Patient Instructions – Skin Cancer Surgery

Before your operation:

  • Tell us if you are on a blood thinner. Do not change your treatment unless instructed to.
  • Unless instructed otherwise, take all your normal medication on the day of the operation.
  • Make sure you have showered and washed the area to be operated on. If there is surrounding hair please shave off a couple of centimeters around the lesion.

After your operation:

We will aim to place a splash proof dressing that will withstand gentle showers but not swimming, bathing or sweating.

If a splash proof dressing is not possible you will have a dressing that will need to be kept clean and dry until your review appointment unless advised otherwise.

Over the first few hours, the anesthetic will wear off and the wound may begin to bleed slightly. This is normal, so do not be alarmed.

If bleeding fills the dressing, press on the wound with a firm constant pressure for 10 minutes without releasing. Then redress the wound with a fresh dressing or call the clinic if concerned.

For the first 3 days:

  • If there is swelling, use ice packs on top of the dressing (wrap ice pack in a tea towel). Only use an ice pack for 10-15 minutes at a time.
  • Keep the operation site elevated and rested as much as possible. Especially if the surgery site is the lower leg.
  • Protect the wound and area. You have had skin surgery and as such you should limit activity so as to not cause undue stress or pressure to the wound. Minimising tension force on the wound from movement helps healing and reduces bruising and scarring.

If you require analgesia please use Paracetamol rather than aspirin or ibuprofen which can promote bleeding.

If you are concerned about anything post operation please contact the rooms immediately. You will be advised of wound review and suture removal timing on the day of your surgery.

Long term instructions:

If you have had a skin cancer, you will need lifelong review of not only the site of surgery, but your skin in general as there is a high risk that more skin cancers will appear.

  • Please arrange follow up appointment initially in 3 months for full skin examination
  • Long term follow up every 12 months for full skin examination unless advised otherwise.

Estimated cost:

Total cost is dependent on size, type, location of skin cancer and the procedure performed. We operate on a known gap basis. Which means that total out of pocket cost for the procedure once medicare rebates are received will be $200 for a standard excision and $300 for a complex excision, flap or graft procedure.


The doctors at Broadbeach Family Practice pride themselves on delivering comprehensive medical care for the entire family. We cover all aspects of health for patients and their families and always maintaining the highest professional and ethical standards.


Broadbeach Family Practice is an accredited general practice with its standards of medical care approved by Australian General Practice Accreditation Limited (AGPAL).

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