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September 3, 1997

Tissue Adhesives for Laceration Closure

Author Affiliations

University Hospital and Medical Center Stony Brook, NY
Hospital of University of Pennsylvania Philadelphia

JAMA. 1997;278(9):703. doi:10.1001/jama.1997.03550090027023

To the Editor.  —Dr Quinn and colleagues1 have provided a timely and well-performed study demonstrating the advantages of wound closure with octylcyanoacrylate adhesives. Although we too are enthusiastic about the use of newer tissue adhesives,2 it is important for physicians to be aware that this new wound closure device will not completely replace sutures. It is our fear that widespread use of tissue adhesives may result in inappropriate wound selection and care. Based on characteristics of lacerations enrolled in our 5500 patient emergency department (ED) wound registry and the wound characteristics amenable to closure with tissue adhesives, we estimate that 30% to 40% of lacerations treated in the ED might be amenable to such closure (unpublished data, May 1997). In addition, we are concerned that practitioners at clinics and other venues who are less experienced in wound closure techniques might elect to use adhesives, because these agents are