Pretty sure a solvent is out of the question.
June 29, 2015 8:00 AM   Subscribe

My 4-year-old sustained a laceration above his eye in a bouncy house incident one month ago. He required 6 stitches but threw a fit after 4 so they glued the rest. The glue WILL NOT COME OFF and it is black dirt at this point. I need advice.

Picture of remaining glue here. It is gross and unnecessary at this point, but it is REALLY stuck and he cries if I try to pick it off. I try to tell him to pick at it but he won't. How do I get it off ASAP with the least tears? Alternatively, is it really safe to just let it wear off naturally? The urgent care doc said it would but it seems to be taking much longer than I expected.
posted by rabbitrabbit to Health & Fitness (10 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Dr. Internet, aka an ER nurse manager someone called, suggested Vaseline, Bacitracin or Neosporin, which should be low-key enough not to matter if they don't work.

Someone also suggested acetone-based nail polish remover (most surgical glues are cyanoacrylate) on a cotton ball or swab, but that would probably be pretty sketchy near a little kid's eye.

Have you tried alcohol?
posted by St. Hubbins at 8:11 AM on June 29, 2015 [1 favorite]

I'd second covering it with lots of Vaseline (cover with bandaids to keep on and moist) to soften it to a removable state.

I had this with my kid's toe and it took a lot of professional picking at Urgent Care to get it unembedded (I probably had the stomach to do it myself but I was concerned for an underlying infection). I spent most of the time at Urgent Care holding the kid ... it wasn't pain ful but it was uncomfortable to have the foot held down and "pulled" at to get it all out.
posted by tilde at 8:23 AM on June 29, 2015

Someone also suggested acetone-based nail polish remover - please do not use nail polish remover on a small child's face!
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 8:27 AM on June 29, 2015 [13 favorites]

A doctor can give you adhesive removal wipes that work well. Call the urgent care and see if they have any. Or you can buy them on Amazon. This is what my doctor gave me following surgery with a glue-sealed incision.
posted by something something at 8:31 AM on June 29, 2015 [8 favorites]

Try margarine to soften it.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 8:33 AM on June 29, 2015

Vaseline or olive oil! (You can wipe it with olive oil and at night, dab on Vaseline, perhaps under a band-aid.)
posted by DarlingBri at 8:33 AM on June 29, 2015

It's really safe to let it wear off naturally.
posted by notned at 8:50 AM on June 29, 2015 [7 favorites]

Are you taking him to the pool this summer? If not, it might benefit you to do so. Even a one month membership to a gym with a pool would be great. Every child should know how to swim and the time in the pool water should help wear the glue off faster. Also, children get really tired after swimming so that would be a good time to try to pick it off, a little bit at a time.
posted by myselfasme at 11:06 AM on June 29, 2015 [1 favorite]

Go back to urgent care and let them remove it, and examine it.
posted by discopolo at 11:06 AM on June 29, 2015

Is there a chance you can just keep working at it while he sleeps? It might take a couple of days, but maybe vaseline the first night, and then picking at it at naptime?
posted by Mo Nickels at 11:40 AM on June 29, 2015

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