Author Topic: Lacerations [Gashes]: Stitches [Sutures], Glue, Something Else, Nothing?  (Read 11760 times)

YoopreMama

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Forgive me if there's a thread on this...I didn't see one...

Regarding children, mostly, how do you all determine if a gash/wound needs a trip to the doctor for examination/stitches, glue, etc?

For what kinds of wounds are glues better?  What can you do at home when something happens (like a gash on the forehead)?

What are the best analgesics to use?  Topical?  Needles? 

Would love to hear experiences/suggestions...for future reference, of course!

Offline healthybratt

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Re: Lacerations [Gashes]: Stitches [Sutures], Glue, Something Else, Nothing?
« Reply #1 on: February 15, 2008, 09:40:06 AM »
I've never had an opportunity to test this theory nor have I researched it, but I've often thought that if you sutured yourself at home asap after a wound occurs, you wouldn't need any analgesics or numbing meds because the endorphins are flowing.

I remember grinding gravel into my hands from a bicycle crash when I was young and to get it out, I just scrubbed it vigorously with a plastic Brillo type thing for dishes.  It didn't really hurt per say because the pain from the scrape and the endorphins were pumping.

My son had stitches in his brow when he was a year old and it was a difficult and stressful situation for him and I was glad to have the docs help but if it had been me and say an arm wound, I'm thinking I wouldn't be adverse to trying a stitch or two on myself when the wound and natural pain relief was fresh.   :-\

I suppose this doesn't really give you anything concrete, but it's another avenue to pursue in research, maybe ???
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Offline *MommaJo*

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Re: Lacerations [Gashes]: Stitches [Sutures], Glue, Something Else, Nothing?
« Reply #3 on: February 15, 2008, 09:44:08 AM »
Oh boy, did I need this thread about 19 hours ago.  My boys were jumping off their bed onto a mattress and the 2 year old landed on a toy tractor.  (guess Mom wasn't paying attention...  :-[ )
It is about an inch long and had some depth and width to it.  It's right on top of his head in the middle of his long hair.  I didn't know how to get the butterfly strips to stick with all that hair around, so my dad talked me into shaving his head directly around the cut.   :(  
I got it to stick and hopefully close together enough.  (I haven't looked at it yet today)  I called dh, who is working out of town this week, and he said, "NEVER CUT THE HAIR AROUND A GASH!, you could get hair into the wound".  I didn't know how else to do it.  And I, obviously, hadn't thought of that.
So, today I went to Rite Aid and got some of that glue stuff.  It's called Skin Shield Liquid Bandage.  I'm sure there'll be a 'next time' when I'll need it.


« Last Edit: February 15, 2008, 09:46:35 AM by *MommaJo* »

YoopreMama

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Re: Lacerations [Gashes]: Stitches [Sutures], Glue, Something Else, Nothing?
« Reply #4 on: February 15, 2008, 10:10:37 AM »
Good ideas there, HB.  Can't wait to check out those links you posted...

A friend just delivered a baby w/ its head transverse and tore pretty badly.  She had no clue...she must have been flying on those endorphins.  The midwife wanted her to go in and get stitched, but she didn't go until about 14 hours later, with a second call from the midwife.  The ER doc couldn't believe what she saw (they usually only stitch up to 12 hours postpartum)..it was up in her vag*na, 4th degree and required 40+ stitches.  Ouch!

MJ--I have butterfly bandages but I guess I never really thought of using them for cuts--they must pull the skin together well.  Hmm...and liquid Band-Aid at the local store...might want to stock up on some!  Spring is coming, and with it all kinds of owies--we have an award for the 1st skinned knee of the year... :D

Offline Roehrmomma

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Re: Lacerations [Gashes]: Stitches [Sutures], Glue, Something Else, Nothing?
« Reply #5 on: February 15, 2008, 10:10:48 AM »
My Patrick has had a few times then stitches should have been used so we just put on a steri strip. It worked awesome. Just don't do it to tight. That was done once. He wanted it tight to not come apart so it could heal right. On the ends his skin slowly moved back and left his top few layers with the strip. :P 

I think generally staples are used on the head. Glue on the face to cut down on scaring and stitches elsewhere.

