Please read the following information carefully:
- You may resume showering the day after your procedure.
- Please remove your bandage before the shower and gently wash the incision with soap and water daily.
- Please dab the incision dry afterwards and apply a light application of Vaseline and a band-aid. If the incision is on your face, you may opt to the leave it open to the air during healing.
- Do not apply Polysporin as many patients will develop a reaction following prolonged use, which may resemble a wound infection.
- Do not apply hydrogen peroxide or other topical treatments as these can be quite harsh on the incision and may impede wound healing.
- Mild bleeding may occur at the surgical site. If bleeding occurs, please apply constant pressure to the site for 15 minutes. If bleeding continues, please contact our office immediately if any concerns. If our office is closed, please present to your family doctor’s office or a local emergency room.
- I recommend smoking cessation for 4 weeks pre- and post-operatively to decrease risk of infection and wound healing complications. Nicotine supplements are also not recommended given similar risk of complications.
- Over-the-counter medication may reduce discomfort after the local freezing wears off. Tylenol or Extra-Strength Tylenol may be used. Advil, Aleve, or other anti-inflammatories may increase your risk of mild bleeding and should be avoided if possible.
- Mild redness is often seen at the surgical site in reaction to the sutures. If this extends beyond a thumb’s breadth or if you notice any of the following signs, please contact our office and arrange urgent follow-up:
- Increasing redness around the surgical site and/or drainage from the wound
- Increasing pain
- Please refrain from strenuous activity or exercise for 2 weeks after your procedure. Any activity that increases your heart rate and blood pressure also increases your risk of bleeding and increased swelling.
- For facial procedures, you may wish to elevate your head on 2-3 pillows while sleeping to reduce swelling. Cold compresses may also be used for the first 48 hours following surgery. Please do not place ice directly on your skin; an interface such as a facecloth is recommended to avoid cold injury.
- For lower extremity procedures, it is recommended to elevate your leg as frequently as possible over the first few days post-operatively. This will reduce swelling and may lower the risk of wound healing complications.
- Surgical removal of a skin lesion will always leave a scar. The goal is to place this in such a way that its appearance becomes subtle over time. Following suture removal, sunscreen is recommended at the surgical site for one year post-operatively to optimize healing and to allow the scar to fade. You should begin scar massage approximately three weeks after your procedure to thin and soften the underlying scar. Final scar appearance will be seen at one year following surgery.
- Your follow up appointment for suture removal, if required, will be scheduled for you when leaving the office today.
If you have any questions during your post-operative course, please do not hesitate to contact our office.