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Recently I was helping care for a family member who was recovering from hip replacement surgery. When we changed the dressing, the tape peeled off the skin. To prevent this, I tried securing the dressing by covering it with self-adhesive plastic wrap instead of taping it. To my surprise, not only did the wrap keep the dressing in place while the patient was in bed, but also when he exercised and walked. It was easily removed without damaging the skin, and the incision healed rapidly without problems. Have I stumbled onto something here?-K.S., ALASKA.
We sent your letter to a wound care expert, who loved your ingenuity. She agrees that ordinary plastic wrap is a cost-effective way to hold a home health care patient's dressing in place. Because plastic wrap is occlusive and traps moisture, however, she cautions you not to use it on an infected wound.
Nursing2006 will seek professional advice on any reasonable question connected with nursing. Send queries to Advice Editor, Nursing2006, 323 Norristown Rd., Suite 200, Ambler, PA 19002-2758, or e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. Type "Advice" in the subject line.
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