This page gives you information about what to expect following your laser excision.

Follow up appointments

  • The consultant will see you in an outpatient appointment 2 to 4 weeks after your discharge to review your recovery progress.
  • The Head and Neck speech and language therapists and dietitians will advise you on the consistency of food you can safely manage before you are discharged from hospital. They will do regular joint outpatient reviews to help build up your diet.

What to expect following discharge

  • You should clean your teeth as normal but be careful in the area close to the laser wound. If you find that food sticks to the wound then gently rinse with the mouthwash you are discharged with or warm salt water.
  • Immediately following the surgery the area treated with the laser will look charred. This is normal.
  • The wound may look quite large following surgery but it will heal quickly. After a week or so you may notice the wound has turned a yellow/white colour in appearance. This is normal and does not mean it is infected.
  • The wound may also be quite uncomfortable following the laser surgery. This pain can be managed with simple over-the-counter pain relief such as paracetamol and ibuprofen. You can take paracetamol and ibuprofen at the same time or spaced apart. Please ask your pharmacist for advice. Ibuprofen is best taken with food or on a full stomach. Follow the instructions on the label or leaflet about how to take the medicines.

We will also send you home with pain relief.

What to do if you have a problem at home


If the pain you are experiencing is not being controlled with the pain relief you have been discharged with, then please contact your GP for advice. The Head and Neck Clinical Nurse Specialists (CNS) can also advise you.


This is to be expected following a laser excision and will slowly reduce over time. However, if the swelling worsens, please contact the Head and Neck CNS for advice.


If the swelling starts to affect your ability to breathe, please call 999 and ask for an ambulance.


If the wound oozes or bleeds, this can usually be stopped by applying pressure over the area for at least 10 minutes with a clean rolled up handkerchief or swab. Contact the Head and Neck CNS if you are concerned. If the bleeding continues or if you are bleeding a lot, please go to the nearest Accident and Emergency Department or call 999.


If you have any signs of infection such as a raised temperature, redness, new pain or a discoloured discharge then contact your GP, as you may need a short course of antibiotics.

Contact information

Clinical Nurse Specialists

Tel: 0300 422 6785

Monday to Friday, 8:00am to 4:00pm

Head and Neck Dietitian

Tel: 0300 422 3460

Monday to Friday, 8:00am to 4:00pm

Head and Neck Speech and Language Therapists

Tel: 0300 422 8105

Monday to Friday, 8:00am to 4:00pm

Out of Hours

Ward 2b

Tel: 0300 422 6184

Printable version of this page

Discharge information following a Laser Excision GHPI1670_06_21 Department: Oncology Review due: June 2024 PDF, 508.1 KB, 2 pages
Reference number GHPI1670_06_21
Department Oncology
Review due June 2024