EMERGENCIES: CUTS

They need careful attention
There is rarely permanent damage from shallow, minor cuts (or lacerations) in which the wound is limited to the skin and the fatty tissue beneath it, and they usually can be treated easily at home.
In most minor cuts, bleeding is slow and stops on its own after a few minutes. Slightly deeper cuts can reach the veins, and cause steady blood flow that is slow and dark red. Pressure on the wound usually stops bleeding after a short period. The most serious type of external bleeding, however, is from a cut that strikes an artery. Bleeding is profuse and can be difficult to control even with pressure on the wound. Blood will be bright red and come in spurts as the heart beats. A person with severe bleeding can slip into shock.
Stitches are usually not necessary if the edges of the cut can be pulled together with a bandage or sterile adhesive tape — except on the face, where scarring maybe a problem. However, your doctor may suture (or stitch) cuts in areas subject to frequent movement, such as a finger; in young children, who would pull off bandages; or when a cut is more than one inch long, deep and with jagged edges. Suturing should take place within eight hours of injury for best results. Call your doctor if you’re not sure whether you need stitches.
What you can do control severe bleeding
Dial 911 or your local emergency services number. While waiting for help to arrive:
Have the injured person lie down with their head slightly lower than their body. Elevate their legs and the site of the bleeding.
Keep the person warm to lessen the possibility of shock.
Remove large pieces of dirt and debris from the wound, but only if it can be done easily. DO NOT remove any impaled objects or try to clean the wound.
Place a clean cloth over the wound and apply direct, steady pressure for 15 minutes. To avoid transmission of blood-borne infections, use your bare hands only if necessary.
DO NOT apply direct pressure if there is an object in the wound or a bone is protruding or visible. Apply pressure around the wound instead.
If the first cloth becomes soaked with blood, apply a fresh one over it while continuing steady pressure. Do not remove used bandages.
If bleeding does not slow or stop after 15 minutes, apply firm, continuous pressure on a pressure point between the wound and the heart to restrict blood flow through the major arteries. Pressure points are located on the inside upper arms and on the upper thighs in the groin area.
Give prompt attention to minor wounds
Apply pressure on the wound for 10 or 15 minutes to stop bleeding, if necessary.
Gently clean the cut with soap and water or 3% hydrogen peroxide, and a clean cloth. Be sure to remove dirt, glass and other particles. Antiseptic creams are not necessary and will not lessen the risk of infection or speed healing.
Keep the cut uncovered and exposed to air if possible.
If the wound is slightly gaping, pull the edges of the wound together with a regular or butterfly bandage. If necessary, cover the wound with dry gauze and tape. Change gauze daily, but don’t take the butterfly bandage off until the wound is knit together.
If you must cover a cut that doesn’t require a butterfly bandage, apply antibiotic ointment to a gauze pad and tape the pad over the wound. Change the dressing once a day, or whenever it gets wet.
Watch for signs of infection
Thorough cleansing of the wound is the best way to prevent infection and speed healing. Infection is more likely when a cut occurs in an area that is difficult to keep clean and dry, such as on a hand, foot or near a child’s mouth. Signs of infection may begin about 24 to 48 hours after the injury. They include redness around the area or red streaks leading away, swelling, warmth or tenderness, pus, fever of 101° F or higher and tender or swollen lymph nodes.
Final notes
Deep cuts can sever or damage major blood vessels, nerves or tendons, so it is important to know the signs of a serious laceration. In general, be
concerned more with cuts to the face, hands, chest, abdomen or back, which have the potential to be more critical than lacerations to other areas
*9\303\2*

EMERGENCIES: CUTSThey need careful attentionThere is rarely permanent damage from shallow, minor cuts (or lacerations) in which the wound is limited to the skin and the fatty tissue beneath it, and they usually can be treated easily at home.In most minor cuts, bleeding is slow and stops on its own after a few minutes. Slightly deeper cuts can reach the veins, and cause steady blood flow that is slow and dark red. Pressure on the wound usually stops bleeding after a short period. The most serious type of external bleeding, however, is from a cut that strikes an artery. Bleeding is profuse and can be difficult to control even with pressure on the wound. Blood will be bright red and come in spurts as the heart beats. A person with severe bleeding can slip into shock.Stitches are usually not necessary if the edges of the cut can be pulled together with a bandage or sterile adhesive tape — except on the face, where scarring maybe a problem. However, your doctor may suture (or stitch) cuts in areas subject to frequent movement, such as a finger; in young children, who would pull off bandages; or when a cut is more than one inch long, deep and with jagged edges. Suturing should take place within eight hours of injury for best results. Call your doctor if you’re not sure whether you need stitches.What you can do control severe bleedingDial 911 or your local emergency services number. While waiting for help to arrive: Have the injured person lie down with their head slightly lower than their body. Elevate their legs and the site of the bleeding.Keep the person warm to lessen the possibility of shock.Remove large pieces of dirt and debris from the wound, but only if it can be done easily. DO NOT remove any impaled objects or try to clean the wound.Place a clean cloth over the wound and apply direct, steady pressure for 15 minutes. To avoid transmission of blood-borne infections, use your bare hands only if necessary.DO NOT apply direct pressure if there is an object in the wound or a bone is protruding or visible. Apply pressure around the wound instead.If the first cloth becomes soaked with blood, apply a fresh one over it while continuing steady pressure. Do not remove used bandages.If bleeding does not slow or stop after 15 minutes, apply firm, continuous pressure on a pressure point between the wound and the heart to restrict blood flow through the major arteries. Pressure points are located on the inside upper arms and on the upper thighs in the groin area.Give prompt attention to minor woundsApply pressure on the wound for 10 or 15 minutes to stop bleeding, if necessary.Gently clean the cut with soap and water or 3% hydrogen peroxide, and a clean cloth. Be sure to remove dirt, glass and other particles. Antiseptic creams are not necessary and will not lessen the risk of infection or speed healing.Keep the cut uncovered and exposed to air if possible.If the wound is slightly gaping, pull the edges of the wound together with a regular or butterfly bandage. If necessary, cover the wound with dry gauze and tape. Change gauze daily, but don’t take the butterfly bandage off until the wound is knit together.If you must cover a cut that doesn’t require a butterfly bandage, apply antibiotic ointment to a gauze pad and tape the pad over the wound. Change the dressing once a day, or whenever it gets wet.
Watch for signs of infectionThorough cleansing of the wound is the best way to prevent infection and speed healing. Infection is more likely when a cut occurs in an area that is difficult to keep clean and dry, such as on a hand, foot or near a child’s mouth. Signs of infection may begin about 24 to 48 hours after the injury. They include redness around the area or red streaks leading away, swelling, warmth or tenderness, pus, fever of 101° F or higher and tender or swollen lymph nodes.Final notesDeep cuts can sever or damage major blood vessels, nerves or tendons, so it is important to know the signs of a serious laceration. In general, beconcerned more with cuts to the face, hands, chest, abdomen or back, which have the potential to be more critical than lacerations to other areas*9\303\2*

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