The nature and indications for thyroid surgery vary and a perceived risk of postoperative complications such as seroma , haematoma , wound infection and haemorrhage post-surgery is one reason why wound drains are frequently inserted. They are generally used as a matter of the surgeon’s habit or preference more than a matter of proven benefit in the patient’s postoperative period.
To evaluate the differences in outcome and complications following thyroid surgery whether draining the wound or not .
PATIENTS AND METHODS:
One hundred forty five patients with different thyroid diseases requiring surgical intervention presenting to the first surgical unit in Baghdad teaching hospital between the first of October 2007 to the 31th of December 2009(27 months period) were enrolled. Patients were divided into two groups : those who had their wounds drained postoperatively ; (the drain group DG) and those who had their wounds closed without drain ; (the non drain group NG).
Seroma occurred in three patients (3%) in the DG, and in two patients (4.4%) in the NG. Small haematoma occurred in three patients (3%) in the DG, and in two patients (4.4%) in the NG. Large haematoma occurred only in one patients (1%) in the DG, and it didn't occur in the NG. Wound infection occurs only in two patients (2%) in the DG, and in one patient (2.2%) in the NG. The mean of in-hospital stay was 2.07 days in the DG, and 1.06 days in the NG.
The use of drain showed no effect on the prevention of wound infection , seroma , haematoma formation or the need for re-exploration, indeed the use of drain had lengthened the in hospital stay .So the Routine use of drains after thyroid surgery might be therefore not necessary, if not detrimental.