Wounds are unpredictable. Depending on the patient, wounds can change overnight. Many people have misconceptions when caring for their open wounds. Dr. Amy Barko worked at a wound care center for six years where she gained the title as a wound care physician. In a recent interview with Dr. Barko, she shared some expert advice for treating open wounds.
1. Should I soak the wound? NO. Never soak the wound. There are minimal amounts of wounds that ever need soaking. For instance, an ingrown toenail requires a soak.
2. Characterize the wound? YES. Now what the heck does that mean? Examine the size and depth of the wound. If it is an open wound, it becomes vulnerable to dirt, germs and bacteria. That is why you should visit a doctor or trauma care specialist for treatment.
3. Let it heal on it’s own? NO. Always go see a wound care specialist within 24 hours. Most deep wounds will not heal on their own. Waiting too long will result in infection, hospitalization, or amputation. The Amputee Coalition of America estimates that there are 185,000 new lower extremity amputations each year, just within the United States and an estimated population of 2 million American amputees.
4. Should I use peroxide to clean the wound? NO. Peroxide can cause irritation. Instead, use a diluted soap or just clean tap water.
5. Dress the wound? YES. Keep the wound covered by applying a dressing. This will prevent further bacteria from entering the wound until it can be properly cared for.
Because we take wound care seriously, we are committed to getting our patients into the office within 24 hours if they have an open wound. We recommend coming to see a wound care specialist here at the office for expert care.
If you have an open wound and need more information about how to help care for your feet call our office at 859-264-1411 or make an online appointment.