Post-Operative Foot & Ankle Wound Care Guidelines

This booklet is designed to guide you through the care of your foot and ankle wound after surgery. Following these guidelines will help ensure a smooth and effective healing process.

Immediate Post-Operative Care

Splint Care: Keep the splint on until your first post-operative appointment. Avoid getting it wet. If it becomes wet, contact our office immediately.

Stitches and Staple Care

SFirst 2 Weeks: Stitches or staples will be removed during your first post-op appointment, usually around 2 weeks after surgery.

Showering and Bathing

  • Initial Period: Take sponge baths until your first post-operative visit. Do not submerge your wound in water.
  • After Stitches Removal: Showering is allowed, but avoid scrubbing the incision. Gently pat the area dry after washing with warm water.
  • Bathing Precautions: Avoid baths, swimming pools, lakes, or oceans for at least 3 weeks post-surgery or until given specific permission.

Managing Your Bandage

  • Incision Care: Keep any bandage over your incision clean and dry, following your doctor’s instructions.
  • Ape Strips: If tape strips are used, leave them on for a week or until they fall off, keeping the area dry.

Splint and Cast Guidelines

  • General Care: Keep your splint or cast dry and refrain from inserting anything between it and your skin.
  • Dressing Layers: Understand the three layers of your post-operative dressing for proper care.
  • Removable Boot: Once placed in a boot, you can remove it for showers, but avoid submerging the wound.

Special Considerations

  • DuraPrep Stains: Yellow discoloration from DuraPrep can be cleaned with rubbing alcohol the day after surgery.
  • Steri-Strips: Leave Steri-Strips in place until sutures are removed, typically 10-12 days post-surgery.