Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Question: Do I need to come back for suture removal?

Question: Do I need to come back for suture removal?


At NHT Medical Center we use a polyglactin 910 suture to close the donor area. I prefer using sutures to staples because they are more comfortable for the patient and result in a less noticeable scar. In addition, these absorbable sutures begin to fall off on their own 7 to 10 days after surgery as the wound heals. The patient does not have to return for suture removal saving him a trip back to the office.

This photo is of a donor incision five days after surgery. At this point you can no longer see the suture.

An article in the 1999 Journal of the Canadian Dental Association reported on the advantages of the polyglactin 910 suture compared to staples. In the survey, researchers evaluated 42 patients with scalp wounds from cosmetic surgeries. They closed half the wound with the irradiated polyglactin 910 vicryl rapide fast-absorbing suture and the other half with traditional staples. In the study of these 42 patients they found:

· No inflammatory reaction in the areas closed with the absorbable sutures compared to 1 case in the wounds closed with staples
· An average pain score of 1.82 reported by patients for the sutures compared to average pain score of 6.7 for the staples
· No patient reported suppuration, hypertrophic scarring, or alopecia with either method
· All 42 patients in the sample preferred sutures to staples