Lynchburg Journal of Medical Science

Lynchburg Journal of Medical Science


Dr. Elyse Watkins



Treatment for subcutaneous abscess has traditionally been incision and drainage (I&D) with the packing of Iodoform. The I&D procedure has been widely performed by different specialties of clinicians in settings such as family practice, urgent care, dermatology office, emergency room, and the operating room. It is a basic procedure that all clinicians were taught how to perform early in their training. There is an alternative technique to the standard I&D called the incision and loop drainage or just loop drainage. The advantage of loop drainage is it is less invasive and requires no iodoform packing. Studies have shown the loop drainage technique has less failure rate when compared to the standard I&D technique.1 The loop drainage technique is less invasive and cosmetically better for wound healing.2 The patient will ultimately benefit if all clinicians can incorporate this technique into their practice.


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