Welcome, Friend!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

Veritas-Health LLC has recently released patient forums to our Arthritis-Health web site.

Please visit http://www.arthritis-health.com/forum

There are several patient story videos on Spine-Health that talk about Arthritis. Search on Patient stories
Protect anonymity
We strongly suggest that members do not include their email addresses. Once that is published , your email address is available to anyone on the internet , including hackers.

All discussions and comments that contain an external URL will be automatically moved to the spam queue. No external URL pointing to a medical web site is permitted. Forum rules also indicate that you need prior moderator approval. If you are going to post an external URL, contact one of the moderators to get their approval.
Attention New Members
Your initial discussion or comment automatically is sent to a moderator's approval queue before it can be published.
There are no medical professionals on this forum side of the site. Therefore, no one is capable or permitted to provide any type of medical advice.
This includes any analysis, interpretation, or advice based on any diagnostic test


Christina69CChristina69 Posts: 534
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:38 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
I'm three weeks from my lumbar fusion surgery and I have aa couple places on my incision where there's a stitch sticking straight out, one is really touchy but the incision itself looks fine. Should I pull on these or cut them off at skin level or should i just wait and let the surgeon deal with it?



  • It is fairly common to "spit a stitch" from your incision. The best thing to do is keep it clean and covered until your surgeon can remove it. Since it doesn't take long to do this, many surgeons will have you stop by between patients on clinic days. I recommend giving the office a call and letting them know what is happening.

  • The internal stitches working their way out is fairly common, esp. if Vicryl (an absorbable suture) is used. Your body first breaks it into smaller pieces - at which point it can be recognized as a foreign body and your body literally tries to "spit" it out, that's why its called "Vicryl spitting". Do NOT pull the stitch out, just it case the knot is still holding dermis together underneath; but it IS OK to cut the part sticking out with a cuticle scissor. Whatever is not serving a purpose will eventually work its way out. Also, it is not uncommon when this happens that it looks like there is a "pimple" around the stitch - this is not a "true infection" it is just neutrophils (type of white blood cell) again reacting to the suture like a foreign body. I would keep the area covered with a antibiotic like Polysporin and a small bandage though.
  • I wish I had seen your post like 7 weeks ago! I *did* pull some of those suckers out, got a small infection that cleared up fast. I did tell my surgeon I did this, and yes I got a tongue lashing for it! As he told me, "Don't do that, your body will expel it as foreign matter on its own. With you forcing it, you can cause all manner of problems, not the least of which is infection of the site!!" Needless to say, I behaved after that!! Good post Optimist!!!

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • Im leaving them alone.


  • Long ago I had a gynecological procedure done that involved going in through my navel. A week or so later, I had some of that "fishing line" poking out and tried to give it a tug. I passed out! Didn't realize quite how sensitive my navel was!! At any rate, I too covered it with a little gauze pad till my doc could deal with it. I never pull on stitches now! :tongue:" alt=":tongue:" height="20" />

    3 level spinal fusion, L3/4, L4/5, L5/S1, November 2008. Stiff, but I can walk.
Sign In or Register to comment.