A Jackson-Pratt (JP) drain is used to remove fluids that build up in areas of your body after surgery or when you have an infection.
The JP drain is made up of 2 parts:
The rubber tube is placed in the area of your body where fluids may build up. The other end comes out through a small incision (cut). A squeeze bulb is attached to this end.
Ask your doctor or nurse before you take a shower when you have this drain. You may be asked to take a sponge bath until the drain is removed.
Items you will need are:
You may need to empty your drain every 3 or 4 hours the first day after surgery. After that, 2 times a day should be enough. Empty the drain before it gets full:
Write down the amount of fluid you drained out and the date and time each time you empty your JP drain. Flush the fluid down the toilet and wash your hands. Call your doctor when you have less then 25 cc (a little less than two tablespoons) of drainage.
You will need to empty the drain when it becomes heavy. Items you will need are:
Wash your hands with soap and water. Dry your hands and put on clean gloves. Loosen the tape carefully and take off the old bandage. Throw the old bandage into the plastic trash bag. Look for any new redness, swelling, bad odor, or pus.
Use a cotton swab dipped in the soapy water to clean the skin around the drain. Do this 3 or 4 times, using a new swab each time. Take off the first pair of medical gloves and put them in the plastic trash bag. Put on the second pair of gloves.
Put a new bandage around the JP tube entry site. Use surgical tape to hold it down against your skin. Tape the tubing to the bandages. Attach the bulb to your clothing with a safety pin. It should not hang loosely. Throw all used supplies in the trash bag. Wash your hands.
Monitor the drain bulb for fluid build-up. If there is no drainage after several hours, call your doctor.
If there is no fluid draining into the bulb, there may be a clot in the tubing. If you notice a clot in the tubing:
Call your doctor if: