Is it ok to take a shower after mole removal?

I just recently had a mole cauterized and shaved from my back. I was told to not get it wet for 24 hours but they never told me if showering is ok. Would shampoo, conditioner , or body wash be bad for it? I am afraid of infection as this already looks horrendous.

Doctor Answers 4

Clean your mole removal site

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Your site does look irritated but not necessarily infected. Showering is fine and is actually good because it will loosen the scab that is there. You don't want to have scabbing in removal sites - this is what creates scars. You want to keep your site clean (even clean with 1/2 peroxide and water), remove any scabs or crusty skin, and then goop it up with Polysporin or Vaseline (and cover if needed). Do this until new pink skin is forming in the site but not crustiness. This will allow the skin too heal much nicer and keep scarring to a minimum.

"This answer has been solicited without seeing this patient and cannot be held as true medical advice, but only opinion. Seek in-person treatment with a trained medical professional for appropriate care."

Showering isn't an issue...

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while some say you should keep the area dry for the first 24 hours, evidence for these claims is lacking...casual soap, shampoo or conditioner are not a problem...but the area looks a little swollen...might be a good idea to put a warm compress on it several times a day for 10-15 minutes each time...

Ken Landow, MD
Las Vegas Dermatologist

Mole Removal and Care

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After a mole is removed it is very important to take proper care to prevent scarring and infection.  I often tell my patients to clean with hydrogen peroxide and bacitracin and change the dressing twice a day.  If you are worried it is infected please return to your treating physician for examination.

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Is it ok to take a shower after mole removal?

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It is safe to shower after mole removal. Do not scrub the area but you can get it wet and then pat dry. You might consider local wound care to help the area heal.

Suzanne Kim Doud Galli, MD, PhD, FACS
Washington Facial Plastic Surgeon

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.