The local anaesthetic will wear off a few hours after surgery. Simple pain killers are usually all that is required and it is advisable to take these regularly at first. If you experience any severe or continuous pain or feel unwell please contact your doctor. Pain over the incision generally improves over the first two weeks but in some cases lasts for longer.

You will be provided with a sling to wear for the first few days after the operation. This needs to be removed regularly so that you can stretch your arm above your head and bend and straighten your elbow. It is important to keep your hand elevated to aid in the removal of swelling and prevent stiffness of your fingers.

After the operation your hand will be in a large bandage. An appointment will be arranged for two to four days after your surgery with the Hand Therapist in the Therapy Department, Yeovil Hospital to replace this with a lighter dressing. If you are unable to attend this please contact you GP surgery to arrange for your bandage to be reduced. All dressings should be kept clean and dry and covered with a plastic bag when washing until the stitches are removed.

When can I use my hand?

You can use your hand normally for light functional tasks whilst in the bandage. It is also important to keep your fingers moving by stretching open your hand and then making a first regularly during the day. Avoid pushing up from a chair and heavy gripping tasks for the first few weeks after your surgery.

When will my stitches be removed?

Your stitches will be removed at about 10 days after your surgery and is usually done by your Hand Therapist. Once the wound is fully healed you will be able to wash your hand and start massaging the scar with an aqueous non-perfumed moisturising cream.

When can I return to driving and go back to work?

Following the removal of your stitches you can return to driving as long as you are comfortable and have enough strength and control to drive safely. How quickly you return to work depends on your job.

Generally light activity/secretarial work will be at about two weeks and heavier activity at four to six weeks.

The Hand Therapy Service is available Monday to Friday 8.30am-5pm

If you have any questions or require further information or advice during the above hours please contact:

Therapy department: 01935 384 358
Therapy fax: 01935 384 266

If you have any serious concerns outside of these hours please contact your GP, Accident and Emergency or Minor Injuries Unit.

Ref: 33/20/19 Review: 11/22