BENGALURU: There’s a lot to consider while scheduling a surgical procedure, like the post surgical period and ideal conditions that would help in quick recovery. The effects of weather on surgical wound healing, overall health and how the human body responds to change in temperature, are the major factors to keep in mind. Winter can be harsh on your skin and might make certain medical conditions difficult but it can also be a great time to schedule a surgical procedure because of the various benefits it comes with.
Especially in cities like Bengaluru where winters are moderate, months of December, January and February are the most ideal time to schedule your surgery. Here are a few reasons why Bengaluru winter is the most ideal time to schedule surgeries:
Surgical scars and wounds heal more quicklyDuring summer, surgical wounds are more likely to heal slower as compared to winter, because the overexposure to the sun’s rays affects the healing rate of surgical wounds and surgical sites.
Better protection to post-surgical scars
In winter, we tend to keep our bodies warm by adding multiple layers of clothes. Similarly, this also works well for surgical incisions. The dressing done for the surgical wounds acts as insulation during winter without making us feel hot, thus providing better protection to the post-surgical scars.
Reduction in disease-carrying organisms
Disease carrying organisms like mosquitos and flies can often breed on open and active wounds or surgical sites, which may lead to complications such as malaria, trypanosomiasis and bilharzia. In winter, these organisms tend to disappear due to cold winds and the chilly weather, which also hinders their breeding.
Less chances of infection
In summer, the climate is so hot and humid that it can considerably increase the chances of infection of the surgical site. Incessant sweating in the summer causes the sogging of the surgical wound, resulting in infection. Some drugs that are prescribed for post surgical care can produce hot flashes and they cannot be used during summer. Hence, in winter these complications reduce considerably and accelerate the recovery period.
Winter can lower inflammation
The cold weather acts as a catalyst during the first two days after surgery because the cold can aid in relieving discomfort as well as in reducing swelling and bruising. The cold shrinks the blood vessels, some of which are incised during surgery. By decreasing the blood flow through these vessels, swelling and bruising can be minimised. Hence, the inflammation can be reduced in the post surgical period along with proper care.
(The author is a laparoscopic and general surgeon, Apollo Spectra Hospitals, Koramangala)