Dressing Changes

Sometimes your doctor will order dressing changes that need to be performed in the home setting. Taking into consideration individualized needs it may be necessary to have professional assistance if warranted. Changing your wound dressings properly will help your wound heal faster and help prevent infections. You should follow the instructions provided by your nurse or doctor. Tips to help you change your dressings safely are described below.


Supplies needed

  • Antibacterial soap, surface wipe or a household spray that kills germs

  • Paper towel used only for changing wound dressings. Store in a zip lock bag

  • Soap and water

  • Normal saline, bottled water or spray surfactant

  • New wound dressings

  • Plastic bag for garbage

Safe place to change dressings

  • Use a hard surface that is away from: Where you prepare food, Small children or pets, Open windows or doors.

Preparing to change dressings

  • Wipe the surface with antibacterial cleaner.

  • Cover surface with clean paper towel.

  • Wash hands with soap and water, rubbing all sides and between fingers.

  • Pat hands dry with clean towel or paper towel.

  • Place supplies needed to change dressing on paper towel.

Removing old dressing

  • Press one hand on skin near wound.

  • With the other hand, gently peel dressing across the skin, not straight up.

  • Put dressing in plastic bag.

  • Wash hands with soap and water.

Cleaning the wound

  • Rinse wound with saline, bottled water or spray surfactant.

  • Carefully remove any bits of dead skin, tissue or drainage.

  • Gently pat dry around the edges of the wound.

New dressing

  • Follow your doctor’s orders to complete the dressing change; if there is any doubt communicate with your doctor or nurse to clarify.

After changing the dressing

  • Put all soiled items in the plastic bag.

  • Throw the plastic bag into the trash right away.

  • Wash your hands with soap and water.

  • Wipe the surface with antibacterial cleaner.

If you have any questions or notice signs of infection, contact your doctor right away.

Dr. Stephen Moore and Dr. Gkotsoulias are podiatrists serving

The Woodlands, Kingwood, Spring, and Tomball areas.