Ovarian Cysts Community
Surgical Staples Left In
About This Community:

This patient support community is for discussions relating to ovarian cysts.

Font Size:
A
A
A
Background:
Blank
Blank
Blank
Blank Blank

Surgical Staples Left In

This may be a strange question,  but I'm wondering if anyone has had any of their surgical staples accidently left in??  I had surgery on Feb 5th (TAH/BSO) for a borderline complex cyst, and all of my staples were removed 10 days later (or so I thought).  They began the surgery as a laparoscopy, so an incision was made right into my belly button. When they had to switch to a laparotomy, the gyn/oncoloist basically just started at where the umbilical incision was, and lengthened it.  My recovery has been completely uneventful; no problems at all, and certainly easier than I had anticipated.  For the past few weeks though, the area around my belly button has been VERY itchy. I had expected some itchiness, so figured it was normal. I also noticed sort of a "pinching" feeling if I rubbed against anything.  This evening, I saw a tiny bit of dried blood inside my belly button. I thought perhaps it was from all the scratching I was doing. But, when I grabbed a mirror for a closer look, I discovered that 2 or 3 surgical staples were still there!! I am a bit full-figured, so I admit that staples inside my belly button wouldn't be obvious. But since I've been back to the doctors twice now for follow-ups and to have my incision checked, I can't believe no one noticed .

Of course, my doctors office was closed by the time I called, so I have to wait till tomorrow to talk to them.  Obviously, the staples need to come out NOW, and of course I suspect it is probably going to hurt like heck to have them taken out some 8 weeks after the surgery.   Has anyone had anything like this happen??? I'm wondering what sort of problems could have happened if I hadn't discovered them and they stayed there for even longer??!!  
Related Discussions
35 Comments Post a Comment
Blank
167426_tn?1254089835
Might not hurt too bad, but if some skin has managed to grow over them then it will be slightly unpleasant.  You will have to do the hydogen peroxide thing for a few days, and maybe some neo sporin. Good thing you found them , because in time the skin would have covered them and they would be embedded. There will probably be some drainage also for a few days.  I could tell you horror stories about things that get "missed" during and after surgery. You would have set off the alarms  at an airport.  Most clips are removed in 10 days, if left longer they can start an abcess (abscess). But you would have known that.  Good treasure hunting there Cagney.
Blank
Avatar_n_tn
Actually, I flew to California & back just a couple of weeks ago, and they didn't set off any alarms :-)  Good thing they didn't, that would have been some interesting search by TSA to find them in my navel :-)

It doesn't look like there's any infection going on yet,  but it does look a bit irritated. I can see one of the staples clearly, cause it's closer to the outide rim of my navel, and I can feel another one way inside if I stick my finger all the way in. I think there's a 3rd in between those 2,  but can't tell for certain.

