Do You Need Stitches?


For proper healing, some wounds or cuts may need stitches?  Your first priority with all cuts is to stop all bleeding.  Then determine if additional care is needed. Best practice to control bleeding, is to use direct fingertip or palm pressure upon the wound.  Continue direct pressure until the bleeding stops.

Then clean the wound to remove any dirt or debris.  Plain soap and water works best.  Wounds should be addressed early, at least within the first 8 hours, though in certain situations stitches can be administered up to 24 hours. The longer medical attention is delayed, the higher probability of a bacterial infection. It is best to get medical attention as soon as possible.

Now that the bleeding has stopped and the wound has been cleaned, let’s look for certain signs that would indicate sutures or stitches would be required.

The following are wounds that most likely will need the assistance of stitches:

1. Any cut that is deep where muscle or yellow fatty tissue is visible.

2. Wounds 1 inch or longer in length.

3. Cuts around joints, where the movement of the joint would prevent proper healing.

4. Jagged or gaping wounds.

5. Torn sections with either an open flap or three sides torn away.

5. Cuts to the face or head.

The emergency room is well equipped to handle cuts and wounds. These doctors put in stitches several times a day and are well versed in the process, but cuts to the face or genitals should be treated by a plastic surgeon to reduce the possibility of excessive scaring.

Stitches can remain in place from 5 to 14 days depending upon the location of the wound. Always keep stitches dry for the first 24 hours to prevent infections. Afterward, immediately dry the affected area after bathing. Clean your stitches twice a day and apply an antibiotic ointment. If pus, redness or if the wound begins to smell bad, it may be infected and you should seek medical attention.

Categories : Uncategorized

Leave a Reply