How Is Surgical Glue Removed?

Thierry Dosogne/Stone/Getty Images

Surgical glue eventually flakes off on its own several days following surgery. You must care for your surgical wound after the procedure per your doctor’s instructions.

  1. Leave the incision site alone

    Do not pull the surgical glue covering the incision, and do not scratch at the incision site if it itches. Doctors can prescribe anti-itch medication to soothe a persistent itch. Scratching at your surgical glue makes it peel off faster and may interfere with the healing process.

  2. Keep the wound away from sunlight

    Avoid direct sunlight with a skin adhesive. Incisions exposed to sunlight become red and painful, and a doctor cannot access the incision site with surgical glue on top of it. Redness and swelling due to sunburn at the incision site may prevent the wound from healing properly.

  3. Do not bathe the wound

    Avoid immersing incision site in water for several days because water can make surgical glue come off faster. Gently wash the site twice per day with soapy water. Sweat poses the same problem to your surgical glue, so rest and remain comfortable. Avoid putting lotions or ointments on top of surgical glue because these substances may lessen its adhesive properties.

  4. Wait for the glue to fall off

    Your incision covering disappears on its own after five to 10 days when the glue wears off and flakes away in small patches. Until then, doctors recommend leaving surgical glue alone as much as possible.