Abrasion

If you’ve ever skinned your knee, stubbed your toe, scraped your elbow, slid on the carpet or taken a small tumble, then you’ve experienced what is known as an abrasion. Most often simply a minor injury, an abrasion is caused when your skin comes into contact with any rough or rigged surface, almost always with some sort of movement. Whether you’re running and you fall or a moving object collides with you, if there is damage to outer layers of your skin, then you have suffered an abrasion.

Most often with abrasions there is little to no bleeding involved and the chances of scarring is minimal. An abrasion isn’t as serious as a laceration, in which a deeper wound occurs and there is typically much more bleeding involved. However, some abrasions (an avulsion, for instance) can be very serious, and these occur when multiple layers of skin are damaged or even removed. In situations like these, scarring is almost certain.

Abrasion

Run-of-the-mill abrasions are most commonly referred to as “burns,” as in rug burns, rope burns, carpet burns, etc. These types of abrasions can be treated by simply cleaning the wounds and using a topical cream or ointment like Neosporin to help it heal quickly and to eliminate or at least minimize any pain or stinging sensations. More serious abrasions will most often require treatments including dressing the wounds and antibiotics.

As with most wounds, the healing time of abrasions will vary based on the severity of the injury and the methods of treatment. A mild, treated abrasion could take merely a few days to heal, whereas an untreated wound could take more than a week. The deeper the wound, the longer it will take to heal, obviously, so that is why cleaning the wound in a timely manner and using the right antibiotics is of the utmost necessity. Otherwise the wound could become infected and require further medical attention.

Worried about your Abrasion? Get it checked. Call +65 9862 3608 / +65 9137 7787 (24 Hours Hotline)

Crush Injury

When a part of the body is caught between two objects that are being pushed together by a high pressure, the resulting squeeze will leave that person with a crush injury. Most often accidental, crush injuries are responsible for broken bones, severe bruising, bleeding, lacerations and compartment syndrome. Crush injuries are common in car accidents, falls and in any situation that can lead to a structure collapsing. But there are also varying degrees of crush injuries, from slamming a finger in a door to limbs being trapped and crushed for an extended period of time.

Crush Injury

Symptoms

Depending on the severity of the crush injury, the symptoms will differ. For a minor injury (i.e. a finger in a door or dropping something on a toe) there can be bruising, lacerations and moderate pain. However, the recovery time is significantly shorter than a major crush injury, as is the degree of the symptoms. In the case of a major crush injury, there is often serious damage below the skin, including tissues, organs, muscles and bones. A crush injury will often cut off the flow of blood in the damaged appendage, leading to serious muscle and tissue damage, as well as numbness and possible paralysis. There is also a much greater chance for infection in the damaged tissues and muscles. The force of the impact can also cause serious damage to the skin, in some cases completely removing layers and leaving the wound exposed to infection and deformity. Infection can lead to amputation in extreme cases.

In many cases of crush injuries, compartment syndrome will take place. When the muscles and tissues are deprived of blood for too long after a crush injury accident occurs, there is a strong chance that the nerves will become severely damaged and the victim will experience muscle death. While most common in crush injuries to the legs, compartment syndrome can occur in any part of the body that is crushed and trapped between two objects for too long. When compartment syndrome is settling in, the first sign is extreme pain, followed by the tingling sensation of “pins and needles” that a limb experiences when it is “asleep” and then eventually paralysis of the limb. Once the paralysis has set in, the pulse will be nonexistent in the affected limb. A visual sign of compartment syndrome is swollen skin with a shiny appearance.

Treatment

In the case of minor crush injuries, medical attention shouldn’t be necessary. Simply clean the wound with fresh water, especially if bleeding is present, to avoid infection. Apply ice to the point of injury and keep it compressed to alleviate pain. Should there be considerable swelling and limited or no mobility in the affected extremity, medical attention may be necessary in order to obtain an X-ray and determine if there is a break. Fractures are often a cause of compartment syndrome.
If the wound is considerably greater with moderate to heavy bleeding, immediate medical attention is required, and a tetanus shot will be necessary, as well as other antibiotics. In serious crush injuries, in which compartment syndrome has already set in or is inevitable, immediate surgery (most likely a fasciotomy) will be required to eliminate the pressure on the muscles and nerves. If the injury is not treated immediately, and compartment syndrome exists for considerable time, then amputation may be required.

