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Post-Op Instructions

The journey AFTER your operation is just as important as the journey before . You will be given clear instructions from Mr Banwell and his team regarding activities in the post-operative phase and what you can do and cannot do. You should take things easy and rest up. It is normal to feel tired and for some bigger operations especially, this may last some weeks. Nethertheless, the body has amazing recovery powers though so eat well, drink plenty of water and use the opportunity to sleep.

Your wound will usually be dressed with brown micropore tape. This is relatively inconspicuous. You should leave the dressing intact and should not touch it. Mr Banwell or one of the nursing staff will give instructions regarding care of your wound and what you can or cannot do. Usually in the case of reconstructive AND cosmetic surgery, you will be given instructions to shower normally the day after you leave hospital. Showering is fine but soaking in the bath is not permitted at this stage. Patting the tape dry after showering and then using a hairdryer on a warm setting is standard practice. Expect to be seen at 1 week following your surgery by the nurses and then at 2 weeks by Mr Banwell.

Tape is usually removed at 1 week for facial lesions but in all other cases tape should remain in place for two weeks for support and to allow the suture line to heal. At this stage tape is removed, the wound is assessed and then reaped for a further week.

Your dressing is shower-proof, so you can shower normally following your operation. However, you should avoid soaking the dressing in a bath.

After washing/showering you should pat the dressing dry with a clean towel and then use a hair-dryer on a warm (NOT hot!!!) setting to dry the area fully. It is vital that the tape is fully dried. This method is tried and tested and the surgical tape will usually stay on for several weeks if looked after properly.

If tape is used on the face then sutures are removed at 1 week and tape reapplied for a further week. All cosmetic patients have their tape removed at 2 weeks and then reapplied for a further week.

Stitches on the face are usually left in for 1-week. Elsewhere on the body (back, chest, breasts and limbs] they stay in for longer, but often dissolvable stitches are used which do not need to be removed.

If your wound has been closed with dissolvable stitches only, you can leave the tape on the wound until it starts to come off by itself. This will usually be around 2-weeks. In most cases Mr Banwell will ask you to return to the clinic for a ‘wound check’ by the nursing staff to ensure all is progressing in the right direction. He will usually review you the following week (ie. week 2 post procedure) although if it is a straightforward minor procedure this appointment is usually 1 month after surgery when results will be discussed.

You should wait until several days after the stitches are taken out before applying make-up directly on the wound. This is to ensure that the wound is completely sealed which will prevent the make-up from irritating the wound. Please see the guidance about massaging your wound below – your moisturiser should be applied BEFORE any make-up!

There are several important signs that may suggest problems with your wound.
These include:

Increasing pain at the wound site
Redness developing around the wound
Persistent discharge from the wound (this does not include minor bleeding that virtually always occurs a few hours after your operation)
Generally feeling of being unwell
A rising temperature
Nausea and vomiting
Should you notice any of these symptoms you should get back in contact with the hospital where you had your operation for an urgent review.

The best place to call in an emergency is the hospital at which your operation was performed. Please phone outpatients department directly for assistance or ask to speak to the Resident Medical Officer (RMO) if after hours. Alternatively, you can also telephone Mr Banwell’s team (between 9am and 5pm) on 01342 330302

To improve the appearance of your scar re-taping and subsequent massaging is very important

  • About a week following the removal of your stitches you should start to massage your scar. Mr Banwell recommends vitamin E cream to help with this massage – this will also help moisturise the scar at the same time. There is no known additional benefit of bio-oil.
  • The evidence for using silicone-based tapes or creams/gels on the scar is limited but some people believe that this may also help the scar to become softer and flatter sooner than it would otherwise. They may also prevent the scar from becoming hypertrophic (red and lumpy). Mr Banwell’s particular favourite scar cream is Codage Skin Recovery Serum

It is important to take things easy after your operation. Refrain from bending or lifting (this raise your blood pressure and can lead to further bleeding). If you have had an operation on your face it is a good idea to sleep on some pillows so you do not lay flat. Vigorous exercise should be avoided for at least two weeks (even for minor procedures) and longer if you have had a bigger operation. Mr Banwell or his team will explain in more detail should you have any specific questions.

Warning: smoking significantly increases the risk of complications such as bleeding, infection and delayed healing and may preclude the surgery from taking place. This includes the use of vaping with nicotine too.

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The Next Step?

During the time I have been in the care of Paul and the team I have been treated extremely well and very professionally, I could not have asked for better care. Paul was extremely caring and considerate throughout this time and has put me at ease during any procedures that I have had carried out. I trust his judgement completely and recommended Paul to a close family member who had a similar problem.


Frances W.

I thought the team were helpful and efficient because they helped me to schedule my appointments around my working hours. They were always at hand to discuss any questions I had with a friendly and professional manor. Mr Banwell was amazing. He was totally honest and helped me decide which type of breast implant and procedure to have. We talked through my torrent of questions and concerns with ease. He asked me how I wanted my breast to look and I said I wanted them as natural as possible and that is exactly what I got. My new breasts have certainly made me feel more confident with ym body. I previously felt inadequate in the breast area and now I can?t stop smiling! I am so pleased with the outcome I only wish I?d done it sooner. The operation certainly wasn?t as scary as I thought it would be and I was looked after with the utmost care.


Samantha S.

I was kept well informed and thought it was excellent to see Mr Banwell before surgery, during recovery and afterwards to hear all went well. It was something that caused me discomfort and sensitivity and now I feel much happier not only with the appearance but more importantly it is much more comfortable for me. I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend Mr Banwell to my friends, he is truly professional yet has a nice relaxed manner which puts you at ease.


Helen S.

I can honestly say that having my abdominoplasty with Mr Paul Banwell was a truly incredible experience. All the staff were very friendly and efficient.  The care I received with him was expert, professional and totally honest and I found him to be extremely kind and reassuring. Every step of my procedure was explained clearly and in detail.  The nursing care was second to none and the team looked after me expertly and with dignity.  I have an amazing flat abdomen and my clothes look and feel so much better than before my surgery. My linear scar is flat and neat. Everyone comments on how lovely I look and I have found so much more confidence in myself.  I can highly recommend Paul and his team! With grateful thanks to you all!


Alison C.

From the welcome I got on my first visit to post-op consultations, the team were very friendly. Mr Banwell is undoubtedly the most professional and caring surgeon I could wish for. I have felt completely confident in his expertise, and am thrilled with the results. I would not hesitate – and indeed have – to recommend him to all my friends.


H F.

The team at the McIndoe Surgical Centre who looked after me were very friendly and helpful. They calmed me down and put to rest any last minute concerns. I love the outcome of the surgery and would definitely recommend Mr Banwell to other people.


Francesca L.

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The Banwell Clinic

The Banwell Clinic is recognised as a boutique cosmetic clinic specialising in all aspects of skin health and our philosophy is to help Protect, Restore & Rejuvenate your face and body.  Our extensive portfolio of treatments include injectables, thread lifts, plasma shower, luxurious signature facials, acne treatments, microdermabrasion, hair removal and cellulite treatments, all carried out in a friendly, warm environment by an expert team.

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