I'm glad I did find them now.  I'm not scheduled to see the onc. again until the end of May. Who knows what might have happened with them between now & then!  Hopefully it won't hurt too much. I think I'm more annoyed and ticked off than anything.  Surely they counted how many staples they put in, you'd think they'd count how many they removed just to be certain they got them all!  I realize all kinds of things are accidently left inside during surgery more than we'd care to think about,  so a couple of staples aren't nearly as serious. But, things had gone so smoothly with the surgery & recovery, I'm annoyed that this had to happen, & wasn't caught by the doctor or her physician's asst the last two times they've examined me. But, I know lots of other folks on here have to deal with much worse than this, so I should just suck it up and go get them out :-)
Blank
Avatar_n_tn
If I'm you, I will take a close pictures of the situation, and you may need to sue the doctor. Well, you never know, if you developing infections or who knows... Sue
Blank
Avatar_n_tn
Well, I had the "forgotten" staples removed today. There were 2 of them in my navel. The one she got fairly easily, but the other was hard to get to.  To be honest, it really didn't hurt at all. Everyone was very apologetic, and somewhat embarrassed.  I'm just glad that's done, and if that's the worst thing that happens from my surgery & recovery, I'll feel thankful.  I haven't had any of the problems so many others have had after this surgery, so all in all I feel very lucky that I caught it at stage 1A, and that the only "complication" was a couple of staples left in for several weeks.
Blank
Avatar_f_tn
I just found out that I have 9 internal staples that we left there from my appendectomy surgery almost 3 years ago. my chiropractor found them when looking at an x-ray from when I hurt my back this past month. I am lost for what to do and wonder if doctors would ever have a reason to leave those in on purpose. I am researching to see what I can find before I jump the gun and start talking about malpractice...any thoughts?
Blank
Avatar_n_tn
I had no further problems after my "forgotten" staples were removed, and honestly never thought much of it.  In the big scheme of things,  I felt fortunate that my OVCA was caught so early,  so a couple of staples left in awhile didn't seem worth getting upset over.  Of course,  mine were external staples not internal ones.  If I were you, I think my first step would be to get a copy of the surgery report from the hospital where your surgery was done.  You'll have to fill out a release form,  but should have no problem getting it. If there were staples put in for a valid medical reason, the report will likely say something about that.  If the surgery report doesn't explain the staples, then I'd contact the doctor who did the surgery , let him know what was found on your x-ray,  and see what the doctor has to say.  I honestly don't know if there might be a good reason they were left there,  but I'd at least want to see what the doctor says before I'd go thinking malpractice. Nine staples seems like a few too many to have been left in just by accident,  so see what your report says, then contact the surgeon if need be.   Let us know what you find out, as I'm curious now as tr the reason they're there .
Blank
167426_tn?1254089835
Any internal staples were  put there for a reason,  if they don't hurt now they probably never will.  When staples are placed inside it is to hold something together, they would have left your wound open if they meant to remove them after a certain healing time.  Did your appendix rupture?   I have seen times when a skin flap has to be stapled in place to contain and strengthen the intestine.  A mesh covering is also sometimes used to seal the "hole" where the appendix is removed from. You cannot just remove an appendix without repairing the hole because the bowel contents would leak out into the abdomen.  I do not think you have a thing to worry about.
Blank
Avatar_f_tn
Well I had cervical cancer in 2004 in that same year I had to go back in to save my life.What happen was I got infection (bad), I lost my right overy,appendex,nicked bladder,the infection was killing me.After a year I got two tents , ct done , blood thiner, water bills.Now I ended up with lymphatic.,swelling of my left leg.Durring all that I found out I have staples , because this doctor nicked me in side.The bad thing that got me mad was the doctor told me it was my own fault.I dont see how.I went into this doctor office the whole mo. after surgey not once did this doctor see me.It was the office people.(not good).Now Im very thankful that I got a great doctor that took on my case.
Have to wait until the 1st of the year to ask if the staples can be removed an stents be put into place.
All I now is that Im stick of being sick, but not giving up on getting better.
Blank
Avatar_f_tn
The surgical staples are typically benign, and do not cause problems.  I know, because I went into my surgery to remove a large mass/ovary/fallopian tube with the full knowledge that two staples would be left inside my abdomen.

The blood vessel that supplies the ovary branches off from the large, main blood vessel that  extends down through the abdomen  to supply  the legs .   To prevent bleeding, possible hemorhaging, shock, or even death, the surgeon placed two staples as well as stitches (also left in place) on the blood vessel,  to stop  the blood flow in the vessel, before removing the ovary.  

