skin graft lower R leg for a melanoma mole

June 7, 2014 - 17:07

Hi i am in the 2nd week of recovery for a skin graft on my lower R leg, also had a sentinel node biopsy & the donor site was my upper R leg, it was discovered at my 1st dressing change that the graft took 80%, apparently anything above 70% is considered good as its rare to get 100% take, Is this true? The RGN that is coming out to do my dressings at home twice a week was concerned that the graft didn't look anymore improved since she had changed the dressing 3 days before, she freely admits she is not very familiar with such an extensive graft site & was concerned that there was a lot of exudate/gunk coming from around the graft site, there is no signs of infection & it appears to be normal redness, i feel an improvement, i can put my foot to the floor without too much discomfort & ive reduced the pain meds. Should i be worried the RGN wanted me to see my GP, but as the GP's secretary said she reckons the GP will just refer me back to Beaumont were it was done !! I live in Meath, Beaumont is a nightmare, i got no aftercare advice or support from them, they didn't even supply my with crutches but yet i was to have complete bed rest??? How was i to get home or to the bathroom ??? I won't be seeing the consultant that did the surgery till Mon 16th, any advice welcome,any complimentary therapies or supplements to speed up the healing process ???? Any help or advice would be greatly appreciated, feeling very let down by the Health system here !!!!

June 7, 2014 - 23:05

Hi Babs,
Sorry to hear that your disappointed with the Irish med system, glad your over your surgery and hopefully on the mend.
I had a lesion removed from my left upper foot in August 2013 and had a full thickness graft onto the foot. It heeled eventually but had to go on a course of antibiotics for swelling and infection (small amount of white gunk on one side) my consultant said to keep it aired and protect it well with gel bandaging when I wanted to get out and about and also recommended that I keep it elevated when at rest. Also, like yourself I was left to hop out to the car after the surgery (UHG)as they didn't provide me with crutches either. One thing is I cannot commend my consultant enough as I got great aftercare, advice and support from her. So much so that she gave me her e-mail address and phone number and called me a few times to see how I was getting on.
I never took anything to help with the healing but Arnica is supposed to help? You could ask in a health shop to see what they recommend.

Keep us posted with how it heals