Integral to your quick recovery from surgery is good post-operative care. This does not stop when you leave hospital, but actually continues until Mr Pacifico discharges you from follow-up after your complete recovery from your procedure. You will be given instructions on leaving hospital so will know what to do (and what not to do) once you get home.
Appropriate follow-up arrangements will be made for you on discharge from hospital, which will involve appointments to see both the nurses and Mr Pacifico in the outpatient clinic.
The following are some general rules for looking after your wounds after surgery. They are intended as a guide, so if in any doubt, please contact Mr Pacifico’s team.
Mr Pacifico will usually tape your surgical wounds using surgical tape. This should stay in place for up to 2-weeks and is shower-proof.
You can shower after the operation, as long as the shower does not spray directly onto the surgical tapes (otherwise these may lift off early). Therefore if you have had surgery to your breasts or abdomen, for example, you should stand with your back to the shower. After showering the tapes may be dried by dabbing gently with a clean towel or kitchen towel, or alternatively a hairdryer on a cool setting may be used.
Any tape that starts to peel off may be trimmed back with a clean pair of scissors. If you are worried, you should contact Mr Pacifico’s office or the hospital in which you have had your operation.
It is common for there to be a small amount of bleeding from the wounds onto the tapes up to the first day after surgery. If you are concerned that there is a significant amount of bleeding, the bleeding continues or for any other reason, again, you should contact Mr Pacifico’s office or the hospital in which you had your operation.
There are several important signs that may suggest problems with your wound. These include:
- Increasing pain at the wound site
- A red colour developing around the wound
- A discharge from the wound (not including the minor bleeding that virtually always occurs a few hours after your operation)
- A generalised feeling of being unwell
- A rising temperature above 38°C
- Feeling nauseous and vomiting
Should you notice any of these symptoms you should get back in contact for an urgent review.
Please see the webpage on How To Achieve the Best Scars Possible for more information on this. To improve the appearance of your scars, the following may help:
- About a week following the removal of your stitches you should start to massage your scar. Dermaclear High Potency Vitamin E cream is ideal for this. This will also help moisturise the scar at the same time
- Using silicone-based tapes or creams on the scar may help the scar to become soft and flat sooner than it would otherwise. They may also prevent the scar from becoming hypertrophic (red and lumpy).
The best place to call in an emergency is the hospital at which your operation was performed – they will then be able to contact Mr Pacifico directly. If for some reason you are unable to contact the hospital or you have travelled away, please contact the nearest accident and emergency department.