Tube or Drain Removal in Interventional Radiology
This handout was prepared to help answer some of the common questions patients may have after having a tube or drain removed in the Interventional Radiology Clinic. If you have any more questions or concerns, please feel free to ask the doctor or nurse taking care of you.
The doctor who removed your tube today was Dr. ______________________.
The nurse who reviewed this handout with you today is _________________RN.
Your Care at Home after Your Tube or Drain is Removed
You may eat or drink what you would like once you arrive home except alcoholic drinks. Do not drink alcohol for 24 hours.
For the first 24 hours do not do any strenuous activities. Do not lift more than 10 pounds. Resume your normal routine after 24 hours.
Remove the dressing over the site the next morning. You do not need to put on a new dressing if the drainage has stopped.
If the Site Keeps Draining
If the site keeps draining, a new dressing should be applied daily using tape and gauze. You may need to change the dressing more often if there is a large amount of drainage. You may stop using the dressings and leave site open to air once all drainage has stopped for 24 hours.
If You Are Sent Home with a Drainage Bag over the Site
If you are sent home with drainage bag over the site you may remove bag once drainage has stopped. This is most often in 1-3 days. Once the bag is removed, apply dressing using tegaderm and gauze daily, or more often if there is a large amount of drainage. You may stop doing dressing changes and leave site open to air once drainage from the site has stopped for 24 hours.
Showers and Baths
You may shower 24 hours after your drain has been removed if no drainage bag has been applied. You may resume baths or whirlpools 3 days after all drainage has stopped from the site.
When to Call the Doctor
- If you have more than a teaspoon of bleeding at the site.
- If you have extreme dizziness, or feel faint or light-headed.
- If your pain around the site gets worse rather than better 2-3 days after the drain is removed.
- If you are not feeling well, check your temperature. If you have a fever greater than 100.4°F (38°C), please call your primary doctor.
- If you have any questions or problems once you are home.
- Drainage that persists for more than 3 days.
If You Had Sedation
You must make sure you have an adult to take you home after your sedation. You will not be allowed to leave alone or drive yourself home. Side effects are few, but you may feel drowsy the rest of the day. We suggest that you do not return to work and that you are not left alone.
For the first 12 hours after you get home
- Do not drive a car or operate machinery.
- Do not drink alcohol.
- Do not make important personal or business decisions or sign legal documents.
- Avoid activities such as swimming, biking etc.
Who to Call With Questions after Discharge
Radiology Department (608) 263-9729 during the day (8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.).
Evenings and weekends this number will be answered by the paging operator. Ask for the Interventional Radiology Resident on call. Leave your name and phone number with the area code. The doctor will call you back.
If you live out of the area, please call the paging operator at 1-800-323-8942.
The information provided should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed physician should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Call 911 for all medical emergencies. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited.
Last Updated: 02/28/2013
Copyright © 02/25/2013 University of Wisconsin Hospitals and Clinics Authority. All rights reserved. Produced by the Department of Nursing. HF#6574
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