UMEM Educational Pearls

Category: Pediatrics

Title: Can you glue a pediatric nail bed laceration?

Keywords: Nail bed injuries, wound closure (PubMed Search)

Posted: 1/20/2017 by Jennifer Guyther, MD (Updated: 6/13/2024)
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More studies are needed, but the existing data shows that medical adhesives may be quicker without impacting cosmetic and functional outcome.


Nail bed injuries occur in 15-24% of children with fingertip injuries.

In 1997, medical adhesive was first used to secure the avulsed nail plate back to the nail bed instead of suturing back into place.  By 2008, there were small studies looking at the utility of using medical adhesive to close the laceration of the nail bed.  The studies were small, but there was a tendency towards shorter repair times and no difference between pain, cosmetic outcome or function.

A total of 6 articles were included in this review – 2 using histoacryl and 4 using demabond.


Edwards, S, Parkinson L.  Is Fixing Pediatric Nail Bed Injuries with Medical Adhesives as Effective as Suturing?  A Review of the Literature.  Pediatric Emergency Care.  2016.