Sutures vs Stitches: What Are the Differences?

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What’s the difference between sutures vs stitches? Although the terms are often used, these two things have very distinct differences.

Stitches are an integral part of modern medicine. They’re often used when we don’t even notice them, such as during a laceration suture. Sutures is a term often confused for stitches.

If you don’t know the difference between stitches and sutures, don’t worry. In this article, we’ll go over the differences between stitches and sutures, so you can be sure you’re using them in the future.

Keep reading!

What are Sutures?

Sutures are to close deep lacerations in the tissues below the skin. Stitches are for close lacerations in the skin itself. There are many types of sutures, but the two most common are absorbable and non-absorbable.

Absorbable Sutures

Absorbable sutures are a type of sutures made from materials that are down by the body. It is for internal surgeries where the sutures do not need removal.

Non-Absorbable Sutures

Non-absorbable sutures are for wound closure in areas that are under high tension. This is such as the abdomen. Non-absorbable sutures use materials that the body cannot break down. This needs removal by a doctor.

For your future reference, check these common mistakes about using surgical sutures. With this, you’ll know what to avoid in some cases.

What are Stitches?

Stitches are usually used for superficial wounds that are not deep enough to need sutures. They are also used for lacerations, or cuts, on the skin.

Stitches are more often used by general practitioners to close smaller wounds.

Key Differences

Sutures and stitches are both types of wound closure techniques. The main difference between sutures and stitches is that sutures compose materials that dissolve over time but stitches are not.

This means that sutures will fall out on their own. Stitches will need removal by a medical professional. Sutures are also generally less painful to remove than stitches.

The Pros and Cons of Sutures

Sutures are more precise and easier to control. They also result in less scarring and are less likely to cause infection. Sutures are also generally less painful to remove.

Yet, they are more expensive and need more time to put in place.

The Pros and Cons of Stitches

Stitches are less expensive and done quicker. They are also less likely to cause nerve damage. But, they can be less precise and may result in more scarring.

Stitches are usually left in for a week or two before it is removed.

Learn to Differentiate Sutures vs Stitches Starting Today

Overall, there are a few key differences between sutures vs stitches. Sutures are typically used for deep lacerations, while stitches are meant for shallower cuts.

Sutures are also stronger and more flexible than stitches, so they are less likely to break or tear. But, sutures dissolve on their own over time, while stitches must be removed by a medical professional.

So, if you have a deep cut, it is best to see a doctor to make sure you are getting the appropriate medical treatment right away!

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