Packing stuck in abscess (perirectal abscess)

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New Member

Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 6/4/2008 6:13 PM (GMT -7)   

Have a question re my abscess and the packing.

I have recently had a perirectal abscess opened up and drained and cleaned under surgery. Note the abscess is probably about the size of 1.5 finger (1.5x in length, finger sized circumference).

Before I left the hospital, the nurse had repacked the wound with gauze. This will be done daily with a home visit nurse.

The next day, the nurse comes and said that the packing from the previous day was no longer there. The only chance of it falling out would've been when I went to use my bowels but I did not notice it falling out.

But we went along with the assumption was that it had fallen out and the nurse had packed a new gauze inside.

My concern is that the original piece of packing had fallen deep into the abscess and hence the nurse could not see it and is now stuck inside.

My questions are:
- is it dangerous to leave the packing inside? (that should be obvious)
- how can I know if it is still inside?
- if it's still inside, how would I go about getting it out?
- how do I prevent the packing from falling into the abscess?


Veteran Member

Date Joined Sep 2005
Total Posts : 517
   Posted 6/4/2008 6:21 PM (GMT -7)   
how many days before the post op instructions tell you to discontinue gauze? and then add baths? In my case packing did come out after you have added salt baths >>as a result of sitting in the bath.

Aimee =)
Veteran Member

Date Joined Jun 2004
Total Posts : 1020
   Posted 6/4/2008 6:44 PM (GMT -7)   
I had pilonidal cyst surgery and the wound was left open with packing inside that had to be changed each day. My DH had to change it daily. He missed a small piece of gauze and it got left in there a couple of days. It smelled like death - it was the most rancid disgusting thing you've smelled. I would think the absess packing would be the same - that you would start to smell it after a day or two. Just guessing.

When in doubt, it's never a bad idea to have your doctor's office take a look.
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