The American Journal of Surgery Volume 189, Issue 3 , March 2005, Pages 315-318

The American Journal of Surgery Volume 189, Issue 3 , March 2005, Pages 315-318

Reinforcement of subcuticular continuous suture closure with surgical adhesive strips and gum mastic: Is there any additional strength provided? 

Presented at the 47th Annual Meeting of the Midwest Surgical Association, Mackinac Island, Michigan, August 15 18, 2004 

Reha Yavuzer M.D.a, , Christopher Kelly M.D.b, Noreen Durrani M.D.a, Vijay Mittal M.D.a, Ian T. Jackson M.D.b and Stephen Remine M.D.a 


a Department of Surgery, Providence Hospital and Medical Centers, Southfield, MI, USA

b Institute for Craniofacial and Reconstructive Surgery, 16001 W. Nine Mile Rd.3rd Floor Fisher Center, Southfield, MI 48075, USA 


Received 14 September 2004; revised 19 November 2004. Available online 23 March 2005. 




This study aimed to compare the burst strength of suture closure versus the use of suture and strip together. 


On cadavers, 50 skin incisions were closed as follows: group 1 subcuticular continuous suture; group 2 same suturing with placement of strips; group 3 same as group 2 except gum mastic was applied prior to strips; group 4 strips alone; and group 5 strips with gum mastic application. The separation forces were measured using a tensilometer. 


The mean separation forces were as follows: group 1, 14.17 kg; group 2, 14.37 kg; group 3, 15.39 kg; group 4, 1.52 kg; and group 5, 3.85 kg. There were no statistically significant differences between groups 1, 2, and 3. When compared with group 4, group 5 required markedly more force to separate the wound. 


Strip reinforcement with/without gum mastic did not provide any additional strength when sutures were used. Gum mastic increased the adherence of strips and this was important when strips were the only means of wound closure.