medical Garment is clothing specially designed to carry drainage devices.
This medical garment contains several compartments inside the layers. These compartments support a post-operative drainage device, allowing the patient to go anywhere he wants by carrying his instrument in a single pocket.
A specialist in plastic surgery, Dr. Sbitany, carried out a rigorous study to verify its effectiveness in the post-operative period, reaching two important conclusions (3):
The first is that the ability to wear a garment that, in turn, helps to transport and support the drains while decreasing the pull of it helped patients tolerate the drain for longer.
The second is that not only is it a drainage support garment, but it is also a tool that positively influenced the emotions of the people who wore it. According to Dr. Sbitany, the clothes made patients feel more comfortable, they rejoined their daily routine faster, and they felt more confident about going out in public.
It is gripping the tremendous impact that this clothing can have in the recovery period. We know that going through surgery is difficult, but it is even more challenging to isolate ourselves from our friends and family because we are condemned to a drainage device for a few months. If the recovery process is complicated, why not make it easier?
Of 30 patients surveyed, 97% felt more comfortable and motivated to continue daily activities, 100% confirmed that the garment reduced any complications, and 97% said their recovery was comfortable. 3
Likewise, Dr. Hani Sbitany assures that this garment is a significant improvement over the rest of the drainage management equipment.
Drain Care Wear has multiple benefits not only for the drainage system but also for the one wearing it:
- It has a double sleeve system that prevents drainage spillage
- Avoids drainage displacement by keeping it fixed in one place
- The drain and its collection device become less visible and safer from shocks, falls, or any external factor
- As it is not visible, it gives the patient confidence and security to go out in public, being a generous emotional support
The team behind this innovative garment is made up of an emergency physician, a fighting leader, and an expert pattern maker. This professional match results in a group committed to comfort, emotional well-being, and reducing complications in any patient undergoing major surgery.
Thanks to this, the rate of drainage complications decreases dramatically, and recovery is more successful and bearable. We are definitely in the presence of a new tool that improves both the classic drainage system and the life of those who wear it.