Postoperative reviews are an integral part of good surgical care, so all patients can expect to be reviewed in the clinic. For simple, minor procedures this can be done only once, but in most cases more than one review will be required.
The first postoperative follow-up focuses on wound care and healing and is often carried out one week after surgery. The wound is cleaned, checked, and dressings reduced. For wounds on the face and neck, most sutures are removed at that point too. Wounds on the body and extremities are usually left intact for two weeks. The first follow-up is most commonly carried out by an experienced nurse in the hospital where your operation took place. In case of any unexpected problems, the surgeon is informed immediately.
How many will I need?
The number of follow-ups needed for each condition is not set in stone. Patients are generally reviewed for as long as there is a clinical need, or if the patient is concerned. Postoperative scars may change for up to 12 months, sometimes even longer. This is why the final outcomes of surgery are often not judged until several months have elapsed after the operation; and this is why you are expected to attend reviews.
How can I help with my recovery?
You need to be patient with your recovery and be prepared to look after scars for a few months after surgery. This usually involves plenty of moisturising, massaging, and passive stretching of tissues to overcome contractures, the inherent propensity of scar tissue to shrink. Often you will need guidance on this and Sonja, her team of nurses and hand therapist are always there to provide help.
How much will follow-ups cost?
Follow-ups are a vital part of your treatment and should be covered by your insurance policy. For self-paying patients, most follow-ups are included in the packaged price at a minimal rate regardless of the number of attendances within the first six months. We naturally trust your judgement in attending the clinic as and when required, in case of genuine concerns. In the event that we anticipate more than the usual number of reviews due to the complexity of particular medical problem, you will be advised on additional charges in advance of treatment.