What is Incision and Drainage of Abscess?
Abscesses (boils) are skin infections that are inflamed and contain pus. Incision and drainage is a procedure performed to clear large, growing and painful abscesses of pus.
Procedure of Incision and Drainage of Abscess
The procedure is performed under local anesthesia and takes about 45 minutes. Your doctor makes a small incision and drains the pus using a catheter (thin long tube), syringe, or just by squeezing the abscess. The area is flushed with sterile water. Your doctor may use special tools to explore further into the incision. A sample of the infected region is removed with a cotton swab for testing in the laboratory. Your doctor may pack the wound with gauze and cover with a dressing to prevent the recurrence of the abscess. Your wound will recover in about 14 days.
Risks and Complications of Incision and Drainage of Abscess
As with all surgeries, incision and drainage of an abscess may be associated with complications such as pain, bleeding, redness, swelling, fever, rash and scarring at the site of the abscess.