Insect Bites and Hand Infections

Hands are a common site for insect and spider bites. Not all bites are dangerous and result in tissue damage. Most bites will result in swelling, redness, itchiness and pain on movement of the finger or hand. The use of over the counter sting remedies to reduce inflammation, together with icing and elevation will suffice in the majority of cases. Those bites which result in skin changes (blue, black or yellow areas), which indicate tissue damage, may require closer attention. Toxins from the bite result in tissue death, and once underlying tissue in the hand has a lack of blood supply it is prone to developing a secondary infection. At this stage antibiotic treatment, antiseptic soaks a

How to Manage Hot Water Burns

Most superficial and superficial partial thickness burn wounds will heal on their own. These are typically hot water or hot liquid contact burns, steam burns and such like, where contact times with the heat source is minimal and the heat of the substance dissipates quickly. Once the epithelial layer of the skin has been injured its response is to form a blister. Taking care of blisters can be tricky. If they haven't burst then leaving them alone is an option and simply applying a topical ointment antiseptic/antimicrobial ointment (bactroban/fucidin) will suffice. However, if the blister is large it might catch onto clothing and tear; or the blister may spontaneously open. Once the blist

How do you store an amputated digit?

A right handed factory worker was injured with an circular saw which left him with an amputated index finger in what is called zone II or "no-mans land". There are many considerations when faced with amputations and replant surgery, and I would like to touch upon a few important points here : When a limb part is amputated, storage of the amputated part is important. The part should ideally be placed in a plastic bag and then the plastic bag in another bag with ice so that the amputated part is kept cool. Direct contact with ice is not advised and nor is submerging the part in a fluid. The discussion around replantation is complex and therefore requires a conversation with a trained hand s

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