Welcome to our Patient Education page!

Our team of specialists and staff believe that informed patients are better equipped to make decisions regarding their health and well being. For your personal use, we have created an extensive patient library covering an array of educational topics, which can be found on the side of each page. Browse through these diagnoses and treatments to learn more about topics of interest to you. Or, for a more comprehensive search of our entire Web site, enter your term(s) in the search bar provided below. For even more information, visit our Health Education Library here

As always, you can contact our office to answer any questions or concerns.

 

Wound Care after skin surgery:

  • During the first 1-2 days after your surgery, you may see a small amount of blood on the bandage. This is normal.
  • If the bandage becomes soaked with bright red blood, remove the dressing and apply firm direct pressure on the area for 15 minutes without "peeking." After 15 minutes, look to see if the bleeding has stopped. If it has not, repeat the firm, direct pressure again for 15 minutes. If the bleeding still has not stopped, please call the office. If the office is closed, call Dr. Simon's cell phone number, 734-834-2543. If the bleeding has stopped, apply a new dressing to the area and come in to the office for a bandage change as scheduled, two days after your surgery.
  • If a large, purple, swollen area is noted under or around the stitches, please call the office right away. This may be a collection of blood or fliud that needs to be drained.

    General instructions for the weeks following the surgery:

  • For the first 1-2 days after surgery, apply an ice bag to the surgery site for 20 minutes per hour, every hour you are awake. Do NOT allow the ice to leak onto the bandage and get the bandage wet.
  • If your surgery was on the head, for the first 1-2 days sleep with your head elevated 30 degrees to decrease the swelling to the area.
  • Take Tylenol or the prescribed pain medication as directed for pain. Do not start taking aspirin or ibuprofen-containing medicines until 3-4 days after surgery.
  • Return to Mooresville Dermatology Center 48 hours after your surgery for your FIRST bandage change
  • After your first bandage change, you may wash the wound area gently once a day, with a piece of gauze soaked in plain water or "normal saline" solution. Do not scrub the area or purposefully soak the area with water. Use the gauze to gently remove any crusted blood.
  • Apply a thin coating of vasoline or prescribed (NOT over-the-counter) antibiotic ointment, and apply a fresh bandage with gauze and paper-tape (available at the drug store)
  • Most wounds can be left uncovered after the first week, but if they are on an area of the body where they are being rubbed by clothing, please keep them covered until the sutures are removed.
  • Take the full course of any antibiotics you were given.
  • Return to clinic for suture removal on the date instructed by Dr. Simon unless you were told that all of your stitches are dissolvable.
  • Call Mooresville Dermatology Center if the treated area becomes red, swollen, warm to the touch, painful, or has increased drainage more than 3 or 4 days after the procedure. These are signs of infection and may require antibiotics for resolution. Our number is 704-235-1827.

Wound Care after treatment with Liquid Nitrogen Therapy (Cryotherapy)

  • You will feel a stinging or burning sensation during the treatment. This usually lasts for about 5 minutes, and then goes away. Occasionally, a throbbing sensation may be felt for one or two hours after freezing, most commonly on fingers, toes, eyelids, and lips.
  • You will notice redness and swelling within minutes after treatment.
  • Clean the treated areas like you would normal skin, with mild soap and water daily. Do not rub or scrub the areas. You do not need to keep the treated areas covered with a bandaid.
  • You may notice that a blister forms, usually 1-2 days after the freezing. The blister may be filled with a clear fluid or with blood, which will give it a blue or violet color. The blister will flatten by itself in 1-2 weeks.
  • If a blister becomes painful, a needle that has been sterilized with rubbing alcohol may be used to puncture the top. Press gently on the top of the blister to remove the fluid. Leave the top of the blister intact and it will act as a natural bandaid. Clean the area daily with mild soap and water.
  • If a blister does not form, it does not mean that the freezing did not work.
  • - Possible side effects from liquid nitrogen therapy include a lighter or darker color of the skin that was treated. This color change within the skin may, or may not, decrease over the months following treatment.
  • Warts treated with liquid nitrogen therapy will often need repeated treatments to be completely removed. This usually requires a visit every two or three weeks.
  • Call Mooresville Dermatology Center if the treated area becomes red, swollen, warm to the touch, painful, or has increased drainage more than 3 or 4 days after freezing. These are signs of infection and may require antibiotics for resolution.
  • If you feel you have an emergency, please call us at 704-235-1827

