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Safety and Injuries > Skin Glue Care

Skin Glue Care

Your child's wound has been treated with skin glue. This skin glue holds the wound edges together so that it can heal. The skin glue dries and forms a clear purplish film covering the wound.

This will usually stay in place for 3 to 7 days. Then it will peel off. There will be no need to return to remove this skin glue. Once the glue is off, protect the area from re-injury.If the area breaks open, it is not advised to close again with glue, stitches, or staples because of infection risks.

Check the wound/cut every day for signs of infection:

  • increased swelling to area
  • increased redness to area
  • increased pain or soreness
  • drainage from wound area (yellow or green in color)
  • red streaks in the skin around the wound
  • wound area is warm/hot to touch
  • wound edges reopen or separate
  • fever greater than 101.5°F. (38.6°C.)

Keep the wound/cut dry and protected.

  • Protect your child's wound from being injured again until the skin has had time to heal.
  • Do not get the wound wet for at least 48 hours (or 2 days). This may cause the glue to come off early. After 2 days, your child may bathe or shower briefly. Do not soak the wound area. Gently dry the area by touching it with a soft towel. Do not rub or pat the area.
  • Do not allow your child to scratch, rub or pick at the skin glue film. This may loosen it before the wound is completely healed. The wound edges could reopen or separate, causing the wound not to heal properly.
  • Protect the wound from prolonged exposure to the sunlight or tanning lamps while the skin glue film is in place.
  • Do not apply any medications, lotions or other liquids or ointments to your child's wound while the skin glue film is in place. This may loosen the skin glue film before the wound is healed.
  • Do not cover the area with a Band-Aid or any other dressing.
  • When the glue comes off, you can start applying Vitamin E oil or Mederma to the area to lessen the scarring.
  • It is important to protect the area from sunlight for the next several months, as new scars will be more noticeable if sun-exposed. Sunscreen, clothing and hats can protect the area.

Call for an appointment if:

  • Your child's wound has any signs of infection (see above).
  • The wound edges reopen or separate.
  • The wound breaks open and bleeds.
  • Your child develops a rash around the skin glue film.
  • You have any questions or concerns about the skin glue film or your child’s wound.

This page adapted from Children's Mercy Care Cards.

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