Amputations Post Op Instructions

Having an amputation can be a very  stressful time for any patient and making it difficult to understand all of you post operative instructions.  The following instructions will help make this process easier for you as well as reduce any concerns you may have.

Walking or Weight Bearing

After your amputation, a period of rest is required to allow the incision to completely heal before it is ready to undergo the stress from bearing weight.  Even if you did not have an incision you will still have to allow the wound to heal.  This is typically 4 weeks.  Every amputation is different and some will take even longer.  Remember, you most likely had the amputation because you have some predisposed condition that has compromised your body’s ability to heal.  As a result of this, you will require a longer than average time to heal after your amputation.  If you do not rest the foot your incision or wound can become disrupted which can lead to other problems such as infection or even further amputations.

Bandages

Your bandages were placed on in the operating room or may have been changed in the hospital before being discharged.  DO NOT REMOVE your bandages after you have been discharged home.  If you had home nursing ordered, you may allow them to change them if they have orders from Dr. Campitelli.  Changing your bandages and applying any type of ointments can risk infection and further complications.

Bleeding

If you see bleeding through your bandages, this is more than likely normal and nothing to be alarmed about.  If the bleeding is dripping from the bandages and not stopping, please call the office and have Dr. Campitelli paged.

Infection

Infection can by common after any amputation especially if your initially surgery was the result of an infection.  If you are experiencing any foul odor or drainage from you bandages this could be the result of further infection and requires notifying Dr. Campitelli.  If you are diabetic and your blood sugars are running higher than normal or you feel flu like symptoms, this can be a result of infection and is an emergency.  If this occurs, contact Dr. Campitelli immediately or go to the nearest emergency room.

Ice

DO NOT APPLY ICE to your foot after an amputation.  While it is very common to use ice after surgery to reduce swelling, this is not true for amputations.  Ice could reduce blood flow to the area and disrupt the healing process.

ACE bandages

If you were discharged home with an ACE bandage in place, please do not reapply the ACE bandage or tighten it.  This can cut off the circulation to your foot.  If you feel your ACE bandage is too tight, you may remove it and keep the gauze in place that is under it.

Follow up appointments

After being discharged from the hospital, you should have had a follow up appointment made with Dr. Campitelli most likely at a wound center.   If you did not receive an appointment, please call the office at 330-926-3231 and schedule to be seen within 7 days of your surgery.

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