Discharge Instructions: Caring for Your Xeroform Dressing

Discharge Instructions: Caring for Your Xeroform Dressing

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Discharge Instructions: Caring for Your Xeroform Dressing

You are going home with a Xeroform dressing in place. Xeroform is a yellow dressing that covers your skin graft. It was placed during surgery and will stay in place until your wound is healed. You can perform most of your normal activities with the dressing in place. Here's what you need to know about home care.


What to Expect

  • For the first few days after your surgery, fluid from your wound will drain through the Xeroform. This is normal. You can use a heat lamp or hair dryer to dry the Xeroform.

  • The donor site will be painful until it is dry. Take pain medication as directed by your doctor.

  • As your skin graft heals, the Xeroform will look crusty. It may itch.

  • About 7 to 14 days after the dressing was placed, it will begin to lift off at the edges.

  • Once the Xeroform is removed, the wound will be pink or dark red with white flaky areas. Don't be alarmed. The pink color will go away in time.

Wound Care

  • Bathe or shower daily.

    • Use a separate washcloth to gently wash the Xeroform. Don’t scrub it.

    • Don’t keep the Xeroform under water for more than 10 minutes.

    • Rinse well.

    • Dry yourself and pat the Xeroform dry with a separate towel. Use a hair dryer set on cool to dry the Xeroform if you wish.

  • Check the wound for signs of infection such as redness, swelling, drainage, or a bad smell.

  • As the Xeroform begins to lift up and your wound starts to heal, trim off the loose edges of the dressing. Use clean scissors that you have wiped off with an alcohol swab. Stop trimming if it is painful or if it causes bleeding.

  • Apply lotion or moisturizing cream to the areas where you have trimmed off the Xeroform.

  • Don't cover the Xeroform with other dressings. You don’t have to worry that it will fall off.


Make a follow-up appointment as directed by our staff.


When to Call Your Doctor

Call your doctor right away if you have any of the following:

  • Increased redness, swelling, or warmth in the skin around the wound

  • Fluid building up under the Xeroform

  • Bad smell coming from the wound

  • Fever above 100.4 °F (38°C) or chills

  • Increasing pain

  • Bleeding