1. Suture Care for a normal sutured wound:
  • Keep sutured wounds completely dry for first 24 hours. If needed, use a sponge bath.
  • After 24 hours, can take brief showers.
  • Avoid swimming, baths or soaking the wound until sutures are removed. (Reason: Water in the wound can interfere with healing).
  • Apply antibiotic ointment (such as Polysporin) 3 times a day (no prescription needed). Reason: to prevent infection and a thick scab.
  • Cleanse with warm water once daily or if becomes soiled.
  • Change wound dressing when wet or soiled.
  • Dressing no longer needed when edge of wound closed (usually 48 hours). EXCEPTION: dressing needed to prevent sutures from catching on clothing.
  • For pain relief, give acetaminophen (e.g. Tylenol) or ibuprofen as needed.
  1. Removal Date: Guidelines for when particular sutures (stitches) should be removed approximately:
Face 4-5 days
Neck 7 days
Arms and back of hands 7 days
Scalp 7-10 days
Chest, abdomen or back 7-10 days
Legs and top of feet 10 days
Palms, soles, fingers or toes 12-14 days
Overlying a joint 12-14 days


  1. Removal Delays:
  • Don’t miss your appointment for removing sutures.
  • Leaving sutures in too long can leave unnecessary skin marks and occasional scarring.
  • It also makes suture removal more difficult.
  1. Suture Out Early:
  • If the sutures come out early, make an appointment with your physician.
  • Reinforce the wound with tape or butterfly Band-Aids until the office visit.
  1. Wound Protection: After removal of sutures,
  • Protect the wound from injury during the following month.
  • Avoid sports that could re-injure the wound. If a sport is essential, apply tape before playing.
  • Allow the scab to fall off naturally. Do not try to pick it off. (Reason: prevent scarring)
  • Protect the area with sunblock when outside.
  1. Call Your Doctor If:
  • Looks infected: Increasing redness, increasing swelling, increasing tenderness, puss discharge.
  • Fever
  • Sutures come out early

Credit: www.healthychildren.org

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