ABRASIONS

The small hazards of everyday life may sometimes lead to abrasions, which include minor scrapes and superficial tiny cuts on outer surface of the skin. Medical attention is typically required for deeper cuts and wounds, but even in case of ordinary abrasions, it is important to take care and treat them properly. Ignoring minor abrasions can lead to complications requiring more serious treatment later.

Risk of Infection

After the initial treatment for the abrasion, it is important to look out for any potential signs of infection during the recovery period. If any of the following signs are noticed, a doctor must be consulted urgently:

  • Pain does not subside.
  • Swelling, warmth, and redness persist.
  • There is drainage from the wound.
  • Red streaks appear around the abrasion.
  • Patient experiences fever over 100˚ F.

 

The abrasion will begin to heal as a scab forms over the affected area. The scab helps protect the wound against infection, while new skin appears underneath.

Healing abrasion Infected Abrasion

incised wounds

Incised wounds are caused by sharp objects, such as knives or shards of glass, slicing into the skin. Depending on the injury, underlying blood vessels can be punctured, leading to significant blood loss. A severed artery is a medical emergency, because the muscular action of this blood vessel will pump the entire blood supply out of the wound in just a few minutes.


First aid treatment for severe bleeding includes:

  • Remove clothing around the site for easier access.
  • Apply pressure directly to the wound with your hands to stem the blood flow.
  • Cover the wound with a sterile dressing, if possible, and continue to apply direct pressure (bandage firmly).
  • Try to raise the injured area above the level of the person’s heart.
  • Don’t remove existing dressings if they become saturated with blood, but instead add fresh dressings over the top.

Seek urgent medical attention. You may need to call an ambulance if you cannot stop the bleeding, are feeling faint, sweaty or dizzy.

Abrasion is a damage to the epidermis of the skin. Abrasions are caused primarily by friction against a rough surface, which removes the superficial skin layers. Although most abrasions are simply scraping and are easily treated; large, very painful, or infected abrasions may require medical attention and may result in scarring.

Common sites of abrasion injury include the knees, the elbows, and the palms of the hands.

Treatment

Large, very painful, or infected abrasions may require medical attention and may result in scarring

Cleaning the affected area:

First the affected area should be rinsed with clean water to remove debris and dirt, and soap may be used to clean the wound thoroughly. Stronger cleansing agents such as iodine, hydrogen peroxide or alcohol may not be necessary for minor wounds.

Bleeding

If the abrasion is minor, the bleeding will stop on its own. However, if the cut is in such an area where bleeding is more, the patient can apply direct pressure on the affected skin using a gauze or a clean cloth. This should stop the bleeding after a while as the pressure is sustained. In a situation where bleeding does not stop with these measures, medical attention must be sought immediately.

When to Seek Medical Attention

Most minor abrasions do not require the attention of a professional healthcare provider. However, a doctor’s care should be sought in the following situations:

  • The abrasion is on the face.
  • The abrasion’s edges are jagged.
  • The cut is deeper than a quarter of an inch.
  • The muscle or fat is visible from the abrasion.
  • The debris from the wound cannot be removed.
  • The patient has not had a tetanus shot in five years.
  • The abrasion is due to a human or animal bite.
  • There is loss of movement or loss of sensation in the affected area.

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