I was not concerned about this use as a member of my family also has staples and metal thread used to repair an abdominal condition, and has suffered no ill effects in the 40 years these have been in place.
Blank
Avatar_n_tn
a friends son had surgery and had staples used in corrective surgery for hirshsprungs desease, he has been bleeding rectally for months since the surgery, recently they found an open sharp staple in his bowel, mm,s away is an ulcer, anyone with information on weather this could cause the ulcer would be greatly appreciated.
Blank
Avatar_n_tn
RECENTLY I HAD A RADICAL HYSTERECTOMY IN DECEMBER 2007.  I FOLLOWED UP WITH CHEMO AND RADIATION.  DURING THE LAST TWO WEEKS OF MY TREATMENT A STAPLE, WHICH I WAS TOLD WAS ON A BLEEDER VESSEL, GOT LOOSE AND MADE ITS WAY THROUGH THE VAGINA.  THE DOCTOR REMOVED THE STAPLE AND NOW THERE IS A HOLE IN MY VAGINA AND URINE IS COMING THROUGH THE HOLE.  I AM IN EXTREME PAIN.  URINE IS COMING FROM BOTH PLACES AND THE DOCTOR CAN NOT DO ANYTHING UNTIL THE RECOVER OF THE CHEMO AND RADIATION WHICH TAKES ABOUT 4 TO 6 WEEKS AND IT HAS ONLY BEEN 2 WEEKS.  I AM NOT SURE WHAT TO DO.  I DID GO SEE AN UROLOGIST AND I AM STILL WAITING TO HEAR WHAT THEY ARE GOING TO DO FOR ME.  I CAN’T GO ANYWHERE EXCEPT WORK AND HOME BECAUSE OF IN NEED OF THE TOILET.  
HAS ANYONE EXPERIENCE THIS?
Blank
135691_tn?1271100723
I recently had a surgical staple make it's way through my vagina as well, although my total hysterectomy was done over 2 years ago. I spotted for almost two weeks, but it's gone now, and I'm not too concerned about it. It sounds as though you have formed a fistula - a channel between two organs that wouldn't normally be connected. (between your bladder and vagina) If you have urine coming out your vagina, I can't believe your doctor's aren't more concerned. I would seek a second opinion ASAP. I would think you are at high risk for an infection.
Becky
Blank
Avatar_n_tn
Thank you.  I just seen the urologist today and knowing that I do have a fistula he also didn't seem to concern about this.  I am in such pain that I can't beleive these doctors are not more concern than they are.  I will seek a different opinion.  Thanks again.
Blank
Avatar_n_tn
Just today I went in  to see an Orthopaedic and I was told I needed an MRI to see how serious of a condition I have, I was also told because of the staples I have inside I could not have a closed MRI. I stood there stunned, I did not have any Idea I had staples in me.  I had my Gulbladder removed 6 years ago and I was never told I had staples, well last week I went in for an MRI through another doctor and luckily I freaked out when they started to put me inside the machine, and they had to take me out. (Clausterphobic)  I am so glad because I never knew these staples were there. What could of happend to me?  Thank god I reacted like I did or else I would have been really in trouble.  Thank God for this new doctor to see them in my X-ray.  I cannot believe I did not know this I am still shocked.  I will order my surgery report though because I was told they were going in microscopicly and I have the little marks left from that, now how did they find a way to get staples in there?  Maybe thats not what it is.... OMG I am really freaking out now, could it be part of an instument used to go in microscopicly?   JoAnn
Blank
135691_tn?1271100723
Staples are in there for a reason. I have many surgical staples still in my abdomen from my debulking surgery nearly 3 years ago. They staple bleeding blood vessels as well as other things I'm sure I don't know about. As for the MRI, I've had 4 in the last year and have never had a problem. It's not like a microwave or anything - your staples wouldn't have caused you to heat up and explode! An MRI is a picture taken with magnets and if you have metal inside you, well, you know that a magnet would be attracted to the metal. It can distort the picture...that's all. The staples are so small, you wouldn't believe it if you saw them...
No need to freak out...although I understand your concern!
Becky
Blank
483733_tn?1326802046
Fifteen years ago my bowel perforated due to ulcerative colitis.  They removed my entire bowel and left me with an ileostomy.  A year later I had surgery to build me a new rectum out of my small bowel.  They cut open the bowel and sew/staple it into a pouch and sew it into your rectal muscles and gave me back full function.  I thank God for those staples on a continual basis.  All staples are not bad.
Blank
Avatar_n_tn
I had hernia surgery last year... and they used staples to close... last month I tore a muscle in my leg that would heal and had a large bump.. upon getting an x-ray I was told that I had a staple in my calf... I'm assuming that somehow a staple was left or drop in me and traveled down my leg... Now I can't find a surgeon who will remove it and it hurts like heck.
Blank
Avatar_n_tn
It is amazing how we find out what we have in our bodies. I had a abdominal surgery merely 18 years ago and just found out from a xray that there are approximately 12-14 staples still in my abdomin (abdomen). The Dr. told me that I had staples on the outside and stitches on the inside that would desolve. Well, I been wondering why I can't sweep or mop a floor for a long period of time without having pain in my back and stomach.

