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Adhesive or non-adhesive; disk or foam pad

HCPCS code

Name of the Procedure:

Common Name: Adhesive or Non-Adhesive Dressing
Technical/Medical Term: HCPCS A5126 - Adhesive or Non-Adhesive; Disk or Foam Pad


An adhesive or non-adhesive disk or foam pad is a medical dressing used to cover and protect wounds. These dressings help to absorb exudate (fluid released from the wound), prevent infection, and promote healing.


These dressings are primarily used to:

  • Cover and protect wounds, such as cuts, abrasions, surgical sites, and pressure ulcers.
  • Absorb wound exudate to reduce the risk of maceration (breakdown of skin due to moisture).
  • Provide a barrier against infection and external contaminants.
  • Maintain a moist environment that supports wound healing.


The use of adhesive or non-adhesive disks or foam pads is indicated for:

  • Patients with acute wounds (e.g., post-surgical wounds, lacerations).
  • Patients with chronic wounds (e.g., pressure ulcers, diabetic foot ulcers).
  • Wounds with moderate to heavy exudate.


  • Pre-Procedure Instructions: Clean the wound area with a sterile solution and ensure the skin surrounding the wound is dry.
  • Diagnostic Tests: Typically, no specific diagnostic tests are required beforehand. Assessment of the wound condition is essential.

Procedure Description

  1. Clean the Wound: Use a sterile saline solution to clean the wound thoroughly.
  2. Prepare the Skin: Dry the surrounding skin to ensure proper adhesion of the dressing.
  3. Select the Dressing: Choose the appropriate size and type (adhesive or non-adhesive, disk, or foam pad) based on the wound's condition.
  4. Apply the Dressing: Carefully place the dressing over the wound. If using an adhesive pad, ensure it sticks well to the surrounding skin. For non-adhesive pads, secure it with gauze or a bandage.
  5. Monitor and Change: Check the dressing regularly and change it according to medical advice or when it becomes saturated with exudate.


The application of the dressing typically takes a few minutes.


This procedure can be performed:

  • At home by the patient or caregiver.
  • In a hospital setting.
  • In outpatient clinics or surgical centers.


  • No specific healthcare professionals are needed if the patient or caregiver is trained.
  • If needed, a nurse or a wound care specialist may assist.

Risks and Complications

  • Common Risks: Skin irritation or allergic reactions to the adhesive.
  • Rare Risks: Infection if the dressing is not changed regularly or properly.


  • Expected Benefits: Protection of the wound, reduced risk of infection, improved healing environment.
  • Timeframe: Benefits are typically realized immediately upon application, with improved wound healing over time.


  • Post-Procedure Care: Regularly monitor the wound and change the dressing as recommended.
  • Recovery Time: Varies depending on the wound type and severity; consult with healthcare providers for specific timelines.
  • Restrictions/Follow-Up: Follow any specific instructions given for activity restrictions or follow-up appointments.


  • Other Treatments: Gauze dressings, hydrocolloid dressings, alginate dressings.
  • Pros and Cons: Alternatives may offer better moisture retention or be more suitable for different wound types. Consult a healthcare provider for the best option.

Patient Experience

  • During the Procedure: Minimal discomfort. Patients may feel slight pressure or stickiness when applying an adhesive dressing.
  • After the Procedure: Generally comfortable, with minor adjustments needed for adhesive dressings. Pain management usually involves over-the-counter solutions in case of irritation.

Pain management and comfort measures should be discussed with healthcare providers to ensure optimal care.

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