Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Not Stuck On Band-Aid. Band-Aid Hates Me!

Seriously. This is ridiculous!

Last Thursday, I had a funky mole excised from my leg. It was being weird, and our doctor agreed it should probably not get to stay a part of me. I'm not stressed about this. Our family has had so many funky things taken off and tested, I realize I've just gotten used to it. Last time, by the time they called with the biopsy results, I'd completely forgotten about the whole thing. But this is not my point.

After they excised the mole, they put one of those large band-aids over the area, and I went on my way.  The next morning I changed the bandage, put on a fresh large band-aid, and headed out on my busy day. Dear Youngest Daughter and I made a nice early start, and headed for Medford. It was a long, busy, fun day-the four-hour drive to Medford, walking around and shopping, the drive back to Klamath, more shopping, then the drive home. As the day progressed, I was in more and more pain from the stitches, or so I thought. We got home at 6:30 pm, and both had places to be right then, so we were in a bit of a hurry. I noticed that my incision had bled, so I thought I'd give it a fresh cover before we rushed off for the rest of our evening. Being in a hurry, I ripped the bandage off...

Oh, was that ever a bad idea!!!  Apparently, with all of the sitting, driving, and walking of the day, the four corners of the band-aid had really adhered to my skin. When I ripped it off, each corner took a chunk of my skin with it. OWWW!!! I didn't have time to do much about it just then, so I put on another band-aid to protect the stitches, but rotated ninety degrees so as to leave the torn bits alone. We took off for our next events, and were gone for another couple of hours. By that time, I was in rather a lot of discomfort. It really stings to have strips of skin torn off!

By the next afternoon, it all just hurt, so I had our Dear Eldest Daughter, home from college for Easter, help me. That whole part of my leg was traumatized by that point, by adhesives. What wasn't held together with stitches or torn by the band-aid was irritated and sore where the other bandages had been stuck. We tried to improvise a covering that would not involve more band-aids. Our genius plan involved a large gauze pad, with Coban wrapped all around my leg to hold it on. It was a great idea. It failed. Every time I walked, the whole thing would slip and bunch up, which was not only uncomfortable but truly ineffective. I decided that the nice fabric band-aids that really stick were no longer a good idea, and switched to the wimpy plastic ones that I usually hate. If I use them on a cut finger, they fall off in a very short time, which is just irritating. Dear Eldest Daughter was so helpful. In the end, we put a small band-aid over the stitches, and over each torn place. It was tricky to place each one so that it covered the sore bit, but wasn't stuck over another sore bit, but we did it. This was Saturday.

Today is Wednesday. Over the past three days, I have gone through varying degrees of discomfort. Sometimes it's all pretty okay. At others, it just starts to burn. By yesterday, I was only covering the stitches, and the most affected torn bits with small band-aids. Last night, it was all just burning and stinging, so when I got home at the end of the evening, I took off the wimpy little plastic band-aids...and they had created new sores! ...sigh...  I must really have a reaction to something in the band-aids. I did have a reaction to the adhesive patches back when I wore a heart monitor a couple of years ago. By the time that week was over, I looked like I'd been attacked by an giant, acid-oozing octopus!

By last night, what started as an inch-long incision had become an area about four by six inches, with several wounds from band-aid damage, and with all the other skin irritated and sore from adhesive reaction. Though I was trying to protect my stitches from friction damage, the band-aids themselves have become a larger problem! It is just a mess!

So now, I have resorted to the CuddlDuds bandage....a.k.a. longjohns- smoother and less abrasive than Levis! Since there is apparently no form of band-aid in the house that doesn't cause larger problems, I am reduced to healing salve and long johns. I've just been to the store in search of latex-free band-aids, hoping that would solve my little dilemma, but they don't have a single one. I'll try the drugstore later, when they're open.

Things about which I have not gone into unnecessary detail: things like seeping, and torn-off scabs during the night, and the effect of pantyhose when skin has been torn off. Wasn't that thoughtful of me? ;)

What started as a minor incision with stitches now looks like I was attacked with claws, sandpaper and acid.

So, far from being anxious about a phone call with biopsy results, I have instead spent almost six days suffering increasing levels of pain and frustration! They seem so helpful and innocent, don't they? But then they turn to the Dark Side, and the nightmare begins.


  1. Momma!!

    I am so sorry for your pain and suffering!! You made me laugh though with your analogies, and humorous way of telling about your suffering. You have a gift with words! <3

  2. *snif!* Thank you sweet Daughter! You know my family, no matter how bad it gets, if we can find a way to laugh about it, we'll be okay. :) Thank you again for helping me through the bandaging nightmare/adventure. :)

  3. p.s. I got the call from the doctor's office yesterday. This funky mole, like the others I've had offed, was benign. I do like that kind of call. :)