I am 4 weeks post FTT. At my day 5 doctor visit, we noticed a red bump at the top of the incision. I figured it was a stitch coming out, and the nurse tried to coax it out w/ sharp tweezers, but nothing came of it. Yesterday while massaging the incision, I realized that the bump was no longer red and was just skin colored, and underneath it feel like a small pebble. The PS nurse said it would go away by itself eventually or I can try to get it dug out again. No infection. What should I do?
Suture Abscess--dig It out or Leave It Alone?
Doctor Answers 9
Treatment of Suture Abscess?
Thank you for the question.
It is difficult to give you good advice without direct examination. I would suggest that you make sure your operating plastic surgeon sees the area ( not just the “PS nurse").
If the area is truly related to a stitch, then either modality of treatment will work. Usually, the stitch will come to the surface and be removed easily. Generally, there is no need to “dig it out”.
Again, your plastic surgeon is in the best position to help you with this and other postoperative questions and concerns.
Leave it-- Let it dissolve.
Depending upon the specific type of suture utilized, these sutures typically resorb in two to three months following surgery. At this point the wound has gained most of its tensile strength and scars are less likely to spread.
Unfortunately, these sutures are a foreign material and for this reason your body has a tendency to work them to the surface before they’re totally dissolved. This doesn’t represent a true allergic reaction, but instead a normal response to a foreign material. When sutures break through the skin, they can sometimes become infected and form a stitch abscess.
This is a common occurrence when this type of suture is utilized. When these sutures protrude through the skin they should be removed to avoid secondary problems. If the sutures are buried and not causing problems they should be left alone to dissolve on their own.
Spitting suture in Reno
I'm almost sure your surgeon would have used a dissolving suture. I have seen some surgeons use a deep permanent suture. If its coming to the surface it will likely spot, in that case it's easy to numb the area and remove the suture. Either way this is not a serious issue. You should not try to dig it out.
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Does a stitch need to be removed from a tummy tuck
dissolving sutures will dissolve
sutures that are permanent may work their way to the surface like a splinter but
they can be removed if troublesome
Either option is acceptable and you may see more of this over the first 3-4 months after surgery. Follow up with your plastic surgeon
Dealing with sutures deep to the skin
From the information that you provided, it appears that your doctor's office is providing you with the correct information. If a suture is coming through the skin and possibly causing inflammation, it should be removed. If it is situated right below the skin, causing no inflammation or any symptoms and is dissolvable, there is really no reason to remove it - it will disappear on its own over time. This sounds like your situation.
A permanent deep suture poking into the skin (which does not sound like your situation) may present a problem in the future and may ultimately need to be removed.
Spitting stitch after abdominoplasty
This is a deep suture that will absorb. It is not uncommon for them to spit out and cause inflamation in the process. Listen to your plastic surgeon.
Most stitch abscesses will fix themselves with topical wound care.
Most abdominoplasties are performed with the placement of many buried sutures. The body disposes of these sutures over time by an inflammatory reaction. Occasionally this may be intense and mimic a small localized infection (usually it is sterile, however). The body will "push" the suture to the skin and expel it over time, call necessitating.
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.