How can a doctor not tell you about staples left in for ever?
Blank
Avatar_n_tn
I, too, have been having abdominal pain. In 1992, I had a C-Section. In 1993, I had my right ovary removed through a laparotomy. In 1994, I had another C-Section. In 2004, I had a total abdominal hysterectomy. Over the past two years, I have had increasing pain in my right abdominal region. After many tests and a colonoscopy last month, I finally had a laparoscopy to check for adhesions (scar tissue). They found my left ovary was stuck to my abdomen through adhesions, causing "referred pain" to my right side. My right side looks clean, but I have staples! I never knew I had staples and have NO IDEA which of these many surgeries left these staples. I think they are from the 1993 surgery (removal of ovary). The problem is that after this recent surgery I am still having right side pain. I would like to know if anyone has heard of staples causing muscle or nerve damage? Can they pull or tear the muscles??? I am now being sent to a neurologist for a muscle/nerve study.
Blank
875370_tn?1240071547
20 years ago...after having my daughter I developed a very rare kidney infection caused by a flu virus. It created a pocket of infection on the side of my kidney and was slowly "eating" away at the organ. They had to remove it and when they did they left a very large scar across the right side of my body. They literally cut me in half to get it out. A few years later I had to have an x-ray due to acid reflux issues. They wanted to see if my stomach looked normal and when they showed me the x-ray I almost fainted! There had to be at least thirty of these little white lines covering up the area near my stomach. They couldn't get a clear enough picture of my stomach to tell anything and the doctor assured me that the staples wouldn't hurt me, but now that I've heard about the possibility of them dislodging and traveling through my body I am really scared.  I have no pain but ever since the surgery 20 years ago...the skin surface on my right side is completely numb. I can stick myself with a pin and not feel it until it reaches a certain depth. Could having an MRI possibly dislodge them? Would it pull on them and cause pain or worse, cause internal bleeding?

