Suture Line Care Checklist
______ Keep area covered for ________ hours with original dressing,
______ Apply ice packs to area for 24 hours.
______ Change dressing daily for _______ days.
______ Leave incision open to air.
______ Keep area dry. Cover with plastic wrap when showering for ______ days. Apply
a new dry dressing if your dressing becomes wet. Do not swim; soak in a bathtub
or hot tub until incisions are completely healed. It may take about 2 weeks to
______ Leave steri-strips (thin white tapes) on until they peel off by themselves; they
often fall off in 5 – 7 days.
______ Apply antibiotic ointment ____ times a day for ____ days.
______ Use Tylenol® for minor pain. Follow the directions on the bottle. Discuss any
other pain medicine with your doctor. Avoid aspirin which increases bleeding
unless your doctor tells you it is okay.
When to Call your Doctor
ξ Incision is red or warm to touch
ξ Pus-like drainage
ξ Temperature (by mouth) is greater than 100.4 θF or 38 θC, for two readings taken 4
ξ Excess swelling or bleeding or bruising
ξ Pain you cannot control with your pain pills
Call with questions and or problems.
Monday - Friday 8:00 am to 4:30 pm
_______________________________ Clinic at (608) _________________
After hours, weekends and holidays
The clinic phone number will be answered by the paging operator. Ask for the doctor on call for
Dr. ___________________________________. Leave your name and phone number with the
area code. The doctor will call you back.
If you live out of the area please call: Toll Free: 1-800-323-8942
The Spanish version of this Health Facts for You is #4268s
Your health care team may have given you this information as part of your care. If so, please use it and call if you have
any questions. If this information was not given to you as part of your care, please check with your doctor. This is not
medical advice. This is not to be used for diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. Because each person’s health
needs are different, you should talk with your doctor or others on your health care team when using this information. If
you have an emergency, please call 911. Copyright ©9/2017 University of Wisconsin Hospitals & Clinics Authority, All
rights reserved. Produced by the Department of Nursing. HF#4268