Post Operative Instructions -- Skin Cancer Surgery
  1. Diet:  In the immediate post-operative recovery period, a liquid diet should be maintained.  You may feel temporarily drowsy and nauseated from the anesthesia.  Medication is available for nausea.  When liquids are tolerated satisfactorily, the diet may be advanced to a regular diet. 
  2. Activity:   Avoid vigorous physical activity for the first three or four days after surgery.  It is wise to wait until the sutures are removed if possible.
  3. Care and cleaning the wound:  Please avoid getting your incision wet for the first 24 to 36 hours or as otherwise directed by your physician.  Be gentle with the wound.  Apply the antibiotic ointment immediately after showering or bathing.  Your physician will discuss the type of antibiotic ointment to be used.
  4. Medications:  Usually Tylenol or Motrin is adequate for pain control.  If this does not control the pain, please call your physician.  Your physician may prescribe medications.  Please use them as directed.  In most cases you can resume your pre-operative medications once you tolerate a meal.  It is recommended to wait at least two hours after your first post-operative meal before resuming your pre-operative medications (in case there is any vomiting).  Please ask your physician if there are any special restrictions on your normal medications.
  5. Bleeding:  Some bleeding is to be expected during the first 24 to 36 hours after the surgery, brisk bleeding or continued bleeding is unusual and should be reported to your physician.
  6. Infection:  Although rare, it can happen.  Oral antibiotics are not given routinely after removal of a skin cancer.  Look for increase redness, swelling or weeping form the wound.  If any of these signs are noted, please call your physician.
  7. Follow-up:  You will be asked to make a post-operative appointment for suture removal, usually 5 to 7 days after surgery.
  8. If you have further questions, please contact us.