STITCHES & AFTERCARE
After most minor surgical procedures a light dressing is applied to the site. The purpose of this dressing is to absorb any fluid that may discharge from your wound, provide and protect the area as your wound heals and if necessary can apply pressure to the wound.
Most dressings, dependant on where the wound is on your body, can stay in place for up to 7 days. You will be advised on the day by the Doctor how many days your wound needs to be dressed for. If required you will be given additional dressing for you to take home, and the nurse will advise you on how and when to change it.
Before changing or touching your dressing, always wash your hands with soap and water, ensuring that they are completely dried. Carefully take the dressing off, avoiding touching the wound with your fingers directly. In some cases after the 7 days your wound may be left without dressing if it is healing well, however you may want to continue wearing one over the area for protection or to avoid rubbing of garments.
Its advised that you avoid getting the dressing wet and aim to shower (or bathe if you can keep your wound out of the water) about 48 hours after your procedure.
Soaking in water may weaken the scar tissue, and could cause your wound to re-open. Try to gently wash around your wound area without using soap.
Some minor surgery procedures will require the wound to be closed with stitches or sutures. At our clinic we use two different types of stitches, dissolvable or non-dissolvable.
Non-Dissolvable stitches will need to be removed after 7 to 14 days (dependant on the site, procedure or preference of the Doctor). After this time you can either re-attend our clinic to have the stitches removed, or attend your GP practice or walk-in centre if this is more convenient. There is no additional cost if you wish to return to us to have your stitches removed.
Dissolvable stitches usually disappear in about 1 to 3 weeks, and do not need removing. It is vital that you avoid getting dissolvable stitches wet as this could affect the healing of your wound.
It is possible that you may see small pieces of your stitches poking from the wound, please do not be tempted to pull on these.
If you have received treatment from us and are concerned with the way your wound is healing, or have any queries with caring for your wound please do not hesitate to contact us.
Our main office number is:
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Please note that this is an administrators line, and they are not medically trained. They will take notes of your queries and pass them onto the doctor who performed your procedure or another medically trained staff member. You will be contacted by our team as soon as possible with instructions, advice or arrange for you to re-attend the clinic.
If your query or concern is urgent please contact your GP, A&E or walk-in centre.
If your wound has become more painful, feels tender, looks red or inflamed, is leaking liquid, pus, blood or smells unpleasant, there is a possibility you may have a wound infection. As with any medical procedure where incisions are made into the skin there is a risk of a wound infection, our doctors and nurses will do all they can to prevent an infection however it is important that you know how to spot if you're developing an infection after you go home.
A surgical wound infection can develop 2 to 3 days after your surgery.