Skip to content
My WebMD Sign In, Sign Up

First Aid & Emergencies

Font Size

Puncture Wounds: Stitches, Staples, and Skin Adhesives - Topic Overview

Puncture wounds are less likely than cuts to be stitched, stapled, or have a skin adhesive applied because:

  • Puncture wounds tend to be smaller than cuts and usually do not heal better or scar less when stitched.
  • Puncture wounds tend to be deeper, narrower, and harder to clean than cuts. Sealing bacteria into a wound when it is stitched increases the risk of infection.
  • If a puncture wound becomes infected, the wound usually drains better and heals faster when it is not stitched.

Puncture wounds may be stitched if the cosmetic appearance of the resulting scar will be greatly improved or if stitching is needed to restore function to an injured deep structure, such as a tendon or ligament.

Recommended Related to First Aid

Vomiting (Children)

The child is vomiting and may have swallowed something poisonous.

Read the Vomiting (Children) article > >

If you think you may need your wound closed by a health professional, see Are Stitches, Staples, or Skin Adhesives Necessary?

1

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: June 06, 2012
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
Next Article:

Puncture Wounds: Stitches, Staples, and Skin Adhesives Topics

Today on WebMD

Antibiotic on hand
Slideshow
3d scan of fractured skull
Slideshow
 
Father putting ointment on boy's face
Slideshow
Person taking food from oven
Q&A
 
sniffling child
Slideshow
wound care true or false
Slideshow
 
caring for wounds
Slideshow
Harvest mite
Slideshow
 

WebMD the app

Get first aid information. Whenever. Wherever... with your iPhone, iPad or Android.

Find Out More