warning, gross story and pictures ahead.
November 2003, I sliced open my index finger, and managed to damage a tendon in the process. Went to the ER and had it stitched up. Have the stitches out a few weeks later and the doc says it looks good, but to keep it bandaged up for 10 more days.
The 10 days are up, I take off the bandage and what do you know - it's infected. Get on some meds, get the infection cleared up. My finger never healed properly, but I always attributed it to the fact that the tendon was damaged.
Over the years, I would get swelling/inflamation in the area, and it would get incredibly painful - this would happen a few times a year. I would think about going to see the doctor, but then it would go away and would look somewhat normal.
Fast forward to 3 weeks ago. It swells up again, really red, hot and sore. And I notice fluid coming out of it, so me, being the non-medical personell that I am, decides to help it drain. I won't go into details. A few days later though, I notice something black sticking out of my skin - it looks like a thread. That's when I realize that it was a stitch. I call my doc, but she is on holidays so call back on Monday. Go in, she thinks I am nuts until she looks at my finger. By this point, I have a "bubble" of black coming up as well, not just the initial thread. She can't get it out, so tells me to soak it and put antibiotic cream on a few times a day and come back if they don't work there way out. So apparently, black stitches are to be used on the outside, as they don't dissolve - which means that the doctor used the wrong type to stitch my tendon. As of now, they are still not out - so I am going back tomorrow. But, I am so grossly fascinated by it that I had to take pictures.
Again, warning that it is quite gross, so look at your own risk