Lyn Johnson
Blank
Avatar_f_tn
I was a burns patient around 14 years ago. Generally skins is grafted onto burned areas with staples. They remove all the staples during sessions where they take off the bandages for the first time. I went to the chiropractor about 7 years ago to find that in a particularly messy skin graft (apparently it had been done by interns) there were around 50 surgical staples embedded in my skin, apparently swallowed up. I am a little concerned as I have started to experience some chest pains with can affect my breathing for short periods of time and I am considering getting an X-ray to see if they have moved.
Blank
Avatar_f_tn
Im 16 and when I was at the end of my freshman year I was a passenger in a car and I  got in a severe car accident, my foot got completely degloved and ever since then I have had severe pain when I walk and I showed the doctors where all the pain was and they decided not to tell me they accidentally left 30-35 staples in my foot and the skin is completely grown back over and it's causing a ton of pain and they refuse to move them along with every other doctor in my state because they are all buddies, so I actually have to go out of state to see if anyone is willing to remove them and make all this pain go away. All they want to do in the state I live in is give me a permanent nerve block, as opposed to just oh I don't know FIX THE DARN PROBLEM!
Blank
Avatar_f_tn
hey guys i had a appendectomy done in 08 and have chronic pelvic pain so they did a diagnostic laproscopic exam to find out i know have staples inbedded in my uterus and my ovaries, n the dr said it would do more harm to take them out then to keep them in. i couldnt believe it! i have been having this pain for over a year and she didnt see why she should pull the staples out. anyone heard of this?  please email me at ***@**** i would really like to know what else i could do, i would think if i ever got pregnant again that the stiches in their would stretch and tear my uterus but i could be wrong?! please help.  thanks
Blank
Avatar_n_tn
I had a thymic surgery and wasn't aware that I had staples in there I would think the doctor would tell you this I found out by having alot of pain and having a through xray and ultrasound but I had no idea i wasn't aware of this at all.  this is also close to your heart and lungs etc. I'm sure it will be alright but I do still get alot of pain in that area.  They will be left there forever so ther is not much more I can do.
Blank
Avatar_n_tn
I had surgery 1 month ago - had closing staples removed about 10 days later. Now I can feel something hard at the upper end of my incision and it is a little red and sore to touch.  Is it possible they missed a staple that maybe my skin had grown over and what should I do?
Blank
Avatar_f_tn
I had gastric surgery more than 30 years ago, I've suffered with pain, bloating, burning and Acid Reflux etc.  Last month I had an x-ray on my lung, the tech told me she saw metal in my stomach and asked if I had any metal in my body, I told her not that I know of.  My surgery was severe as the scar is from between my breast to my belly button, I cannot sleep due to stomach problems all day & every night. No matter what I eat it causes me discomfort.  I'm thinking maybe the staples from the surgery along with adhesions scar tissue maybe the culprit.  Has anyone experience anything like this?  If so please email me @***@****.  Any help would be greatly appreciated.  God bless.
Blank
Avatar_f_tn
I have been suffering from abdominal pain since my hysterectomy in 2008.  Three years, three surgeries and 38 doctors later, I found a surgeon who was willing to perform concious pain mapping.  I was partially awake when he did the laparoscopy, then touched certain areas inside my abdomen to find the source of my pain.  He found that I had approx. 40 staples left from my first surgery and that they were causing all of the pain.  I am now on the path to recovery, but have a lot of unanswered questions.  My doctor is very curious as to why so many staples were used and why they were left in.  We still can't believe it, but my pain is almost gone.  Last August, I went to Mayo Clinic in Arizona and was examined by multiple doctors, had close to 100 tests performed and they told me that they couldn't help me....which is something I am used to hearing, but couldn't believe it.  They finally told me that 30% of the women who go through there with chronic pelvic pain never find an answer.  I couldn't believe it.  I was bedridden most of the time and on very strong pain meds.  My family and I are excited to have our life back, but lost all that time.  How many other people have suffered?
Blank
Avatar_f_tn
I am 22 years old and had my apendix removed in 2008. I have been having on and off again pain by the scar and its extremely uncomfortable, as well as bloating that has been happening. I had went to the doctors about 5 times and said nothing was wrong. I went to the hospital, and they had given me an MRI and was told shortly after that I still have staples in my stomach to consult my surgeon. I went to my surgeon and said they should go away on its own. It has been 3 years since my operation and am in an extreme amount of pain.

