After elbow surgery we suture your wound, secure it with steri-strips, and cover it with a dry wound dressing (usually transparent with a white pad in the middle). An outer pressure dressing or bandage is applied over the wound dressing to reduce post-operative haematoma formation.
We will tell you when to remove the outer bandages.
The inner wound dressing should be kept clean and dry for two weeks. At two weeks we see you in clinic to remove the wound dressing and the steri-strips, and we either trim or remove your sutures. When the sutures are trimmed or removed there are tiny holes in the skin which take 24 hours to close.
In order to keep the wound dressing clean and dry until the follow-up appointment we don’t recommend showering until the day after your sutures are trimmed or removed. If you do want to shower, once the bandages are removed you can cling-film the elbow to ensure it is water tight and the dressings remain dry during showering.
Getting the wound wet or removing the dressing too soon without re-covering the wound can lead to wound infection.