Shower After Breast Lift and Absorbable Stitches? Afraid Of Infection; Should I Do A Sponge Bath Instead?

I done a breast lift and implant before 4 days my doctor said that I can shower, but I'm worried and scared that I will get an infection, can I skip showering and only do sponge bath? or it is important for the absorbable stitches ? please help

Doctor Answers 6

Shower after breast lift is better than bathing in a tub (even with a sponge)!

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

You seem to miss your surgeon's point, and are asking reasonable questions. Your dissolving stitches use your own body's moisture to dissolve, not external moisture. Once your incisions are sealed (usually by 3-4 days if everything is healing properly), external moisture doesn't get to the sutures unless you soak too long or scrub too hard and tear open tiny areas of your incision (both bad).

Showering is good because it cleans the wound surfaces, minimizing the risk of superficial infection which could cause wound breakdown or stitch abscess, as long as the shower is not too long, too hot, or too vigorous!

Bathing in a tub is absolutely the worst thing to do for a healing incision, especially if the incisions are immersed in the water you are sitting in. Remember what body parts are contaminated by fecal and vaginal bacteria, what parts are in the water, and which of those bacteria you want on your incisions. (This is also why some women who bathe excessively have more frequent urinary tract infections.)

Sponge bathing is a tad better, but not if you sit in the water you absorb with your sponge and use on your breasts! Can you say "Poop water?" Sorry to be so graphic, but what you really need to hear! Sponge bathing from running water in a clean sink is actually OK, but unnecessary.

Gentle tepid and short showers will cleanse you and your incisions without worry of sutures dissolving prematurely. Clean water is all that touches your breasts, and once contaminated, it goes down the drain! Using good hygiene (hand washing before touching your incisions) will avoid most risks of infection. Follow your doctor's advice and call if you have increased redness, swelling, pain or purulent (pus) drainage. Fever and chills come later, and mean you really did miss the other signs of infection, which come first. Best wishes!

Minneapolis Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 263 reviews

Bathing Following Your BreastLift

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}
Soap and water does not hurt #healing #incisions. You may #shower after 3 days. Leave the adhesive strips or tape in place if they are adherent. If they come loose, snip loose edge. Do not pull these off. Furthermore, it is always recommended to call and see your surgeon to discuss your healing concerns.

Jed H. Horowitz, MD, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 116 reviews

Wound seals in 24 hours

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

I usually have my patients shower 24 hours after surgery.  In 24 hours, the wounds are sealed.  If your doctor said 4 days, that is certainly fine.  I would not recommend on taking a sponge bath.

Best of Luck,

Gary Horndeski, M.D.

Gary M. Horndeski, MD
Texas Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 230 reviews

You might also like...

Showering after Breast Augmentation/Lifting?

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

Thank you for the question.

Always best to ask these types of questions from your plastic surgeon who may have his/her preferences and is ultimately responsible for your care. You can rest assured that the sutures do not require an external source of moisture to dissolve.

Best wishes.

Showering VS Tub Bathing After Plastic Surgery

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

A stitched surgical wound is sealed by 36 hours after surgery.There is no danger of any materials penetrating the wound after that time. On the whole, showers are cleaner than bath bathing after surgery.

Peter A. Aldea, MD
Memphis Plastic Surgeon

Showers vs sponge bath

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

Usually showers are better. Baths can be more contaminated from the groin region bacteria. Just check with your doctor.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.