Stitches on outside and inside on lip

Stitch area on top lip is sore and has maintained the small bump inside lip from skin cancer being removed. See a very fine stitch left which has not reached the point of dissolving , this surgery was three weeks ago. Stitches going toward my nose has healed well

Doctor Answers 5

Residual or spitting suture three weeks lip surgery

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It is normal to experience a bump in your lip during healing.  If you notice a suture this can be removed by your surgeon.  

I am happy it is otherwise healing well.

Continue to follow up with your surgeon.

Aliso Viejo Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 11 reviews


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These are most likely sutures that are supposed to dissolve but haven't.  They should be removed ASAP before permanent scarring takes place.  Best to visit your surgeon for resolution.  

Stitch (suture) not dissolving in area of lip

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Stitch (suture) not dissolving in aHi, Barbara!  Thanks for your question!  A residual suture may be absorbable or nonabsorbable.  It's not uncommon for buried sutures - which are usually absorbed by the body over days, weeks, or months depending upon type - to be rejected by the body over time.  Sometimes you'll even get a little pimple like appearance around them.  It's best to avoid manipulation of this and to have your surgeon evaluate the area.  If it's a portion of non-aborbable suture, or if an aborbable suture is causing a problem, your surgeon may want to remove it.  I hope that this answers your question and that you love your final result!


Dr. Schmidt

As always, please remember that this response is for informational purposes only and does not constitute a patient-physician relationship.

Lip surgery - sutures not dissolving

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Thank you for asking about your lip sutures.

Please contact your surgeon and explain the problem.
S/he may want to see you to cut or remove the remaining sutures and check your healing.

Always see a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon.
Best wishes - Elizabeth Morgan MD PHD FACS

Stitches after surgery

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Barbara, I think you would do well to check in with your surgeon, for an in-person exam and discussion of your concerns.  Most external stitches, even the absorbable kind, are not typically necessary 3 weeks after surgery; if a stitch is particularly sore or or bothersome, your surgeon may remove it.  A focus of firmness and tenderness may represent growing scar tissue, which typically does well with a scar-softening steroid injection.  A bump on the inner lip may also represent a small blocked mucus gland or a tiny area of infection.  Your surgeon would be best equipped to figure out these issues after an exam, and take whatever action necessary.  Good luck in your recovery!

Inessa Fishman, MD
Atlanta Facial Plastic Surgeon

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.