Your doctor will tell you when to have your stitches or staples removed, usually in 7 to 14 days. How long you'll be told to wait will depend on things like where the wound is located, how big and how deep the wound is, and what your general health is like. Do not remove the stitches on your own.
Stitches on the face are usually removed within a week. But stitches and staples on other areas of the body, such as on the back or belly or over a joint, may need to stay in place longer, often a week or two. Be sure to follow your doctor's instructions.
It usually doesn't hurt when the doctor removes the stitches or staples. You may feel a tug as each stitch or staple is removed.
Depending on the type and location of the cut, you will have a scar. Scars usually fade over time. Keep the area clean, but you won't need a bandage.
Call your doctor or nurse call line now or seek immediate medical care if:
Watch closely for changes in your health, and be sure to contact your doctor or nurse call line if:
Follow-up care is a key part of your treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor or nurse call line if you do not get better as expected. It's also a good idea to keep a list of the medicines you take.
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Current as of: March 20, 2017
Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine
& Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine & Martin J. Gabica, MD - Family Medicine
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