A nurse is performing wound care on a 3-day post-operative patient who has undergone exploratory laparotomy with vertical abdominal incision. Which of the following would indicate that the nurse is cleansing the operative site correctly?

The nurse cleanses the incision from top to bottom and then laterally from the center out


•Always wipe from the cleanest area to the least cleanest area. In vertical wounds, this is usually from top to bottom and then laterally from the center out. An exploratory laparotomy involves a vertical midline incision into the abdomen. 

•Horizontal wounds must be cleansed from the center of the incision going outward.

•Stab or drain wounds must be cleansed in circular motion.

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