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Medical questions & health advice by licensed doctors

"Why do my stitches still hurt?"


Had to have my appendix removed almost a year ago and the stitches still itch! Is this okay? Should I go back to the doctor and have them do something to the stitches so they stop itching?


When ever you have any surgical incision, even for the most minor procedure, this usually does involve the cutting of some small nerve endings running in the skin under where the incision is made. Therefore, as the incision is healing, it is often common to experience some strange sensations, such as numbness, burning, or itching over the area. Usually, these symptom will go away slowly over time, but sometimes they may persist for quite a while.

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If you have not talked to your primary care doctor about this issue, you should do so. They can take a quick look at the scar to make sure everything has healed up well. Sometimes, as an alternative explanation, the scar tissue at the site of the operation may continue to grow and pile up. This is called a keloid, and it can be quite itchy or otherwise uncomfortable. Also, sometimes the scar tissue may become dried out, and it may need to be moisturized to keep the itching down. Talk to your doctor about this concern, and I am sure they will be able to give you helpful advice.

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