While many soft tissue lacerations only require at-home interventions, others may necessitate urgent care treatment. Papercuts, minor knee scrapes, and certain insect bites respond well to home treatments, however, deep soft tissue lacerations such as puncture wounds require urgent health care interventions. Here are some effective treatment options you may receive at an urgent care center if you sustain a soft tissue laceration.
Irrigation And Cleaning
The healthcare provider will deep clean your wound to make sure that it is as bacteria and debris-free as possible. Failure to cleanse the wound may result in a serious infection, and because of this, you should try to clean your laceration as much as possible at home before going to the urgent care facility. If, however, your soft tissue laceration reveals muscle, bone, or tendon tissue, or if the wound is bleeding profusely or is especially painful, seeking prompt emergency treatment may be a higher priority than washing your laceration.
Sterile saline solution and povidone-iodine are often used to irrigate and cleanse soft tissue lacerations. However, the choice of cleansing agent may be dependent upon your wound type and whether or not you have allergies to povidone-iodine products.
Suturing And Booster
If needed, the physician will suture or stitch up your laceration to reduce bleeding, decrease scarring, lower the risk for infection, and promote healing. In addition, you will be asked when you had your last tetanus shot because if it was longer than the specified recommended time period, then you may need a tetanus booster. Tetanus boosters are administered after deep puncture wounds to lower the risk of tetanus, which is a rare but serious infection.
After your wound has been closed, the urgent care physician may apply antibiotic ointment to the affected area and prescribe oral antibiotics to further lower your risk for both a local infection of the wound and a secondary systemic infection.
After your soft tissue laceration has been treated, you will receive an instruction sheet before you are discharged, which will include the recommendation to follow up with your primary care physician and to report any signs and symptoms of infection such as increased pain, redness, drainage, or inflammation.
If you sustain a soft tissue laceration, seek urgent medical care as soon as possible. Doing so will lower your risk for infection, excessive bleeding, and permanent soft tissue damage as a result of scarring. As noted above, if your wound is bleeding profusely, or if your muscle, tendons, or bones are exposed, seek treatment at the nearest hospital emergency room. For more information, contact a service like Medicross Clinic & Urgent Care.