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5 Symptoms Your Puncture Wound Is More Serious Than You Think

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5 Symptoms Your Puncture Wound Is More Serious Than You Think

Puncture wounds are among the most frequent types of injuries. While most puncture wounds are not severe, some can lead to more serious complications.

Knowing the symptoms of a potentially severe puncture wound is crucial to ensure you get the necessary care.

Puncture Wound Symptoms You Shouldn't Ignore

If you observe any of the following five symptoms, it's time to seek medical attention for your puncture wound:

1. Continuous Bleeding

You need to apply gentle, direct pressure on the wound site to stop the bleeding. But if the flow does not stop after 15 minutes, this could be a sign of an arterial puncture, a more severe type of wound.

An arterial puncture is when the main artery that carries blood from the heart is pierced. This can cause significant blood loss and requires immediate medical treatment.

If you are on blood thinners or have another medical condition preventing your blood from clotting properly, this is also a reason to go to the ER or an urgent care center.

2. Deep Wound

A deep puncture wound penetrates through the flesh and possibly into the bone. A deep cut is more likely to get infected, leading to complications. If you have a deep puncture wound, this is something that a doctor will need to evaluate.

Other than depth, the location of the wound is also essential. A puncture wound penetrating a joint or tendon can be severe, as it can lead to long-term damage.

If the location of the wound is on the head, neck, chest or abdomen, internal damage may also occur.

3. Object Still Lodged in the Wound

If the piece of glass, nail or wood (the object that caused the puncture wound) is still lodged in the wound, this is a sign that you must go to the hospital immediately. Leaving an object in the wound can increase your risk of infection.

If you cannot remove the object, do not force it out, as this can cause even more damage.

4. Dirty Wound

If the item that caused the puncture wound was dirty, your risk of infection increases. Tetanus is a severe infection that can occur from contaminated puncture wounds. If you have not had a tetanus shot in the last 10 years, discuss updating your immunizations with your emergency medicine physician.

5. Caused By Animal or Human Bite

Puncture wounds caused by an animal or human bites also carry a higher risk of infection. If the injury is from an animal bite, it's essential to clean it thoroughly and seek medical attention, as you may need a rabies shot. If the puncture wound is from a human bite, you also require proper health care, as human bites can transmit serious diseases.

First-Aid for Puncture Wounds

Even if you don't have any of the above puncture wound symptoms, properly taking care of your wound is vital to prevent infection.

Here are some tips for first aid:

  • Clean the wound with soap and water.
  • Apply pressure to stop the bleeding.
  • Apply a bandage.
  • Repeat the above steps as necessary.

Seek Medical Care for Serious Puncture Wound Symptoms Right Away

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