Harvard Health Letter

In brief: Take off that Band-Aid!

In brief

Take off that Band-Aid!

You're supposed to keep a wound covered and dry for a day or two. But an Australian study is rubbing some doubt into that wound-care supposition.

Doctors in the Mackay area of Queensland enrolled about 850 skin surgery patients in their study. Skin cancer is common in Australia, and about half of the patients had skin abnormalities excised that tests later showed to be cancerous.

Everyone was stitched up and had their surgical wound dressed like normal. Half received the standard advice to keep the wound covered and dry for 48 hours, while the others were told to uncover the wound within 12 hours and not to fret about getting it wet.

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