Sutures: Different Types of Suture Techniques

Suture is a device used to close up the opening. However, stitching is the technique used. Sutures are the threads or strands used to close a wound. “Stitches” (stitching) refers to the actual process of closing the wound.


Type of suture or stitching greatly depends on the location of the lesion, skin thickness in the particular area, the tension on the wound. However, One must be thorough with basic skills for suturing like suture material, needle size, and knot tying.


There are multiple suturing techniques:

1. Simple Interrupted Suture: This is the standard benchmark suture used for closure and epidermal approximation. It may be used alone in small wounds under minimal to no tension

2. Continuous Suture: Continuous sutures are one with a series of stitches but they are not individually knotted. They are typically used when the wound is in the visible region of the body and thus the stitches will not be readily apparent. Some of the medical procedures that make use of continuous sutures include: The repair of vaginal tearing after the childbirth and Some plastic surgery operations like face or brow lift

3. Vertical Mattress Suture: The vertical mattress stitch is most commonly used in anatomic locations which tend to invert, such as the posterior aspect of the neck, and sites of greater skin laxity such as the closure of lax skin after removing a dermoid cyst

4. Horizontal Mattress Suture: The horizontal mattress suture is useful for wounds under high tension because it provides strength and wound eversion. This suture may also be used as a stay stitch for temporary approximation of wound edges, allowing placement of simple interrupted or subcuticular stitches.


Mastering suturing, requires tremendous practice. It is vital that one is aware of which suture & which suturing technique will be appropriate in any particular situation. 

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