Treating a Wound but Super Glue Won’t Work? Use a Skin Stapler!

surgical staplers

Skin Staplers Offer a Quick and Easy Alternative to Sutures & Superglue

Our superglue instead of stitches post showed you when and when you can’t repair a cut with super glue. For instance, at times glue might get inside the wound and prohibit it from healing. In others, the edges of the laceration might have too much tension on them to be brought together easily, and will come apart with gluing alone. In those cases you’ll want to reach for the next easy to use medical device in your bag – a skin stapler. There are many different types, but you can click the following link to purchase the disposable surgical skin stapler that I recommend for preppers and survivalists: Disposable Surgical Skin Stapler!

Skin Staplers

Skin staplers come in different sizes and hold different numbers of staples. All were designed to be disposable, with the larger staplers being used for longer surgical wounds. Of course preppers might want to “reuse” these disposable skin staplers, as resupply after an apocalypse is highly unlikely. Smaller devices, like the one shown in the video below, hold fewer staplers, but fit in your bag better. Personally, I like the larger ones. They are easier to aim than the smaller, and after disinfecting them as best possible, I can use a single skin stapler on multiple family members if need be. Regardless, you don’t need to be a real good shot to make them work, as you’ll see in my bumbling demonstration below:

This video shows you how to use a skin stapler in one minute:

Removal Times for Both Staples & Sutures:

Staple Removal Times

A Note on Removal Times

It does not matter which you use – skin staplers or Sutures. In general, the farther the injury is from the heart, the longer you leave them in. But for Staples, you will need a Staple Remover for your bag. Trying to take them out with a pair of needle nose pliers is beyond brutal!

staple remover

Surgical Staple Remover

But You Prefer the Rambo Technique? No Problem!

If neither glue nor staples appeal to you, we have one last “quick option.” We call it the Rambo technique – after it’s public introduction in the movie “First Blood.” Our method is easier though, and it’s been refined from those back-woods days in the Great Pacific Northwest. (Our current location by the way).

Commonly known as “putting in stitches,” suturing is not complicated. And if you choose to use a straight needle – it’s even simpler. In this section we’ll show you how to repair lacerations with a straight needle. Best of all, our technique requires almost no equipment and takes only minutes to learn and perform!

Straight Needles

Surgical suturing needles come in many confusing sizes and configurations. Most needles are curved into a half-circle, but the type we’ll be using here are straight and flat at the end. These are handy because unlike curved needles, you need to carry nothing other than the package of suture itself.


Suture is rated in much the same way as fishing line. Though instead of “pound-test,” a numbering system of zeros “0” is used. The more 0’s, the smaller diameter of the material. Most useful are sizes between 2-0 and 5-0. If you can only get one size buy 2-0 or 3-0. It’s better to use a heavier material than you need, than selecting a smaller size that might break.

Suture material is the “string” that comes attached to the needle in the package, and it can be divided into two types: absorbable and non-absorbable. Preppers often find non-absorbable materials easier to use and more robust. Absorbables are designed for internal use, as with appendectomies or hernia repairs. They can be used to repair skin cuts, but may cause the wound edges to turn red. This can be problematic because the resulting skin discoloration can be mistaken for an infection.

Make it Silk for Your BOB!


The most common and perhaps most useful suture is silk. It’s cheap and easy to tie with an old fashion square knot. Tie three or four times, cut off the excessive string, and move on to the next one. Here’s a video on the technique:

Click here if the video above did not download onto your device.

After watching our video you’ll be good to go. Additional straight needle suturing techniques can be found on The Prepper Pages YouTube channel for those interested.

In addition, to learn a significant amount of information for suturing lacerations, including which instruments and items are needed to close wounds and where to buy them, suture needle sizing, the timing of suture removal, along with recommended non-surgical options for wound closure, click the link below. The link is for a hospital grade suture kit and contains a wealth of information on suturing.

12 Piece Operating Room Grade Suture Laceration Kit

The following is a high quality low cost surgical skin stapler that I recommend for preppers and survivalists: Click this link to purchase the EverReady Sterile Disposable Surgical Skin Stapler (2-Pack).

surgical staplers


Survival Medicine Book

If you’d like to know more about skin staplers, sutures, and wound care, please click on the book image above.

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