Healing a skin graft begins in the hospital, as patients stay from a few days to more than a week depending on the thickness on the graft. The medical staff ensures that the donor and graft sites are both healing, and the graft is building blood vessels, notes Healthline.
The formation of the new blood vessels is a crucial sign. If the graft does not start adding those within 24 to 36 hours, the body may reject the graft. If the graft never assimilates into the rest of the body, the patient may have to undergo a new operation. With a full-thickness graft, rehabilitation in the form of occupational or physical therapy may also be necessary, as stated by Healthline.
Once the patient goes home from the hospital, he follows instructions about caring for the donor and graft sites, and he may fill the doctor's prescription for painkillers if necessary. Following those instructions is the best bet for swift healing without infection. It is important to avoid pulling or stretching the site of the graft for three weeks to a month, as well as to leave the donor site alone for two to three weeks while everything heals, according to Healthline.