Can someone please tell me if this is normal? If so how long will it take for them to go away?
Blank
Avatar_n_tn
I am like another lady on here. I just recently went to the chiropractor & had xrays done. Found out I have 26 staples in my stomach from hysterectomy 30 years ago. Now I have a lump in my breast & they want to do an MRI & I don't know whether to have it or not. I have never had any problems with the staples that I know of, but I don't want to have the MRI & start having problems. My chiropractor was dumbfounded. She said "I have never seen anything like this in my life. I had no idea I had these in me. Do I have the MRI or just go staight to a biopsy?
Blank
Avatar_m_tn
I had an ovary removed due to endometriosis 5 years ago, and since then the exact spot where my "doctor" did the surgery has hurt far worse than before the surgery.  I have seen probably 12 doctors, including ER visits, due to this pain, which really got severe during my period, and got addicted to pain meds for a bit, which was hell.  All of the doctors got her notes on the surgery.  The notes, which I didn't see, make note of the staples used to seal up where my ovary was.  Now I had a hysterectomy by a decent doctor last month.  At my post-op she showed me a photo of what looked like some frankenstein picture of what that doctor had done--she had used at least 10 metal staples.  In all this time, not one doctor (including her) told me the pain could be because I have metal staples all over the place there.  It put a strain on my marriage, I was seeing a shrink---chronic pain takes a toll.  I missed a lot of work too.  So yes, I am pissed as hell and I am going after her and it will be interesting to see if I can get some of my money back that I have wasted over the past 5 years PLUS pain and suffering.  I seriously want to do a little surgery on her at this point.
Blank
Avatar_f_tn
I had nasal polyps removed almost two years ago and for a year and a half or so I have been having temporal pain went to my GP she said well you have disk problem it's referred pain from neck so I have been to chiropractor all year still no relief then I'm sent to PT neck feels great but temporal pain still there so I have MRI and the find a staple on the area of my temporal artery how it got there I have no idea they asked if I ever had surgery on my head I said no only nasal polyps removed  same day surgery but he never said he left a staple he would have to tell me I'm sure other than that we don't k ow where it came from I'm having it removed soon and hopefully the temple pain will gone
Blank
Avatar_f_tn
I just found out that I have 2 staples in my stomach close to my esphegeous after a bariatris swallow.I had ryuen y by pass surgery over 15yrs ago.I have had multiple tests in the past so this is all brand new.Dont know what to think...still waiting to hear from Doctor. sybskids
Blank
Avatar_m_tn
My husband and I had sex for the first time after my surgery. It was one month exactly and before we were completely through he was in pain. There was blood. I am not sure if I spotted because he was bleeding pretty badly. Somehow he was cut and the sex had made it a little raw. Not him but the sore. He won't let me see it but its still sore now. I have no idea how he was cut enough to bleed like that but he had to hold something to the tip where it was so it was inside of me somewhere. I shave but I have never had someone get cut from that. Please let me know if this has happened to anyone. I have searched everywhere online and I'd rather not ask my doctor or they will know we had sex. We were not rough so that could not be it and he has never done that before. He said his urine is not bloody only where he was cut.
Blank
Avatar_f_tn
How are they relieving your pain? Are they removing the staples? I just found out that I have several staples, but I'm not sure how long they've been there. I've had 6 abdominal surgeries over the last 20 years, including one in January 2012. I've been complaining of pain for over a year (and several other symptoms) but everyone kept telling me to relax and maybe it would go away. "Take some anti-inflammatory" or "You're just having an anxiety attack" or "It's your hormones." Now that I know I have staples, I'm wondering if I have torn a muscle or dislodged a staple or something. I don't know if it's possible for them to be removed, but I'd really like for the pain to stop!
Blank
Avatar_m_tn
I too am a burn patient. I lost my legs and 43% of my body burned with multiple skin graphs. I am always feeling pinching pain in my legs and butt area I thought it was cause it was heeling. I had an X-ray done on just one leg only to see I have 25-30 staples under my skin. I'm not a dr but this has to be the pain I'm feeling. If I have that many in one leg I'd assume I have that many in both plus my butt. Can these be removed or am I to live with this pain? Also can this be considered malpractice
Blank
Post a Comment
To
Blank
Weight Tracker
Weight Tracker
Start Tracking Now
Ovarian Cysts Community Resources
RSS Expert Activity
233488_tn?1310696703
Blank
New Cannabis Article from NORTH Mag...
Jul 20 by John C Hagan III, MD, FACS, FAAOBlank
242532_tn?1269553979
Blank
3 Reasons Why You are Still Binge E...
Jul 14 by Roger Gould, M.D.Blank
242532_tn?1269553979
Blank
Emotional Eating: What Your Closet ...
Jul 09 by Roger Gould, M.D.Blank
Top Women's Health Answerers
9039460_tn?1401809405
Blank
sammy932
Trinidad and Tobago
Avatar_f_tn
Blank
aisha910
dayton, OH
Avatar_m_tn
Blank
krchelle