Caring for your Skin Graft
Exceptional Service – Every Patient, Every Time
Zitelli & Brodland
Skin Graft Treatment
- No strenuous activity for 48 hours.
- Resume moderate activity after 48 hours.
- No heavy exercising until you are seen for your follow up in one week.
- No aspirin or other over the counter products that contain aspirin and other blood thinners for 48 hours. Take Tylenol or aspirin free pain relievers as needed for discomfort.
- Continue taking all prescribed medication.
- No alcoholic beverages for 48 hours
- Leave the bandage in place until you come in for follow up in one week. If the bandage becomes blood tinged or loose, reinforce it with gauze and tape.
- Keep the bandage dry. Wash around it carefully.
- If the tape becomes soiled or starts to come off, reinforce it with additional paper tape.
- Do not smoke for 3 weeks; smoking is detrimental to wound healing and may cause the graft to die.
- Avoid prolonged exposure to extremely cold temperatures for 3 weeks.
- It is normal to have swelling and bruising around the surgical site. The bruising will fade in approximately 10-14 days.
- Elevate the area to reduce swelling.
- Numbness, itchiness and sensitivity to temperature changes can occur after surgery and may take up to 18 months to normalize.
Bleeding & pain
Bleeding – If this occurs do the following:
- Leave the bandage in place.
- Use rolled up gauze or a clean cloth to apply direct pressure over the bandage for 20 minutes straight.
- Reapply pressure for an additional 20 minutes if necessary.
- Call the office or go to the nearest emergency room if pressure fails to stop the bleeding.
- Use additional gauze and tape to reinforce the bandage once the bleeding has stopped.
- Post operative pain should slowly get better, never worse.
- A severe increase in pain may indicate a problem. Call the office if this occurs