After any surgery, the most important thing that needs to be taken care of is the stitches/sutures. Serious cuts or incisions from surgical procedures may require stitches, or sutures, to hold tissues together while they heal.
Stitches are the most important thing that protects the internal organs to form infection and re-injury. They need to be observed carefully until they are dried and removed.
Care For Stitches/Sutures:
The doctor or nurse will give you instructions regarding how to take care of your stitches as your cut heals.
- They will teach you specific steps for cleaning and dressing the wound.
- You are advised to keep the wound and bandages dry.
- The doctor will prescribe an antibiotic ointment to help prevent infection.
- The doctor will make you aware of signs that may indicate infection.
Following are the signs and symptoms that indicate infection for which you need to see your doctor immediately:
- Increased body temperature - fever higher than 100 degrees fahrenheit is a sign of infection.
- Red streaks on the skin near the wound or when edges of the wound leak blood or pus indicates infection.
- If any of your stitches break open or skin around the wound becomes red, swollen, hot or painful you need to see your doctor and avoid doing anything at home.
- Swimming may cause pain at the site of sutures due to excessive movement of the body causing the suture to tear open.
- Lifting heavy weight may cause pressure on the skin which is sutured thereby leading to a tear or reopening of the wound leading to pain. If such a thing happens you need to see your doctor immediately.
- Sutures may get infected if not cleaned properly or if the hygiene level is not maintained leading to pain and infection. In such cases, you need to see your doctor and get it cleaned and re-sutured if required.
- Keeping the suture area wet may also increase chances of infection leading to pain. To avoid this it is recommended to keep the sutured area clean and dry.
- If kids play in the mud and if the sutured site is exposed to mud it can be infected and cause pain where they need to be taken to the surgeon and get it cleaned.
- Suture pain may also occur because of rubbing or friction against clothes which may lead to redness and pain. In such a case you need to see your doctor.
- Also, sometimes after the sutures are removed there can be an infection because of scratching which can introduce infection into the wound. It may become warm and painful and may discharge pus.
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