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First Aid For Surgical Wounds

Overview Of Surgical Wounds

  • Surgical wounds are slits (cuts) created through the skin while undergoing a surgical procedure.
  • The edges of a wound can be held firmly together with closure strips, staples, surgical glue or stitches.
  • Unique surgical bandages can be obtained to soak up fluid from seeping wounds.
  • Occasionally surgical wounds can split open before they are fully healed. Your health practitioner will direct you on what to do if this occurs.
  • Always sanitize or rinse your hands prior to changing your bandages and follow the instructions your doctor gave you to treat the wound.
  • Monitor how the wound is coming along and if you have any worries about the wound, phone your doctor. Your doctor will direct you with regards to the duration of how long it will take to fully heal.
    Surgical wounds are slits (cuts) created through the skin while undergoing a surgical procedure.

    Surgical wounds are slits (cuts) created through the skin while undergoing a surgical procedure.

When To See Your Doctor

  • You observe changes surrounding the wound, like redness, more pain, tenderness, inflammation or blood loss.
  • The wound has split open, or got deeper or bigger.
  • Seeping from the wound amplifies.
  • Any discharge from the wound becomes thick, alters in color or smell which is unpleasant.
  • You have a high fever.

See your doctor if:

  • You see any signs of contamination, such as redness, heat or inflammation.
  • The wound seems like it is not healing.
  • The wound appears to be very deep.
  • The wound was produced by an animal, snake or human bite.
  • The wound is infected with dirt or saliva.
  • You believe that a foreign object is still lodged in the skin.
  • You might have to get a tetanus injection or booster.

Skin Tears

Phone the doctor if:

  • The tear appears very deep.
  • A large region of tissue can be viewed beneath the skin.
  • You notice any signs of infection, such as swelling, puffiness, discharge, pain or high temperature.
  • The wound persists to bleed.
  • The wound seems to stop healing fully.
  • The skin around the wound becomes macerated which means the tissue starts to break down.

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