What are the types of postoperative dressings in lower-extremity amputations?

Updated: Apr 29, 2021
  • Author: Janos P Ertl, MD; Chief Editor: Vinod K Panchbhavi, MD, FACS, FAOA, FABOS, FAAOS  more...
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Answer

Postoperative dressings and treatments vary, each with advantages and disadvantages. There are four generic types of postoperative dressings available, as follows:

  • Soft dressings - These dressings do not control postoperative edema
  • Soft dressings with pressure wrap - These dressings require an even distribution of pressure to avoid possible limb strangulation
  • Semirigid dressings - These include plaster splints and Unna Paste Bandages held in place with a stockinette; they have the same advantages that rigid dressings do, except that no immediate postoperative prosthesis can be used
  • Rigid dressings - Many such dressings are commercially available, and intraoperative prosthetic assistance may be required; potential advantages include residual extremity maturation, decreased edema, less pain, wound protection, and early mobilization in combination with an immediate postoperative prosthesis; disadvantages include poor access to the wound and excessive pressure, leading to wound necrosis

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