Simple Wound Care – Dermatology Clinic
Supplies You Will Need
- Clean washcloths or gauze pads
- Clean towels
- Mild soap
- Cotton swabs (Q-tips®) or gauze pads
- Double antibiotic ointment or Vaseline®
- Band-Aids® or non stick Telfa pads
Clean Your Wound
Start to clean your wound after 24 hours. Clean the wound daily until new skin has sealed over the wound.
- Wash your hands with soap and water.
- Remove the old dressing.
- Use a clean washcloth or gauze pad. Gently wash each wound with soap and water.
- Apply the double antibiotic or Vaseline® to a clean cotton swab. Roll the cotton swab over the wound to spread the ointment. Use a clean cotton swab for each site.
- Cover with a Band-Aid® or non-stick Telfa pad that is thick enough to absorb drainage and protect the wound.
- Some wounds may bleed slightly.
- If bleeding does occur and soaks through your bandage, don’t change the bandage. Put a gauze pad on top of your bandage and apply constant pressure without letting up.
- If the bleeding does not stop after 20 minutes of constant pressure, call the clinic or go to your local emergency room.
- Bruises are common, and should go away in 2-3 weeks. No treatment is needed. If you have a bruise that appears to get worse after 2-3 days or if swelling increases after 24-48 hours, call the clinic.
Watch for any signs of infection.
- Temperature greater than 100.4°F by mouth for 2 readings taken 4 hours apart.
- Increased tenderness or swelling at the site.
- Increased blood or pus-like drainage.
- Redness that spreads out from the wound after 24-48 hours. Redness directly around the wound is part of the healing process
Most patients have little pain. If your wound is painful, you may take Tylenol® every 3-4 hours as needed. Do not take aspirin or ibuprofen products for 72 hours.
Stitches and Scarring
If you have stitches, you will come back to the clinic to have them taken out in 7-10 days or as directed by MD. If you live far away your local doctor can take them out.
You will have a scar at the wound site. Some scars may thicken and flatten out in 3-6 months. Thick scars may require more treatment. Time improves most scars. You may use cover-up makeup when the wound is healed.
Do not do any strenuous activity until okayed by your doctor. Ask if you are unsure.
No swimming or use of hot tubs for two weeks, or until the skin has closed over the area.
You will be called or a letter will be mailed to you in 7-14 days with the results of your test. A follow-up clinic visit may be scheduled.
If you have any questions or concerns call the Dermatology Clinic where you were seen weekdays between 8:00 am and 4:30 pm.
UW Clinic East Dermatology/Mohs Surgery West Dermatology/Derm
5249 E. Terrace Drive 451 Junction Rd.
Madison, Wi. 53718 Madison, Wi. 53717
(608)265-1288, option 2 (608)265-7670,
UW Clinic West Mohs Surgery
451 Junction Rd.
Madison WI 53717
608 265 6226
After hours, holidays and weekends, you will reach the paging operator. Ask for the Dermatology doctor on call. Leave your name and phone number with area code. The doctor will call you back.
If you live out of the area, call: 1-800-323-8942.
The Spanish version of this Health Facts for You is #6683.
The information provided should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed physician should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Call 911 for all medical emergencies. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited.
Last Updated: 10/20/2011
Copyright © 10/20/2011 University of Wisconsin Hospitals and Clinics Authority. All rights reserved. Produced by the Department of Nursing. HF#6408
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