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Use of a Suction drain in Thyroid Surgery


K. M. G. S. S. S. Wijesinghe ,

National Hospital of Sri Lanka, LK
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D. S. C. Perera,

National Hospital of Sri Lanka, LK
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D. M. K. Mahathanthila,

National Hospital of Sri Lanka, LK
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A. S. Pallewatta,

National Hospital of Sri Lanka, LK
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C. Jayasuriya

National Hospital of Sri Lanka, LK
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The use of a suction drain in Thyroid surgery is in common practice. This is done mainly to ‘prevent’ formation of haematomas and seromas on the Thyroid bed and subsequently to reduce complications and hospital stay.



The aim of this study is to determine the efficacy of routine drainage after Thyroid surgery.



A randomized prospective control trial was conducted on 50 patients over a period of ten months. These patients were randomly allocated to drained and non-drained groups. The surgeon was informed of the group just before the closure of the wound. Post-operative ultrasound scan neck was done on second post-operative day by the Radiologist to assess the amount of fluid on the thyroid bed. Wound infection, seroma and heamatoma formation were assessed during the hospital stay and 1st and 2nd week after surgery. Post-operative pain was also assessed on postoperative day 2. The data were analysed using two sample T-test.



Both groups were homogenous according to the age, size of the gland, type of the procedure performed and histopathological diagnosis. There was no significant collection of fluid on the Thyroid bed assessed by the USS scan on day 2 in the 2 groups (P = 0.1016). But the length of hospital stay was significantly reduced amongst the non-drained group (P = 0.0002). None of the patients in either group had post-operativeseroma orheamatoma and did not require reoperation for post-operative bleeding. No significant difference in post-operative pain was observed amongst two groups (P = 0.6818).



Routine insertion of suction drain following Thyroid surgery is not necessary. Not applying a drain to the wound, resulted in decreased hospital stay. Post-operative pain is not increased significantly by inserting a drain.
How to Cite: Wijesinghe, K.M.G.S.S.S., Perera, D.S.C., Mahathanthila, D.M.K., Pallewatta, A.S. and Jayasuriya, C., 2017. Use of a Suction drain in Thyroid Surgery. Ceylon Journal of Otolaryngology, 5(1), pp.24–27. DOI:
Published on 25 Jan 2017.
Peer Reviewed


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