Many cases of serious crush injury will require multiple surgeries to complete nerve and tendon repairs.

Having Crush Injury?? Call +65 9862 3608 / +65 9137 7787 (24 Hours Hotline)

Bone Fracture

A fracture, also referred to as a bone fracture, FRX, FX, Fx or # is a medical condition where the continuity of the bone is broke. A significant percentage of bone fractures occur because of high force impact or stress; however, a fracture may also be the result of some medical conditions which weaken the bones, for example osteoporosis, some cancers or osteogeneris imperfecta. A fracture caused by a medical condition is known as apathological fracture.

The word break is commonly used by lay (non-professional) people. Among health care professionals, especially bone specialists, such as orthopedic surgeons,break is a much less common term when talking about bones.

A crack (not only a break) in the bone is also known as a fracture. Fractures can occur in any bone in the body. There are several different ways in which a bone can fracture; for example a clean break to the bone that does not damage surrounding tissue or tear through the skin is known as a closed fracture or a simple fracture. On the other hand, one that damages surrounding skin or tissue is known as a compound fracture or an open fracture. Compound or open fractures are generally more serious than simple fractures, with a much higher risk of infection.

Most human bones are surprisingly strong and can generally stand up to fairly strong impacts or forces. However, if that force is too powerful, or there is something wrong with the bone, it can fracture.

The older we get the less force our bones can withstand. Approximately 50% of women and about 20% of men have a fracture after they are 50 years old (Source: National Health Service, UK).

Because children’s bones are more elastic, when they do have fractures they tend to be different. Children also have growth plates at the end of their bones – areas of growing bone – which may sometimes be damaged.

To fracture means “to break”.

A fracture (fx) is “a break, especially the breaking of a bone or cartilage.”Some different types of fracture:

    • Avulsion fracture - a muscle or ligament pulls on the bone, fracturing it.
    • Comminuted fracture - the bone is shattered into many pieces.
    • Compression (crush) fracture - generally occurs in the spongy bone in the spine. For example, the front portion of a vertebra in the spine may collapse due to osteoporosis.
    • Fracture dislocation - a joint becomes dislocated, and one of the bones of the joint has a fracture.
    • Greenstick fracture - the bone partly fractures on one side, but does not break completely because the rest of the bone can bend. More common among children, whose bones are softer and more elastic.
    • Hairline fracture - a partial fracture of the bone. Often this type of fracture is harder to detect.
    • Impacted fracture - when the bone is fractured, one fragment of bone goes into another.
    • Longitudinal fracture - the break is along the length of the bone.
    • Oblique fracture - A fracture that is diagonal to a bone’s long axis.
    • Pathological fracture - when an underlying disease or condition has already weakened the bone, resulting in a fracture (bone fracture caused by an underlying disease/condition that weakened the bone).
    • Spiral fracture - A fracture where at least one part of the bone has been twisted.
    • Stress fracture - more common among athletes. A bone breaks because of repeated stresses and strains.
    • Torus (buckle) fracture - bone deforms but does not crack. More common in children. It is painful but stable.
  • Transverse fracture - a straight break right across a bone.

What are the signs and symptoms of a bone fracture?

A symptom is something the patient feels and reports, while a sign is something other people, such as the doctor detect. For example, pain may be a symptom while a rash may be a sign. The signs and symptoms of a fracture vary according to which bone is affected, the patient’s age and general health, as well as the severity of the injury. However, they may include some of the following:

  • Pain
  • Swelling
  • Bruising
  • Discolored skin around the affected area
  • Angulation – the affected area may be bent at an unusual angle
  • The patient is unable to put weight on the injured area
  • The patient cannot move the affected area
  • The affected bone or joint may have a grating sensation
  • If it is an open fracture there may be bleeding