Dressings off after first lap... now what?

Hi Ladies, my first lap was last Monday, I was given waterproof dressings which I was told to put on Weds and remove today. I have got them off after a lot of tears, they were REALLY stuck. I gave the wounds a little wash with warm water, but now what? They hurt and feel very exposed without dressing, do I just wash normally, should I bathe them? I wasn't given any instructions, I have put a call into the hospital but just wondered what did you do ?

17 Replies

  • I wasn't told what to do with mine either, this was back in June. But I was given dressings and told to keep them covered for a week and a bit. Which I'm not sure is correct.

    They are more likely to dissolve with water reaching them. I didn't put anything on them and when I was able to shower, any soap and water that went on them was when I was washing my upper body. And I would pat them dry.

    Once the skin is healed from the outside you can use something on them. I used bio-oil.

    If you are worried then maybe phone up and ask your nurse.

  • Thank you, I have followed what they said to the letter by changing the original dressing to the waterproof one last weds so I could shower, and taken them off today. The stitches are still there not disolved and now pulling like crazy 😥 I have put a call into the hospital, waiting a call back x

  • Don't want to frighten you but mine took about 3 weeks to "dissolve" they stopped hurting after a week or 2. And by the 3rd week I gently pulled one and it just fell out. It seemed like they had dissolved on the inside but I must have protected them too much!

    I don't remember mine pulling but then I did have dressings in them for a long time and the pressure/support from the dressings helped.

  • Thank you for the reply, I am a week and a half in so half way through hopefully! I had quite alot removed and keep feeling pulling and drawing pain on the inside too. It's horrid this recovery 😥 x

  • Internal healing takes a bit of time. But try to take it easy if work/home life allows.

    I imagine that it is just period pain and it will pass. X

  • Thank you, luckily I've been signed off work for 3 weeks, so trying to take it very easy x

  • Hi Adele

    I am nearly 3 weeks post op now and I still feel a bit sore so don't worry too much. I kept my dressings completely dry for the first 10 days by having really shallow baths and using a rung out flannel to wash my front half lol. Then I took everything off and have been bathing normally. My incisions seem to have healed really well but I am getting quite a bit of internal pain. Feels like period pain but not as intense.

    Hope you feel better soon.

    Kirsty x

  • Thank you Kirsty, it's nice to know it's not just me. I wake up every day thinking I will feel better and every day I don't. I need to be patient but it's not my strong point ! x

  • Hi, I have done things quite similar to Kirstyjane. My lap will have been 3 weeks ago tomorrow and I have kept my wounds totally try the whole time. From the day after lap I started with shallow baths and am still continuing now. I run a bath so the water sits just under the lowest wound. I then carefully wrap a towel around my waist, lean over bath and wash top half, thoroughly dry then sit in the bath to do bottom half. Once out I carefully wipe all areas between the wounds. I also lean over bath to wash my hair separately. It sounds very long winded but I have just been extra careful as I am usually a really slow healer and I didn't want to take any chances.

    I took my first lot of dressings off after 4 days, put some fresh ones on for a further 4 days and have since left them off. I wore soft tops and pants so it doesn't rub too much.

    I am actually really pleased with how I have healed, the stitches finally came off yesterday and all of the top yucky brown scabs have fallen off and I am left with just dark red flat marks. I can still feel pulling on inside but outside is looking much better. There is still some yellow bruising around area. Just to make it even more more complicated I haven't used any of the normal sponges or bath puffs I would normally incase they harbour bacteria. I have used a few baby wipes with baby bath so I could have fresh ones every day. Now it's nice and healed from the outside I will be looking forward to a deeper soak in the bath!

    They do feel exposed for a couple of days but you soon get used to it. Hope you continue to heal well.


  • Thank you for the reply, think the exposed feeling made me panic a bit ! Hospital have called back and said to leave off the dressings now and can shower as normal but not soak in Bath until stitches have gone. They feel so weird just sticking out! xx

  • Glad you heard back from hospital. It does feel odd to start with, also my whole insides feel like they have been re arranged!

    I am starting to feel like a bit like human being again now which is nice,

    Take care,


  • I also cried my eyes out when I took my dressings off for the first time but I had two more lots of dressings to replace them with. I left each set on for two days so only had a week with dressings before I left the incisions to the 'elements'. It was a bit nerve wracking to have them exposed but I didn't catch them or anything. To be honest, I haven't bathed them particularly, just having showers as normal and a couple of baths to help dissolve the stitches. I'm two weeks and a day post lap and the belly button stitches finally started dissolving yesterday but the other two are still intact x

  • Thank you hun, my belly button ones seem to have disolved already. But both side ones are sticking out, thank goodness for giant Primark knickers !! 😂

  • Ha ha, I know the feeling! My biggest, ugliest 'period' knickers are all I've worn! Comfort over style at the moment! X

  • I ended up cleaning mine with salt water on a cotton bud, it stung so much but when I seen the dr after thinking they were infected this is what he said to do!

    I was the same not given any instructions.

    The salt water did the trick though and I'm now just over two weeks post op and they are all nearly dissolved and healing nicely X

  • My hubby suggested salt water last night I hadn't really thought about it. Will give it a go, thank you x

  • No problem! It really improved mine, the sting is worth it.

    Good luck! X

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