ZocdocAnswersIs there a problem to get my pilonidal cyst wound wet in the shower?

Question

Is there a problem to get my pilonidal cyst wound wet in the shower?

I had it removed several months ago but I'm still healing. My school is currently on Thanksgiving break and I have to change the bandage myself (usually the medical center does it). Before I put a new bandage on should I take a shower? If so, should i avoid getting anything in it other then water?I have not been able to clean the wound since the surgery because there has been a bandage on it. Thank you for your help.

Answer

Pilonidal cysts are not uncommon at a wide range of ages though most often are seen in younger individuals. Each individual is different and has different risks for wound infection based on past medical history, medications, and environment. If you are immunosuppressed due to medications or immunocompromised secondary to certain infections or medical conditions, you will be at higher risk for a wound infection. I recommend that you consult with the physician who removed your pilonidal cyst. Closed wounds will typically epithelialize after 48 hours, at which point in time the waterproof dressing that was placed on the wound can be removed and water can run down over the wound. Open wounds can take much longer to heal and epithelialize, especially if they are large. In these cases, the wounds can be managed with a wick, to prevent the skin from closing over the wound and creating a potential space that can develop into an abscess. Alternatively, the wound can be managed with wet to dry dressings to help the tissue granulate, or heal, from the bottom up. Other wounds can be managed by a vac dressing to help remove excess fluid. Small wounds may just be managed with a dry sterile dressing. It is best to consult with the physician who removed your pilonidal cyst as they will know best the procedure, your past medical history and your risk factors. You should schedule an appointment with your physician for further evaluation of your wound healing. They would be best equipped to guide you in your decision on whether to get your wound wet.

This answer is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice.

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