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April 1978

Use of Synthetic Absorbable Sutures for Abdominal and Chest Wound Closure: Experience With 650 Consecutive Cases

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Surgery, University of California School of Medicine at San Francisco General Hospital. Dr Murray is in private practice in Napa, Calif.

Arch Surg. 1978;113(4):477-480. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1978.01370160135023

• The advent of synthetic collagen sutures (polyglycolic acid and polyglactin 910) has provided a new dimension in surgical suturing. However, surgeons in general have not yet taken full advantage of the potential that this new material offers.

Associated evisceration and wound dehiscence rates as well as the incidence rate of wound infection were assessed since these represent standards by which the suture material can be evaluated. In an entire series of 650 cases, there has been one case of wound dehiscence with evisceration. The incidence of infection has been less than 1%, which is comparable to previous experience with interrupted, nonabsorbable sutures. The time required for closure using the new material has been approximately one third of that associated with the use of conventional interrupted closure sutures. This implies a substantial cost reduction for the patient.

As a result of this experience, the synthetic absorbable sutures seem to represent the material of choice for routine abdominal or chest wound closure.

(Arch Surg 113:477-480, 1978)

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