Teach yourself to suture for under a tenner
Suturing is one of the basic surgical skills that medical students can learn. Iain Varley and Duncan Taylor show you a cost effective method to get you up to speed. Take one banana …
- By: Iain Varley, Duncan Taylor
Suturing is useful not only in surgery but in other specialties as well. Whether it's suturing a central line in place or stitching up a laceration, it's a skill you should practise before you need to use it. Many universities now have clinical skills laboratories, where equipment is available to learn on, but it's something you can also do at home. Here we describe how to teach yourself to suture using basic equipment which is readily available, and a banana (fig 1).
Getting hold of the basic equipment is easy. Have a word with your local emergency department to see if they can spare a disposable suture set. If you can't get hold of one from the hospital, surgical instruments are readily available by mail order, many costing less than £1 ($1.8; €1.5) each.
Sutures are more expensive, but if you hang around theatres you will find that new packets