Stapedectomy Post-Op Care
- The Band-Aid may be removed and left off the morning after surgery. Change the cotton ball at least daily until the ear stops draining (usually 10–14 days). The incision on the ear canal surface of the tragus—the little flap in front of the ear canal—is closed with stitches that dissolve by themselves.
- The ear canal is filled with an antibiotic ointment. It will usually be mixed with some blood and will melt and drain from the ear canal during the first 10–14 days after surgery. This brownish-to-tan-colored drainage is normal. Yellow or green drainage with a foul smell may be a sign of infection, and you should call the office if this occurs.
- You may wash your hair the day after surgery. However, try to keep the ear canal dry until your doctor says you may get it wet. To prevent water from entering the ear canal when bathing, take a cotton ball and massage Vaseline into it. Then place this Vaseline-covered cotton ball in the outer hollow of the ear canal. Do not push the cotton ball deep into the ear canal. Once you are finished bathing, remove the Vaseline-covered cotton ball, wipe away any excess Vaseline with a tissue and place a clean, dry cotton ball into the outer hollow of the ear.
- Gentle nose blowing is okay. Avoid vigorous physical exercise or activity for two to three weeks following surgery.
- The first office visit after the surgery should be in approximately three weeks.