Spontaneous complete migration of suture material after subcuticular continuous suture in cesarean section: A case report

Ki Jin Ryu, Ki Hoon Ahn, Soon Cheol Hong

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1 Citation (Scopus)


Background: Skin closure during cesarean section is often performed with subcuticular running sutures by using a nonabsorbable suture material. However, this material has the risk of incomplete removal after wound healing and can migrate to other sites in rare cases. Case presentation: A 34-year-old Korean woman who had undergone a cesarean section 5 months prior presented with a fine, blue object visible through the skin on her left lower abdomen. No pain or any other signs of inflammation were observed. The foreign body was revealed to be 10-cm-long suture material that had migrated laterally approximately 15 cm in intradermal layer during the previous 5 months, without tangling of the entire length. Conclusions: Small remnants of suture materials in the subcutaneous tissue are known to migrate toward the superficial layer. The mechanism of these migrations is often thought to be related to foreign body immune reaction or the force generated in wound contracture. Long-distance migration of relatively long suture materials, as in the present case, has not been reported yet. Such a steady tension in a uniform direction within a human tissue layer cannot be explained clearly by the previously described mechanisms. That migration might have occurred in superficial subcutaneous tissue layers through the horizontal flow or movement of those layers during the recovery process that have not been revealed yet.

Original languageEnglish
Article number103
JournalBMC Surgery
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2014

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2014 Aoki et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.


  • Cesarean section
  • Subcuticular suture
  • Suture material migration
  • Wound recovery

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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