Discharge Instructions: Unna Boot (Pediatric)

Discharge Instructions: Unna Boot (Pediatric)

October 08, 2017

Discharge Instructions: Unna Boot (Pediatric)

Your child will be going home with an Unna boot in place. An Unna boot is a dressing and wrap combination that is applied from the foot to the knee. An Unna boot has a special medicine in the gauze to help heal burns or skin sores and protect new skin. There are two kinds of bandages: white and pink. The white bandage is changed every 1 to 3 days. In most cases, the pink bandage is changed 1 time a week. Your child will need to visit the healthcare provider to have the Unna boot changed. Here’s what you need to know about home care.

Home care

Some dos and don'ts:

  • Make sure your child does not get the Unna boot wet.

  • Cover the dressing completely with a plastic bag before your child takes a shower. Tape the plastic to the skin or use a rubber band above and below the dressing.

  • If your child needs to take a tub bath, have your child dangle the limb with the Unna boot on the side of the tub and out of the water.

  • Take the plastic bag off hen your child is done with his or her shower or bath.

  • Keep your child’s skin clean and dry.

  • Every day, wash any other burns or sores not covered by a dressing.

  • Remember, some drainage from the Unna boot dressing is expected. Don’t be alarmed if the soiled dressing has an unpleasant odor to it. This is normal. It happens because the drainage from the wound dries to the dressing.

  • Don’t allow your child to stand or sit in the same position for more than 30 minutes at a time.

  • Keep your child’s legs elevated using pillows, as much as possible. This will help keep swelling down.


Make a follow-up appointment as directed by your healthcare provider.


When to call your child’s healthcare provider

Call the healthcare provider right away if your child has any of the following:

  • Tingling or numbness in the injured body part

  • Fever as directed by your healthcare provider, or your child:

    • Is younger than 12 weeks and has a fever of 100.4°F (38° C) or higher because your baby may need to be seen by his or her healthcare provider

    •  Has repeated fevers above 104°F (40° C) at any age

    • Is younger than 2 years old and his or her fever continues for more than 24 hours

    • Is 2 years or older and his or her fever continues for more than 3 days

  • Severe pain that cannot be relieved

  • Decreased ability to move extremity in the Unna boot

  • Unna boot that feels too tight or too loose

  • Swelling, coldness, or blue-gray color in the toes

  • Drainage from Unna boot that smells different than usual

  • Unna boot that is damaged or has rough edges that hurt

  • Unna boot that gets wet

  • New blisters of ulcers


October 08, 2017


Collins, L. Diagnosis and Treatment of Venous Ulcers. American Family Physician. 2010, is. 81, ed. 8, pp 989-996.

Reviewed By:  

Bass, Pat F. III, MD, MPH,Joseph, Thomas N., MD