The length of time that stitches should be left in depends on the location of the laceration and how much stress it receives, according to MedicineNet.com. A laceration on the knee requires that stitches stay in place longer than on the thigh because the knee stresses the skin by bending.Continue Reading
Stitches form a loop surrounding the laceration that causes the wound to close when pulled tight, the site notes. Scars start to form around the stitches within seven to eight days. Stitches on the face usually are removed within five days because the region has a healthy blood supply and healing occurs more quickly.
Elsewhere on the body, a doctor may wait seven to 10 days before removing stitches. This is especially true if scarring is not an issue or if there is a concern that the wound is under stress, such as on a joint.Learn more about Wounds & Bruises
There are various signs to look for that indicate when stitches are infected, including yellow or green discharge from the wound, changes in the size of the incision, redness around the stitches, hardening of the surrounding area and excessive bleeding, according to WebMD. Stitches are one of the most common methods for closing a wound.Full Answer >
Removing stitches is not a difficult process, but it is recommended that it is done in a doctor's office, according to WebMD. A doctor can check to ensure that the wound is properly healed and ready for the removal of the stitches and give the patient advice and information to minimize scarring at the site.Full Answer >
WebMD recommends that a cut receive stitches if it is more than 0.25 inch deep, has jagged edges or gapes open. Any wound that extends past the skin and into deeper tissue may require stitches in order to aid in healing and to prevent infection.Full Answer >
If it is certain that a wound requires stitches, WebMD recommends that the wound not remain open for longer than six to eight hours after the injury occurs. In rarer cases, a wound may be left open for 24 hours or not stitched at all so that adequate cleaning and antibiotic treatment can be performed initially to prevent infection. Clean cuts may be able to wait 12 to 24 hours.Full Answer >