Torn stitches 🙈

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Would I know if I've torn my stitches? My surgeon mentioned I wouldn't always know if I've done damage 😁 But surely it would hurt if I popped a stitch?

I stupidly picked up my 3 year old without thinking, I'm 10 days post op and now paranoid I've done some damage, I've already had an infection which has popped one of the external stitches 🙈 It didn't hurt when I picked her up but I know feel weird.

Tia x

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17 Replies

  • Posted

    Your consultant is correct you may not know you've popped a stitch but it's not easy to do because the sutures used are strong. The problem you have though is that you have unfortunately had an infection that can weaken the tissues around the sutures. You are going to have to be so cautious because for the first couple of weeks as you know you shouldn't lift anything heavier than a kettle with enough water to make 1 cup of tea. 
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    • Posted

      is there anyway of checking for damage, I feel such a fool and completely paranoid, the anxiety is driving me mad.

      I wasn't told about the one cup of tea example, my surgeon said not to lift more than 5-7kg, that's a big difference.

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    • Posted

      The kettle weight is something most ladies are told and if you look at the Pinned Post on the Genitourinary home page you'll find lots of useful advice. 5-7kgs is very heavy for the first couple of weeks to be honest but I never overrule a consultant. The only way of checking is you asking your consultant to examine you. A GP may do so but it depends how much urogynaecology knowledge he/she has because unless they've undertaken specialist training after qualifying then chances are they won't be the best person to ask. You could check on your surgery website.
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    • Posted

      Thanks for your replies, much appreciated, I had planned to call tomorrow to arrange an assessment as my external stitch popped Saturday and I would like to understand if it will be closed once I have finished my course of anti b's. The dr I saw at the weekend said they wouldn't at the moment as it will trap the infection, my consultant was not on call so I've not had any guidance from him.

      Also is it strange I've only been signed off work for four weeks, reading some of the threads on here four weeks seems like quite a short amount of time?

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    • Posted

      I think it's routine to give a sick note for 4 weeks initially but it's expected your GP will extend that. You haven't said what repair you had because that makes a difference as well.
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    • Posted

      A posterior repair takes longer to heal than an anterior repair usually so you'll need to be off work at least 8 weeks (absolute minimum) depending on your job but ideally 12 weeks to give yourself time to heal and to get your strength back. Patience is the most important thing following this operation as other ladies will confirm.
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    • Posted

      I sit at a desk all day so it's not strenuous, I've not been told to go to my gp for an extension and my next consultant review is not for 3 months (although I want to see him in the next couple of weeks given the issues I've had). This is all a bit confusing, does age have much to do with recover time? Im early 30's
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    • Posted

      Sitting at a desk although not strenuous can be uncomfortable for quite some time so take that into consideration when you think about going back to work. You'll need time to walk around. Age does affect healing because older women are usually menopausal and their pelvic floor muscles are not in such a good condition as the younger ladies. Also they tend to suffer from vaginal atrophy, all this is because of the reduction in female hormones. Treatment is available though such as HRT. Younger women such as yourself tend not to rest as much and have other responsibilities like you, young children and the temptation to do more before it's advisable but the longer you rest for the more chance your repair will be successful.
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    • Posted

      That is of course true, I'd not thought of that, I possibly won't be able to drive anyhow so may work from home and have a phased return.

      Understood re rest, and as you appreciate not easy with two young children (3 and 1) but I'm trying my best. Thanks for all your advice, very much appreciated 🙂

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    • Posted

      They say you shouldn't drive until 6 weeks post op unless your consultant tells you it's ok to drive before then but it's still best to check with your insurance company. It's all to do with the ability to do an emergency stop, it can be hard to do before 6 weeks because the pelvic floor hasn't healed sufficiently. There is a test you can do to see if you can perform the emergency stop and I've mentioned this before on the forum but don't try it yet. Stamp your foot hard on a solid floor, if you can do it (both feet) with pain or discomfort then it's ok to drive. I understand about resting with young children, try and rope friends and family in to help you.
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    • Posted

      should say without pain or discomfort.....apologies.
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    • Posted

      Ha I knew what you meant. When I asked about driving my consultant said its up to me and obviously inline with insurance company's guidelines but suspected I would be OK to drive in 3 weeks. I'm very awear I'm behind the wheel of a killing machine so am not going to take risks.

      It's very confusing reading the literature on the web as it all varies, hard to know what level of activity is ok, a lot of the literature mentions walking will aid recovery but everyone's view on what a short walk is for example is different 😁. I understand doing as little as possible is best but in reality that's not always possible.

      For me, Monday to Friday are fine, the children are at nursery all day so it's easy to rest, it's weekend that are hard, im up and down from the floor a lot playing with them as they are too young to understand, aside from my my mistake yesterday I'm not lifting them at all or bathing them, just reading bedtime stories and playing games on the floor.

      Also at 11 days post op I'm not suffering with reduced energy levels now (although doing a lot less than I do ordinarily) and I don't really have any pain, just slight discomfort and twinges where my vaginal stitches are...too easy to think I'm more able to do things that I shouldn't be!

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    • Posted

      I think if you can rest for the first 2-3 weeks then that gives the sutures time to heal but don't be alarmed that in about 4-5 weeks you start to feel more uncomfortable, that's because the sutures start to tighten and that's something a lot of ladies on this forum report. Personally I don't think anyone following pelvic floor surgery is ok to drive after 3 weeks but you must check with your insurance company. 
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    • Posted

      Going back to see my consultant this afternoon, switched my care to private, it's amazing how they can all of a sudden find an appointment 😂 I want to understand what damage the infection has caused and if he'll close my popped stitch...and if my stupidity yesterday has caused further damage!
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    • Posted

      Oh yes the ££££ signs make a huge difference. Don't get too hung up on what happened yesterday because I'm sure the one episode won't have caused any damage, I'm pleased you will get some reassurance this afternoon.
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    • Posted

      So I thought I'd give you a quick update...saw the consultant yesterday and feel like a huge weight has been lifted off my shoulders, he is happy with my progress and no damage has been done, my torn stitches will close on their own and my infection was probably caused by my body rejecting the biodesign used to support my prolapse, with the torn stitches due to the buildup of fluid and it needing to escape. I mentioned my fear of over doing it as I feel ok now the infection is sorted (no tiredness and only slight discomfort) and he just said to listen to my body, I'm young so will naturally heal and recover quicker, lifting my children is fine even at this stage (12 days post op) as its a normal activity for me in that my body is used to it, there has apparently been recent research that confirmed coughing, sneezing and constipation are the main concerns for failure as this puts more pressure on your pelvis than lifting. I will still avoid lifting my children and take it easy resting as much as I can but I feel great and so far this op has been life changing for me!
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