Other tests that you probably have had performed, such as an ultrasound scan or a CT scan, will have shown that you have an abnormal collection of fluid, usually either in the chest or the abdomen. In the chest, this can make breathing difficult, and in the abdomen this can be uncomfortable. The fluid collection can be drained by inserting a fine plastic tube, called a drainage catheter, into it through the skin with only a tiny incision. This procedure is called Percutaneous (through the skin) drainage.
If the fluid rapidly re-accumulates after the drain is removed, to avoid repeated drainage procedures, a tunnelled or semi-permanent drain can be inserted. This is a drainage tube which is inserted once and remains inserted, with the end of the drain outside of the body, hidden under a bandage when not in use. When the fluid re-accumulates, a special drainage bottle is temporarily attached to withdraw the fluid.