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Consensus Guideline

Pleural Drains in Adults

Section 3: Management

In this section

Management and trouble shooting of pleural drains

If multiple drains are present, label each drain so that they can be easily identified (e.g. apical or basal drain).

  • All patients with a pleural drain should be cared for by a medical or surgical team experienced with intercostal catheter management and nursed on a ward familiar with the care of intercostal catheters and drainage systems.
  • The UWSD should be kept below the level of the patient's chest at all times.
  • Reassure the patient frequently and reinforce their need to adhere to the correct UWSD position.
  • Provide adequate pain relief whilst a pleural drain is in situ.