Wound Care Following a Shave or Punch Biopsy

To care for your biopsy site, please follow these directions:

  • Remove your dressing or bandage 24 hours after the biopsy.
  • Clean the area just as you would normal skin with mild unscented Dove soap and water.
  • Apply either a small amount of prescribed antibiotic ointment or plain Vaseline. Do not apply over-the-counter antibiotic ointments, as these often cause allergic rashes and may cause the wound to appear infected when it is not. A rash will also slow the healing process.
  • - Re-cover the biopsy site with a bandaid or bandage, changed daily after washing and applying a new coat of ointment. If you begin to develop a "bandaid rash," use a plain piece of gauze and "paper tape" which is available at the drug store.
  • If you have sutures for your biopsy, avoid activities such as swimming or bathing that totally submerge the wound. Running water, such as during a shower, is ok.
  • If you had a shave biopsy, these sites may take 4-8 weeks to heal, especially if a deep shave was performed, and/or the wound is on your back or legs. Continue to wash and apply a fresh coat of vasoline until it is fully healed.
  • Your pathology report may take 10-14 days to be processed. We will notify you of the results of your biopsy by phone.
  • If you had sutures placed for your biopsy, please return for their removal at the time instructed by Dr. Simon
  • Call Mooresville Dermatology Center if the treated area becomes red, swollen, warm to the touch, painful, or has increased drainage more than 3 or 4 days after the procedure. These are signs of infection and may require antibiotics for resolution.
  • If you feel you have an emergency, please call us at 704-235-1827

 

 



Warts are small, harmless growths that appear most frequently on the hands and feet. Sometimes they look flat and smooth, other times they have a dome-shaped or cauliflower-like appearance. Warts can be surrounded by skin that is either lighter or darker. Warts are caused by different forms of Human Papilloma Virus (HPV). They occur in people of all ages and can spread from person-to-person and from one part of the body to another. Warts are benign (noncancerous) and generally painless. They may disappear without any treatment. However, in most cases eliminating warts takes time.

The location of a wart often characterizes its type:

Common warts can appear anywhere on the body, although they most often appear on the back of fingers, toes and knees. These skin-colored, dome-shaped lesions usually grow where the skin has been broken, such as a scratch or bug bite. They can range in size from a pinhead to 10mm and may appear singly or in multiples.

Filiform warts look like a long, narrow, flesh-colored stalk that appears singly or in multiples around the eyelids, face, neck or lips. They are sometimes called facial warts. They may cause itching or bleeding, but are easy to treat with over-the-counter medications.

Flat (plane) warts appear on the face and forehead. They are flesh-colored or white, with a slightly raised, flat surface and they usually appear in multiples. Flat warts are more common among children and teens than adults.

Genital warts appear around the genital and pubic areas. It is also possible to get genital warts inside the vagina and anal canal or in the mouth (known as oral warts). The lesions start small and soft but can become quite large. They often grow in clusters. They are both sexually transmitted and highly contagious. In fact, it is recommended you generally avoid sex with anyone who has a visible genital wart. Genital warts should always be treated by a physician.

Plantar warts appear on the soles of the feet and can be painful since they are on weight-bearing surfaces. They have a rough, cauliflower-like appearance and may have a small black speck in them. They often appear in multiples and may combine into a larger wart called a mosaic wart. Plantar warts can spread rapidly.

Subungual and periungual warts appear as rough growths around the fingernails and/or toenails. They start as nearly undetectable, pin-sized lesions and grow to pea-sized with rough, irregular bumps with uneven borders. Subungual and periungual warts can impede healthy nail growth. Because of their location, they are difficult to treat and generally require medical attention.

Most warts respond to over-the-counter treatments, including:

  • Cryotherapy, which freezes off the wart using liquid nitrogen or nitrous oxide.
  • Electrosurgery, which sends an electric current through the wart to kill the tissue.
  • Laser surgery, which essentially heat up the wart until the tissue dies and the wart eventually falls off.
  • Nonprescription freezing products (dimethyl ether), aerosol sprays that freeze the warts and cause them to die off.
  • Salicylic acid preparations, which dissolve the protein (keratin) that makes up the wart and the thick layer of skin that covers it. It comes in gels, pads, drops and plasters and takes 4 to 6 weeks to eradicate the warts.

If self-treatments don't work after a period of about 4 to 12 weeks, contact our dermatologist. We'll assess your warts and recommend the best option.

Always contact the dermatologist if a wart is causing pain, changes in color or appearance and for all genital warts.