How is the horizontal mattress suture placed?

Updated: Mar 05, 2020
  • Author: Desiree Ratner, MD; Chief Editor: Dirk M Elston, MD  more...
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A horizontal mattress suture is placed by entering the skin 5 mm to 1 cm from the wound edge. The suture is passed deep in the dermis to the opposite side of the suture line and exits the skin equidistant from the wound edge (in effect, a deep simple interrupted stitch). The needle reenters the skin on the same side of the suture line 5 mm to 1 cm lateral of the exit point. The stitch is passed deep to the opposite side of the wound, where it exits the skin; the knot is then tied (see the image below).

Horizontal mattress suture. Horizontal mattress suture.

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