Q. I am suggested not to have dressing after armpit surgery. Will it lead to infection?

Answered by
Dr. Aditi Gupta Jha
and medically reviewed by Dr.Nithila A
This is a premium question & answer published on Oct 03, 2019

Hello doctor,

Due to accident, I have an injury in my arm, and stone has entered in armpit now the stone is taken out, and the doctor has recommended me not to have dressing. If I will not having dressing, then I could lead to infection. Can you please help me what I should do now?

Dr. Aditi Gupta Jha

General Medicine Internal Medicine


Welcome to icliniq.com.

I have seen the picture you have attached (attachment removed to protect patient identity), and it looks like it is still a raw wound, that recently happened and has not got time to heal. It is best to leave such injuries over the skin open with an ointment applied over it such as Soframycin (Framycetin) or Bactroban (Mupirocin) so that you avoid infection while you are exposed to the outside environment.

But while you are at home, wash your arm and then clean using Dettol or any antiseptic over the area and keep it dry uncovered. The reason we advise to leave it uncovered is that it will expose the epidermis and the body will realise it needs to heal the wound if the skin is torn. But if you apply a packing over it, the antibiotic in the dressing keeps the body's natural healing away and makes it slower. I understand it is challenging to keep it exposed and uncomfortable, but it is best for quicker healing.

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