UNIVERSITY OF WISCONSIN MEDICAL FOUNDATION
CLINICAL POLICY AND PROCEDURE
TITLE: Dressing Instruction for Patients
Post Dermatology Procedure
Effective Date: October, 2005 Approval: See Authorization
Supersedes Protocol: None Contact: Clinical Staff Education
Reviewed Dec. 2007 May 2009 June 2010 November 2011
PURPOSE: To provide guidelines for UWMF Dermatology Clinic regarding dressing change instructions
given to patients, post a dermatologic procedure.
POLICY: The clinical staff will utilize the following guidelines to instruct patients on the proper procedure
regarding dressing change(s) post a dermatologic procedure.
SUPPLIES: Provider’s order, Patient’s record, Patient Education Instructions
Dressing supplies (non-stick Telfa, soap and water, Band-Aid and Hypafix tape), Vaseline
1. Check provider’s order and clarify any inconsistencies.
2. Wash hands and gather equipment.
3. Introduce yourself, identify the patient and provide privacy.
4. Ensure that the patient is comfortable.
5. Verify if the patient is able to learn the procedure and report to the provider if patient is unable to follow
6. Determine if patient has allergies to any of the materials to be used.
7. Instruct patient and /or family regarding post procedure dressing(s).
Wash hands with soap and water before dressing change.
Gently remove old dressing and throw it away.
With a clean 4 x 4, gently clean wound with soap and water.
NOTE: Do not force crust or debris off.
Apply thin layer of Vaseline to wound with cotton swab or gauze..
NOTE: Use a clean swab or pad for each site.
Note the amount drainage (if any).
Recover with Band-Aid or non-stick pad and tape
When completed, wash hands well with soap and water
8. Instruct patient and /or family regarding post procedure information
Take pain relievers (prescribed or OTC) for potential mild discomfort
Resume activity as directed but rest (if uncomfortable)
Do not get dressing wet
Stitches will be taken out in 7-14 days.
9. Instruct patient and/or family to call the clinic for the following.
Fever: temperature of greater than 100 degrees F
Increase in pain, pressure or swelling near site
Increase in drainage or odor
Change in skin color or temperature near site
Decrease in movement or loss of feeling near site
Any symptoms concerning to patient
Bruising may occur any time during first 2 weeks (if it gets worst call)
If bleeding: apply pressure for 10 minutes (without lifting gauze).
If bleeding continues -
Apply pressure for another 10 minutes, if bleeding continues -
Call clinic (even after hours) An on-call provider will return call
10. When completed, wash hands.
11. Document in the patient’s record:
Follow-up care, patient questions or concerns
Future appointments (if needed).
WRITTEN BY: Ronnie Peterson, R.N., M.S., Clinical Staff Educator
CONTRIBUTORS: Jodie Cook, Manager Dermatology
Lisa Hilker, CMA, Department of Dermatology
REVIEWED: Lisa Hilker, CMA, Department of Dermatology, 2011
Kowalak, J. P. (Ed.). (2009). Lippincott’s nursing procedures (5th ed.). Ambler, PA: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.
Perry, A.G. & Potter, P.A. (2002). Clinical nursing skills & techniques. (5th ed.). St. Louis, MO: Mosby.
Perry, A.G. & Potter, P.A. (2009). Fundamentals of nursing. (7th ed.). Hall, A. & Stockert, P.A. (Eds.). St. Louis, MO: Mosby
Department of Dermatology Date
Medical Director Date