Wound Care Instructions
Leave the pressure dressing DRY and IN PLACE for 24 hours after surgery. You may reinforce the bandage with tape if needed. After two days, remove the pressure bandage, clean the site with mild soap and water, pat dry, liberally apply Vaseline or Aquaphor to the wound, and then cover with a new bandage. Repeat this process daily until the site is fully healed. If present, dried blood may be removed by soaking and cleansing with hydrogen peroxide.
While it is normal to experience some swelling and bruising around the surgical site, there are steps you can take to minimize this:
- If the surgical site involved your face or scalp: Sleep in a recliner or with your head elevated on at least two pillows for 2-3 days after surgery. Avoid bending over, heavy lifting and strenuous activity for at least 2-3 days after surgery
- Periodically apply an ice pack to the skin surrounding the surgical site.
- Avoid sleeping on the side of your body that was operated upon.
If your wound begins to bleed: If the bandage is saturated with blood, remove it so that direct pressure can be applied to the wound. Using a clean, dry washcloth or gauze, apply continuous pressure directly to the wound for 30 minutes (time it). Repeat with an ice pack if needed. If rapid bleeding continues after these measures, contact our office at 201.623.8000. If you are unable to reach someone, report to the emergency room.
If you have pain after surgery: Please take any prescribed pain medication as directed. We recommend extra-strength Tylenol for pain after surgery. Call if you have severe pain not controlled with Tylenol. Avoid ibuprofen, aspirin, naproxen and other NSAID pain medications for one week following surgery UNLESS PRESCRIBED FOR ANOTHER MEDICAL CONDITION. If you have questions or concerns, or develop excessive bleeding, fever, chills, or pus drains from your wound, call our office at 201.623.8000
Wounds without stitches: The wound will heal on its own, from the outside edges to the center, without stitches. It is important to keep Vaseline or Aquaphor ointment on the wound so that a scab does not form. The edges of the wound will become slightly reddened and you may see some yellowish matter inside of the wound. This is normal appearance of a healing wound. These are NOT signs of infection. As you clean the wound, there may be some pinpoint areas of bleeding from the base.
You may be scheduled for a wound check a few weeks after surgery. If you wound is well-healed and you have no concerns, you may cancel this appointment (please call to let us know).
After your stitches have been removed, you may use a silicone gel or strips such as ScarAway at bedtime to minimize scarring. Silicone bandages can be purchased at your local pharmacy.. Avoid strenuous physical activity for at least one week following surgery.