First Aid For Wounds
1 AnswerDr. Kathleen Handal, MD , Emergency Medicine, answeredWhen a body part is partially or completely amputated, quick first aid action is required to help ensure the best possible repair. Tissue can be preserved for up to 18 hours if properly cared for; however, reattachment has the best chance of being successful if done within 4 to 6 hours but can be done up to 24 hours after amputation. Follow these first aid instructions for the amputated body part if you ever encounter an amputation:
- Do not make the judgment that the body part is too small or too damaged to be reattached.
- Do not throw away any body part, no matter how small.
- Do not separate amputated part from victim.
- Do not place amputated part directly on ice or in water.
- Do not use dry ice to preserve a severed body part.
- Check for responsiveness and breathing.
- Give first aid for bleeding.
- Monitor and treat for shock if present.
- Care for amputated part(s): Clean amputated part, if necessary, with sterile or clean water, then cover and wrap in sterile dressing. Place in a sealed plastic bag. Place bag in another container with chilled or ice water. Label with victim's name.
- Keep the amputated part with the victim at all times.
- Put the wrapped part in a plastic bag and seal the bag.
- Keep the part cold and bag cool by placing it in a larger bag or container of an ice and water slurry, not on ice alone and not on dry ice, if possible, but do not freeze.
- Be sure the part is taken to the hospital with the person. Doctors may be able to reattach it.
1 AnswerIf part of the body has been torn or cut off, call 9-1-1 or the local emergency number, then try to find the part and wrap it in sterile gauze or any clean material, such as a washcloth.
1 AnswerDiscovery Health answered
In some cases, it is possible to reattach a limb. If you suffer a severed limb, be sure to rinse off the detached body part, wrap it in a moist cloth and store it in a sealed plastic bag. Then, place the sealed plastic bag into ice water and transport it to the hospital. If you do this, the limb should remain viable for approximately 18 hours.
2 AnswersDr. Stuart A. Linder, MD , Plastic Surgery, answeredAll knife cuts should be taken seriously with children. Not only should the cut be attended to, but a booster tetanus shot may also be necessary. It is important that both the plastic surgery and the pediatrician or emergency physician be involved. If any risk or sign of infection, then antibiotics may be warranted as well.
1 AnswerDr. Michael Roizen, MD , Internal Medicine, answeredSeashell, barnacle, or coral cuts can cause a serious infection. Wash, disinfect and talk to your doc about antibiotic treatment—and do it promptly. Don't ignore it.
2 AnswersDr. Stuart A. Linder, MD , Plastic Surgery, answeredSerious cuts should be dealt with immediately. First, if bleeding is occurring, use immediate compression and seek emergency room attention. Next, if the laceration requires sutures, consider a board-certified plastic surgeon. Small cuts may only require cleansing with hydrogen peroxide and antibiotic ointments. If any doubt, consult your physician.
2 AnswersStacy Wiegman, PharmD , Pharmacy, answeredIf your child has a cut, wash your hands with soap, then clean out the cut with mild soap and cool water, use gentle pressure to stop any bleeding and apply antibacterial ointment and a clean bandage.
If your child’s cut is severe -- the wound is more than a quarter inch deep, the bleeding won’t stop after about 20 minutes or if it was caused by a rusty object -- call your doctor. If the cut is bleeding badly, call 911.
- Secure the end of the bandage in place with a turn of the bandage. Wrap the bandage around the body part until the dressing is completely covered and the bandage extends several inches beyond the dressing. Tie or tape the bandage in place.
- Do not cover fingers or toes. By keeping these parts uncovered, you will be able to see if the bandage is too tight. If fingers or toes become cold or begin to turn pale, blue, or ashen, the bandage is too tight and should be loosened slightly.
- Apply additional dressings and another bandage if blood soaks through the first bandage. Do not remove the blood-soaked bandages and dressings. Disturbing them may disrupt the formation of a clot and restart the bleeding.