Wash your hands with soap and water. Gently clean the site using a clean Q-tip or gauze pad with ½ strength Hydrogen Peroxide (dilute 50% hydrogen peroxide & 50% water) daily. Do not use well water. Apply petroleum jelly (Vaseline) to the wound site.
Do not allow a crust to form in the wound or surgery site; if crusting should form, gently remove the crust with a cotton swab and hydrogen peroxide. If the wound is kept moist daily with petroleum jelly, a crust will not form. Crusting and scabs delay wound healing.
Cover the wound daily with either a band-aid or non-stick pad. If any signs of infection appear (redness, pain, swelling, pus), I need to see you to treat you. Call us and let us know that you are coming in. If the clinic is not open, go to your primary care physician or urgent care for evaluation and treatment. If you are experiencing any problems with bleeding, apply sustained pressure to the wound for 30 minutes. If the bleeding does not stop, come in or go to your nearest emergency room or urgent care center. Always make me aware of any problems.
A biopsy is the removal of a small sample of skin, sometimes a stitch is placed. The piece of tissue is sent to a pathologist that examines the tissue under a microscope and renders a diagnosis. The pathologist will fax Dr. Corvette a copy of the report within 7 days. I have a “no news means no news” policy; If you do not hear from the office within 2 weeks, please call for the results. You never know if we have been trying to inform you and we have been unsuccessful. The results of the biopsy are reviewed with you in the clinic within 2 weeks after biopsy.
You will notice three fees:
1. Dr. Corvette’s fee for performing the biopsy.
2. Laboratory fee for the preparation of the biopsy.
3. Pathologist fee for the microscope reading of the tissue.
If you have any questions regarding fee #2 or #3; please contact the pathology laboratory.
Aftercare Following Stitch Removal
Once your sutures are removed, the surgical site generally needs no special treatment. You can stop covering the site with a Band-Aid or dressing. If the area remains a little crusty, apply petroleum jelly until the wound has healed. The surgical site will continue to heal over the next six to twelve months. Numbness may occur over the surgical site, and typically improves with time. The scar should flatten within 6 months. Massage wound 3 times a day with any moisturizer. This will help to flatten the scar. If the scar does not flatten after 1 month (or if you have any concerns), see Dr. Corvette. Postoperative patients will always be worked into my clinic; just call the office and let us know that you are on your way.
Sunscreen is your friend. Use an SPF 25 which blocks both UVA and UVB daily rain or shine, winter, summer, spring and fall.
If Your Surgery Was Due to Cancer
Expect another skin cancer. You will be asked to schedule dermatology appointments twice a year-I will perform a full body skin examination. If you notice a non-healing spot, new bump or changing mole in the interim; come in for an evaluation. Please don’t diagnose yourself.
For more detailed information, please refer to the American Academy of Dermatology.