nursing care for suture removal

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what is suture?

Suture or surgical suture more commonly referred to as stitches is sterile surgical threads used to sew body tissues together after a cut, injury or surgery.

The suture is a medical device used by doctors, surgeons and embalmers to hold the skin, internal organs or blood vessels together in case of an injury or surgery where they have been cut open or surgically operated. Sutures are strong, non- toxic, hypoallergenic and flexible enough to be used for stitching the body tissues.

types of suture and their uses

There are several different types of sutures available with different properties to be used for varied surgical needs depending upon the type of tissue being stitched together and the duration of time required for the suture to be in place. Sutures are mainly classified into two groups namely;

  1. Absorbable sutures – The absorbable sutures require non manual removal and breaks down after a given period of time into the tissue as the wound has healed
  2. Non-absorbable sutures – The non-absorbable sutures do not break even after a given period of time and requires to be manually removed by a doctor after the wound or incision has healed.

Types of absorbable or dissolvable sutures

  • Polyglactin Suture – It may be used for buried dermal sutures or continuous subcuticular suture
  • Polyglycolic Acid Suture – It can be used for buried dermal sutures or continuous subcuticular suture
  • Catgut Suture – this natural suture is rarely used
  • Poliglecaprone Suture – Might be used for buried dermal sutures and or continuous subcuticular suture
  • Polydioxanone Suture – This type of suture too can be used for buried dermal sutures or continuous
  • Subcuticular suture

Types of non – absorbable sutures

  • Polypropylene Suture
  • Polyamide Suture
  • Polyester Suture – can be used for tendon repair
  • Silk Suture – Rarely used in modern procedures.
  • Steel Suture
  • Nylon Suture – Used for skin closure and is minimally reactive. It can also be used for vascular anastomoses and tendon and nerve repairs
  • Cotton Suture

suture removal

There are three types of suture techniques namely; intermittent, blanket and continuous and determining the technique used helps in the safe suture removal. Absorbable suture don’t require removal, while non – absorbable suture needs to be removed after 7 to 14 days or as determined by the type of surgery and the healing of the wound.

Here are the steps involved with suture removal

  • Suture removal should be done only by a healthcare professional
  • Prior permission from a doctor or surgeon needs to be obtained before suture removal.
  • Alternate suture are removed first, then the remaining sutures are removed after adequate assessment of the skin tissue.
  • Place steri – strips after every suture removal along the incision line.

suture wound care

Suture wound care involves keeping the wound completely dry for the first 24 hours. Only after that one can start washing it carefully with warm water and liquid soap at least once a day. Also apply an antibiotic ointment after washing and drying the wound to prevent a thick scab from forming over the sutures.

how can we help?

We provide quality and reliable at home healthcare services, so you don’t have to travel to a hospital or clinic for small procedures. We have a team of highly efficient and reputable health professionals ranging from senior doctors and nurses to physical therapists and other health professionals all medically trained and equipped to help a patient. We can also help you with proper and careful suture removal at your home. So all you need to is give us a call and sit back and relax our representative doctor would soon visit you at your home.

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