Can I sue a doctor for not taking out non-dissolvable stitches?

UPDATED: Apr 13, 2012

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Can I sue a doctor for not taking out non-dissolvable stitches?

I had a C-section and I went back to have my stitches removed. The doctor pulled and pulled on them and couldn’t get them out so she told me that they would dissolve up and she left them in. A week later I had to go back to the doctor because a small place had came open and was bleeding. I had to make several trips back to the doctors office and the cut had to be packed for weeks.

Asked on April 13, 2012 under Malpractice Law, Kentucky


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

It is not necessarily the case that it is malpractice to use non-dissolvable stitches. Malpractice is the renderering of medical care which fails to meet current generally accepted standards for such condition or treatment; if the use of nondissolvable stiches is, as I believe, acceptable, then there likely was no malpractice committed in the choice of stitching.

It's possible there was malpractice in the failure to properly remove the stitches. However, while you may wish to speak with a malpractice attorney about whether you might have a viable cause of action in this regard, bear in mind that malpractice cases can among the most expensive ones to bring, due to the necessity of having a medical expert witness. Since you can only recover your out-of-pocket or unreimbursed medical costs, lost wages (if any), plus possibly an amount consumensurate with the duration and severity of pain and disability, it may well be that you could not recover enough to make a malpractice case viable.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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