Topic: External drains-long term?

Hi,  wonder if anyone can ring in here with their external drain experiences?  my brother is newly diagnosed, had an external drain put in 10 days ago, having problem now with leakage.  Are these a permanent part of his life now?  Will the external drain eventually go away and be replaced by a metal stent?  How long have some of you had them?  Hoping to give him some positive, or at least helpful, information when i see him tomorrow!
thanks!
Candy

Re: External drains-long term?

I have had mine for over a month. It has possibly settled down now so there is hope of a comfortable coexistence with the horrible thing.

Big hugs to your brother. I think the leaking drain caused me more actual pain than the liver surgery did.

Kris

Cancer is a word, not a sentence.

36 year old patient with buckets of hope

Re: External drains-long term?

Thank you Kris, I will pass that info on to my brother.  He's been pretty worried about how much pain he's been having since it was put in.

Re: External drains-long term?

Candy - my husband was diagnosed in March 07 and had his first drains put in the first week of April.  At first he had tons of problems with them and had to have them changed out 7 times in just over a weeks time.  He went all summer with no problems then in November he started having problems with them again and has had to have them replaced 5 times.  They really don't bother my husband at all, we were told from the begining that they can be very problematic and our doctor doesn't seem to keen on placing metal stents just yet. - Colleen

Re: External drains-long term?

My dad had his in for about 4 weeks with leakage once.

He just experienced some internal bleeding b/c the tube was rubbing on something inside causing an ulcer.  So now now external bag - just stents on both sides...

Re: External drains-long term?

My sister had drains put in after the drs determined that her liver could not be resected. They kept the drains in and open for a week and then reversed them into stents all inside. We're hoping for good things, no infections and clogging etc. Did anyone here have better or worse experiences with stents vs. catheters?

Re: External drains-long term?

Please do not lose hope. My husband was diagnosed December 6th 2006. He had 2 drains put in and had enormous problems with leakage and worst of all the caustic nature of bile inflaming the skin around the openings. By the way he did not qualify for a whipple on top of all this and things looked pretty grim.  His surgeon later put 2 stents (metal) in, removed those 2 drains and lo and behold he's been great every since! Luckily, no infection, clogging, knock on wood.  He is, and has been since April 2007, on a course of Gemzar (which he tolerates very well) and his disease has been kept in check--------not gone-----------but no mets.  Please look into stents with your doctor/doctors.  There is no way we would be able to carry on normally with the unpredictability of those drains.  Good Luck!

Re: External drains-long term?

I am on month 3 and counting, but boy do I wish they would remove them. I am out of commission at least 3 or 4 days a week do to leakage, pain, and the fun allergy I have developed to medical grade plastic.

Cancer is a word, not a sentence.

36 year old patient with buckets of hope

Re: External drains-long term?

I can sympathize. My sister detested them and had them less than three weeks. She's been sleeping ever so much better since they did the reversal too. Will your drs do it for you? I hope so. Best of luck and keep up the wonderful sense of humor. The Lord knows that bile drains and stents sure aren't all that humorous at all.