Dermabond Not Coming Off (Causes, Solutions, And FAQs)

Dermabond is a popular medical adhesive used to close wounds and incisions, providing a convenient alternative to traditional sutures.

However, in some cases, individuals may experience difficulties with Dermabond not coming off as expected.

In this article, I will explore the possible causes behind this issue, effective solutions to address it and answer frequently asked questions.

Dermabond Not Coming Off: Potential Causes

When Dermabond fails to come off as intended, it can be frustrating and concerning. There are several reasons:

Cause 1: Improper Application

One possible cause is improper application. If the Dermabond was not applied correctly, it may not adhere properly to the skin, leading to difficulties in removal.

It’s essential to follow the instructions provided by medical professionals and ensure a clean, dry surface before applying Dermabond.

Cause 2: Excessive Moisture

Excessive moisture can hinder the bonding properties of Dermabond, making it challenging to remove. If the wound or incision site is frequently exposed to water or excessive sweating occurs, the adhesive may not release as expected.

Taking precautions to keep the area dry and avoiding prolonged exposure to water can help prevent this issue.

Cause 3: Thick Application

Another possible cause is the excessive application of Dermabond. When too much adhesive is used, it can create a thicker layer that takes longer to dissolve or detach naturally.

It’s important to apply the appropriate amount of Dermabond as directed by healthcare professionals to facilitate easier removal.

Cause 4: Sensitive Skin

Individuals with sensitive skin may experience difficulties with Dermabond removal. Skin sensitivity can make the adhesive more adherent and resistant to detachment.

If you have a history of sensitive skin or known allergies, it’s important to inform your healthcare provider before applying Dermabond.

Cause 5: Prolonged Healing Process

In certain cases, a prolonged healing process may cause Dermabond not to come off as expected.

The body’s natural healing mechanisms can lead to increased adherence of the adhesive to the skin, making removal challenging. This issue is more likely to occur in wounds or incisions that take longer to heal.


There are several solutions you can try. It’s important to consult with your healthcare provider before attempting any of these methods to ensure they are suitable for your specific situation.

Solution 1: Warm Soapy Water

One of the simplest solutions is to soak the affected area in warm soapy water. This method can help loosen the adhesive and make it easier to remove.

Gently washing the area with mild soap can assist in breaking down the bond without causing harm to the skin.

Solution 2: Oils or Lotions

Applying oils or lotions, such as baby oil or petroleum jelly, to the edges of the Dermabond can help dissolve the adhesive. These substances can weaken the bond and facilitate the removal process.

However, it’s important to avoid applying excessive amounts to prevent skin irritation.

Solution 3: Medical Adhesive Removers

Specialized medical adhesive removers are available that can effectively dissolve Dermabond. These products are designed to break down the adhesive bond without causing harm to the skin.

It’s crucial to follow the instructions provided with the adhesive remover and consult with a healthcare professional if needed.

Solution 4: Time and Patience

In some cases, Dermabond may simply require more time to naturally detach from the skin. It’s essential to exercise patience and avoid forcefully removing the adhesive.

Continuous gentle cleaning and moisturizing of the area can promote natural detachment over time.


Can I forcefully remove Dermabond if it’s not coming off?

No, forcefully removing Dermabond can cause skin damage and increase the risk of infection. It’s best to use gentle removal methods or consult with a healthcare professional.

How long does it usually take for Dermabond to come off on its own?

The time it takes for Dermabond to naturally detach varies depending on various factors such as the location of the wound, individual healing process, and type of Dermabond used. In general, it can take around one to three weeks.

Is it normal to experience itching or redness around the Dermabond?

Mild itching or redness around the Dermabond site can be normal as part of the healing process. However, if it becomes severe or accompanied by other concerning symptoms, it’s advisable to consult with a healthcare professional.

Can I swim or take a bath with Dermabond?

It’s best to avoid exposing Dermabond to excessive moisture, such as swimming or taking baths until it naturally detaches. Consult with your healthcare provider for specific instructions based on your situation.

Can I apply any over-the-counter adhesive removers for Dermabond removal?

It’s advisable to consult with a healthcare professional before using any over-the-counter adhesive removers to ensure they are safe and suitable for your situation.


Experiencing difficulties with Dermabond not coming off can be a concern, but there are various causes and solutions for this issue.

By understanding the potential causes, utilizing appropriate removal methods, and seeking guidance from healthcare professionals, individuals can navigate the challenge of Dermabond removal effectively.

Remember to exercise patience, prioritize gentle removal techniques, and consult with a healthcare provider if necessary to ensure proper wound care and minimize any potential complications.

Maria Jenkins

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