Is It Okay to Wait 3 Weeks Before Stitches Are Removed after Mommy Makeover?

I had a mommy makeover 2 weeks ago. I was supposed to get my stitches out (FTT/BA/BL) today, but due to taking too long and waiting 1.5 hours, I had to leave and reschedule the soonest 5 days from today. Should I be concerned? My PS doesn't seem concerned, but I've read some of the docs mention railroad track scarring.

Doctor Answers 26

Suture removal

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The good thing about suture removal is that your surgeon will be the best to know how long the sutures can stay in.  If you leave them in too long, that will for certain be a problematic scar situation where you can see railroad marks or cross hatching markings neither of which is desirable.  The ideal scenario is that they be removed exactly when he tells you (they don't necessarily need to be removed by a certain person, if your surgeon approves). 

Dallas Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 125 reviews

Mommy Makeover and suture removal

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After a Mommy Makeover sutures may or may not need to be removed depending on the type of suture your surgeon used and how the incision was closed.  If the suture was run under the surface of the skin (intradermal) and you can't see it, it would be alright to leave it in for three weeks.  If the suture is seen on the surface of the skin - like a baseball stitch - it may leave a more prominent scar (railroad track) if left in longer.  Check back with your surgeon.  

Vincent D. Lepore, MD
San Jose Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 63 reviews

Many variables

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I have very few sutures to remove as I put in mostly dissolving type sutures. There are too many variables in how different surgeons operate to be able to say whether or not a few days period will make a difference in your case. Your surgeon's word is the best thing you will have.


Best Regards,


John Di Saia MD

John P. Di Saia, MD
Orange Plastic Surgeon

Suture removal following mommy makeover

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Leaving permanent (removable) sutures in place for too long can indeed lead to a less ideal scar, with some degree of the "railroad tracks" that you mentioned.  That said, 5 additional days will likely not make a tremendous difference.  With my patients, I try to avoid this issue entirely by closing all tummy tuck and cosmetic breast incisions with dissolvable sutures that are beneath the surface of the skin.

OK to leave stitches more than two weeks?

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I don't like to leave stitches in place for more than two weeks, but in select cases where the stitches are small and in discrete locations in might be OK.  After one week the marks that stitches leave begin to become permanent. 

David Stoker, MD
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 62 reviews

How long to wait for suture removal?

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Thank you for your question.  Not every surgeon uses the same sutures when closing incisions for any surgical procedure, so the best advice would be to check with your surgeon to see if waiting 5 extra days is ok with he or she.  Your surgeon would know best as to how long your specific sutures can stay in place before it could potentially cause an issue (like poor scarring).  Some sutures when left in too long will cause a 'railroad track/mark' type scar, while others that are absorbable are ok to leave in for long periods of time.  Please follow up with your surgeon and follow his or her recommendation.  

Stitch removal

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Most of  sutures are internal and dissolvable and do not need to be removed.   If you do have a few sutures to be removed these are usually around the belly button.  

You can trust your doctor if he or she feels they can be left in another week.   Your board certified plastic surgeon will have your best result as the goal. 

Is it okay to wait 3 weeks before stitches are removed after Mommy Make Over

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An additional 5 days probably won't make much difference in your ultimate scarring. It would be best however to make sure that you do not wait much longer than the 5 days.

John J. Edney, MD
Omaha Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 133 reviews

Stitches removal

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While keeping the stitches in for a longer time may make your scars more visible, it really depends on the surgical techniques and suturing method your surgeon applied, as well as adhering to proper post-surgery instructions on incision hygiene and care.

Leaving them in for longer may not make a big difference, although it could make removal just a little more difficult. 

Stitch removal after mommy makeover

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If they have been in place for 2 weeks, 5 more days likely won't make a significant difference. Good luck!

Bryan Correa, MD
Houston 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.