Medical questions & health advice by board certified doctors

"Had back surgery Wednesday September 11 and the glue is coming off. Is that normal? "

ZocdocAnswersHad back surgery Wednesday September 11 and the glue is coming off. Is that normal?


The glue holding the incision is peeling off.


After surgery, your incision will change in appearance over time and the mechanism of closure, glue or steristrips (small tape), may start to come off. If you have any concerns about your wound's closure or its appearance, you should make an appointment to see your surgeon. When you see the surgeon, you can discuss the following information. A surgical incision is often closed with a layer of dissolvable sutures (stitches) that hold the wound edges together as the skin heals. These sutures do not need to be removed. In addition to the sutures, some surgeon apply a "glue", which can be marketed under many different brand names. The glue holds the wound edges together while natural healing occurs underneath and makes the wound waterproof. Most of the time, the glue peels off on its own in 5-10 days, but the duration is shorter or longer in some people. If you notice a change in your incision, it must be evaluated by a doctor, especially if the wound appears more open than it was before. Signs of a wound infection would be redness or warmth at the edges, cloudy yellow drainage from the wound, or increased pain/swelling at the site. While the glue coming off of your incision may be normal, there is no way to tell for sure without your being seen by a physician.

Need more info?

See a surgeon today

Zocdoc Answers is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor (in the United States) 911 immediately. Always seek the advice of your doctor before starting or changing treatment. Medical professionals who provide responses to health-related questions are intended third party beneficiaries with certain rights under Zocdoc’s Terms of Service.