Use of skin staplers in experimental gastrointestinal injuries

David L Dawson, James A. Coil, Mansour Jadali, Gina Garrett

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


Undocumented reports exist concerning use of skin staplers to close small perforations of the gut. This study examined use of this device in experimental gastrointestinal injuries in dogs. In 18 anesthetized mongrel dogs, matching uniform perforations were made with a sterile leather punch; one perforation of each pair was closed with 3-0 silk and the other with a skin stapler. A total of 80 stomach, 238 small intestine, and 140 colon perforations were created. Hole sizes progressed from 1.9 to 5.0 mm. Unrepaired intestinal wounds leaked and were lethal. No leaks were identified in wounds closed with either sutures or staples provided that closure was complete. Speed of staple closure was faster than that of suture closure (1.2 vs. 16.0 seconds), but ease of closure was similar. It is concluded that skin staplers are safe for repair of small wounds, created under ideal conditions, in canine gastrointestinal tracts. Similar injuries in traumatized humans deserve study, but staplers may be ineffective for human intestine since gut wall thickness inexisting skin humans is less than that in dogs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)204-209
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Trauma - Injury, Infection and Critical Care
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1992
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Critical Care and Intensive Care Medicine


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