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4
Incision Care
If you have a dressing or bandage on your incision, you should
remove the dressing after _____ hours. If you will need to keep a
dressing on your incision, you will be taught how to change it.
If you have stitches or staples on your incision, they will be removed
in the doctor’s office in about 7-14 days.
If you have small paper-like strips, called steri-strips, on your
incision, they will fall off in 7-10 days. The staff may remove them at
your first doctor’s follow up visit.
To prevent an infection in your incision, keep it dry and clean. Each
day, wash it with soap and water then gently pat it dry. Do not put
lotions or powders on your incision.
If you go home with a drain, your nurse will teach you how to care
for it.
You can shower but do not take a bath, swim or get in a hot tub until
allowed by your doctor.
Call your doctor right away if you have:
Increased drainage or bleeding
Nausea or vomiting lasting more than 12 hours
Sudden, severe pain or pain not relieved by medicine
A fever over 101 degrees Fahrenheit
Increased swelling, redness or drainage at the incision