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Early Postoperative Bathing

CARL J. HEIFETZ, M.D.
Arch Surg. 1960;81(6):955-956. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1960.01300060101019.
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The simplification of postoperative care continues to be a highly desirable goal of surgeons. Early restoration of the patient to his normal environment has been aided by the use of nonabsorbable suture materials for strong and early wound healing, by extremity exercises in bed, by early ambulation, by administration of full diets as soon as the gastrointestinal tract will receive them, by early continuation of convalescent care at home, by return to physical work as soon as the wound has adequate tensile strength, etc. One of the helpful simplifications has been the policy of leaving dressings off clean, wellcoaptated surgical wounds, or of removing them a day or two after surgery, as described by Heifetz and co-workers.1,2 Many St. Louis surgeons have with gratification adopted this procedure for abdominal and other wounds, and others elsewhere have similarly simplified the care of thoracic wounds, too.3-5

Heifetz, Lawrence, and Richards

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