1539 Atwood Ave Suite 301
Johnston, RI 02919
(401) 490-4515
fax (401) 490-4516

Shave Biopsy:

Your test results will be available in 1-2 weeks. If you do not receive a phone call from us in two weeks, please call the office.

Leave the bandage on for 24 hours and keep the area covered and moist.

If you experience any discomfort, take 2 Tylenol tablets every 4 to 6 hours.  We recommend that you avoid Aspirin, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory agents such as Motrin or Advil, and avoid alcohol, as these increase the likelihood that you will bleed.

Clean the biopsy site once a day:

  1. Use soap and water to gently cleanse the area and pat dry.
  2. Apply Aquaphor or Vaseline ointment (both can be purchased over the counter) to the biopsy site with a Q-tip.
  3. Cover the site with a Band-Aid or Telfa pad or leave open with the ointment on the wound (especially for facial lesions or hair bearing areas.)
  4. Do not allow the biopsy site to dry out or form a scab, as this will slow the healing process.  If necessary, re-cleanse and reapply ointment to maintain moisture of the wound.
  5. When the surface of the skin has healed (approximately 4-10 days) wound care may be discontinued. 

It is normal for healing wounds to feel slightly tender to the touch and look pink around the edges.  However, if after a few days it becomes increasingly red, swollen, painful or develops a discharge, please contact the office. 

Sutured Wounds:

The importance of post-operative care to your surgical site cannot be over stressed.  The care you take of yourself and your surgical wound is extremely important to the success of the procedure, your recovery, and wellbeing.

Special Instructions:

  • The dressing should remain in place for 24 hrs- 72 hrs.  If the dressing comes loose before then, re-tape it carefully.
  • You may shower after 24 hrs - 72 hrs.  Gentle running water and pat dry is OK.
  • You may notice a small amount of blood on the edges of the dressing the first day (THIS IS NORMAL).
  • If you have Steri-strips tape (skin colored tape) on the suture line; please leave the tape alone.  It will come off on its own or until we remove it during your suture removal visit.
  • If you DO NOT have Steri-strip tape, after shower or gentle wash, apply a thin layer of Aquaphor or Vaseline (all of which can be purchased over the counter) over the wound.  Cover the wound with Telfa (non-stick) dressing, gauze pad, and a piece of paper tape (a Band-Aid is OK).
  • If Epifix was applied please leave dressing undisturbed.
  • If your surgery was on the face or scalp, keep your head elevated for 48 hours.
  • If your wound becomes increasingly inflamed, warm, drains a pus-like substance, or if you develop fever or chills, please contact the office immediately.
  • If you have stopped your Aspirin one week prior to surgery, you can resume taking the medication three days after surgery. 
  • If your doctor asks you to take oral antibiotics, please follow the instructions that your doctor gave to you.

There are several things that could happen following surgery

BLEEDING: Bleeding can occur following surgery.  To reduce the possibility of bleeding, the following instructions are given:

  • Limit activities for 24-48 hours.
  • Keep the operative site elevated (if appropriate)
  • If surgery was on the face, head or neck: Avoid stooping or bending, Avoid straining to have a bowel movement & sleep with your head and shoulders elevated on extra pillows.

Should bleeding occur, apply firm constant pressure on the bandage for 20 minutes! In most cases, that will stop minor bleeding.

SWELLING: Swelling occurs because surgery has caused a wound and your body reacts to that injury.  To reduce the amount of swelling that may occur:

  • Apply an ice pack for 20 minutes each hour during waking hours.  If you do not have an ice pack, a “baggy” filled with cracked ice and wrapped in a thin towel is OK.
  • Keep your bandage dry.

PAIN: Pain, postoperatively, is generally slight.  In nearly all cases, Extra Strength Tylenol will relieve any pain you may experience. 

INFECTION: Infection seldom occurs when the wound care instructions have been carefully follows. 

Signs of infection include: Increased pain, swelling, redness or yellowish drainage several days after surgery

There will be a scar and redness in the scar after surgery.  This will decrease as healing progresses but redness should be expected as long as six months.  Everyone heals differently and the final scar appearance will vary depending on the individual’s ability to heal.  In other words, some scars heal and can hardly be seen while others become thick and/or tender.  Due to the unpredictability in wound healing, the final appearance cannot be preoperatively ascertained. 

Notify the office immediately should bleeding persist or signs of infection occur.    During clinic hours: (401) 490-4515    After hours: (401) 357-4737

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Coastal Dermatology & Cosmetic Center