Any chance to avoid absorbable stitches in breast lift?

Dear doctors of realself, let me, please, ask you whether it is unavoidable to get absorbable inner stitches when undergoing breast lift/tummy tuck? I had those stitches in the past and had terrible problems, my body just won´t tolerate them (several types tried). I know well that 99,8% of people will just get ok with them but I am not one of those lucky people..Is closing me with non-absorbable sutures and removing them later an option? I need the surgery badly.Thank you very much for your time

Doctor Answers 7

Use of buried absorbable sutures for mastopexy

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buried absorbable sutures are important in most  procedures to allow the nonabsorbable skin sutures  to be removed earlier thereby avoiding suture hatch marks, scar widening or other issues.  A metulously placed intradermal running polypropylene pullout suture could be used instead of absorbable sutures, bolstered if needed with fine interrupted simple nonabsorbable sutures if needed, and/or sterristrips.

Walnut Creek Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 5 reviews


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Permanent sutures can be used, but there is no certainty that these will not be problematic, and if they are, getting them out may require an operation .  A discussion with your surgeon  as to what actually occurred with prior surgeries will be helpful in choosing a course.  The out layer can be done with a pullout suture. 

All the best. 

Jourdan Gottlieb, MD
Seattle Plastic Surgeon

Avoiding absorbing sutures with a breast lift

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Thank you for your question about your breast lift.

  • Discuss the problem and the many absorbing sutures that haven't worked for you with your surgeon.
  • Permanent ones can be used - if your body tolerates them, there is no need to remove them.
Always consult a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon.
Hope you find this information helpful. Best wishes.

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Reaction to absorbable sutures

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This is rare, but possible. I would ask whether in your experience the entire length of scar sewn with these  sutures reacted  badly or  was it a just in a few spots. If  the bad reaction was just in a few areas, you  may not have had a suture reaction. The most  common cause for " spitting  sutures" is skin tension and placing a large sized suture too close to the skin surface. Permanent  sutures could be used, but it is far  from ideal.  Small gage sutures placed  deeply in the subdermis  might be  possible.  In my experience , I have always  found an alternative  suture to use in paients who "may" have had  a reaction to  absorbable sutures.


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Discuss the suture problem with your surgeon.  It is possible to use permanent sutures in rare cases.

Robert E. Zaworski, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 61 reviews


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Yes, it's perfectly possible to use Standard sutures in the deeper layers but there's one small problem. To remove them you would have to open the incision which is another whole operation. Discuss carefully with your doctor but you could probably leave the  Standard sutures in place for life

Sherwood Baxt, MD
Paramus Plastic Surgeon

Are absorbable sutures the only option?

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There are many suture materials available today. They are absorbable sutures (they disappear over time) and non-absorbable sutures (they are not designed to disappear over time).  Even with these two major categories there are multiple options based on the specific material, strength, retention, and manufacturing process. The desired need and duration of function dictates which type is ideal in a given situation. In addition, any history of an adverse reaction would lead to choosing a specific type.  It is possible to use non-absorbable sutures and leave them in if there are no reasons to remove them.  You may be able to feel these as small bumps under the skin.  Sometimes you can not feel them at all.  I have had patients that had reactions to many of the absorbable sutures and non-absorbable ones were used.  These were left in and she did well.  Having this discussion prior to surgery could help you and your surgeon choose your best options.  Best of luck.

David J. Wages, MD
Peabody Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 33 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.