Why does your skin itch after surgery?


Quick Answer

Skin itches after surgery because the healing process activates specialized skin nerve fibers that communicate to the spinal cord that there is an itch in the area, explains Advanced Tissue. These nerve fibers are usually activated by exterior skin irritants called mechanical stress.

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Full Answer

When surgery wounds heal, the wound margins slowly move towards each other. This slow progression mimics the mechanical stress response and activates the itching sensation, writes Advanced Tissue.

While it is tempting to scratch itchy surgery wounds, doctors strongly recommend fighting the urge, cautions Advanced Tissue. Scratching an open wound may lead to infection, slow healing and even scarring.

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