Em

Offline MommyGus

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Re: Lacerations [Gashes]: Stitches [Sutures], Glue, Something Else, Nothing?
« Reply #6 on: February 15, 2008, 10:14:02 AM »
I had a friend who gashed her head open when she was little and her parents tied the hair on either side of the gash together in a knot.  They kept it clean and it healed fine.  

I have always had success with butterfly bandages.  The couple of times we have gone in to get stitches it was so traumatic for the kid, that I started cleaning wounds well with peroxide and using butterfly bandages and watching it for a few hours to see if it is staying together.  This has always been fine.  This gives me time to let the kid calm down, and better judge if stitches are necessary.  I don't know about other moms, but my judgment isn't very good when I am looking at a screaming, crying kid with blood everywhere.

There is one thing my mom did when I was a kid and gashed my foot open pretty bad.  She didn't know what to do, and remembered reading something about raw carrot taking the pain out of a wound.  She grated some up and put it on my foot.  I was about 11 at the time and I thought it was weird, but it felt better.  The next day before school I asked her not to put carrot on it, since I thought everyone would laugh at me.  When  I came home I asked for the carrot again, b/c it felt sooooo much better.  It had new pink skin on it within a week no scab or anything left at all.  So needless to say I use carrot on our kids if they get scraped up. :)
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Offline healthybratt

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Re: Lacerations [Gashes]: Stitches [Sutures], Glue, Something Else, Nothing?
« Reply #7 on: February 15, 2008, 10:16:06 AM »
I think glue and liquid bandages are overrated.  They might work in an emergency and I've been known to superglue a vicious cut on a finger or knuckle for lack of better treatment, but, sutures (stitches) allow the wound to breath and heal where as coating them with adhesive junk seals in blood, infections and doesn't allow the wound to dry and heal properly.  JMO.
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YoopreMama

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Re: Lacerations [Gashes]: Stitches [Sutures], Glue, Something Else, Nothing?
« Reply #8 on: February 15, 2008, 10:20:26 AM »
WOW!  This is such helpful info!

Carrots?!

I forgot about staples...

I knew you all would have good things to share!  :-*

Interesting thought on the liquid bandages, HB.  You sure know a lot about a lot of things!  ;D

Offline Siege

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Re: Lacerations [Gashes]: Stitches [Sutures], Glue, Something Else, Nothing?
« Reply #9 on: February 15, 2008, 10:26:53 AM »
We have had stitches and liquid stitches a few times in out house...boy, you know.

One son fell on a Pamper*d Ch*f piza stone rack (if you have ever seen one you will see that this is not a sharp object) and it went almost all the way through his cheek! Huge hole, but since it did not go all they way they were able to glue it together. It healed pretty well, just a small scar, but it is right where a dimple would be, so he now has the cutest little dimple. Another hit is eye and had liquid stitches, another hit is eye and had to have regular stitches (too long for liquid). One hit his lip and gashed the corner open. He would not have had to have stitches except for the fact that it was about 1/16 of an inch from the corner and was ready to tear more, this would have led to him opening his mouth and tearing his cheek apart.

Let's see....once one fell and his teeth went all the way through his lip....it was BAD, but they sent my home and said their was nothing they could do. It healed real fast. So far no broken bones....thank the Lord. CJ
« Last Edit: February 16, 2008, 05:05:34 AM by Siege »

Offline Roehrmomma

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Re: Lacerations [Gashes]: Stitches [Sutures], Glue, Something Else, Nothing?
« Reply #10 on: February 15, 2008, 10:35:15 AM »
Siege

Your boys remind me of what my husband was like as a kid stitches 6 times by the time he was 6.

In 6 yrs of marriage he has had stitches twice. 2 broken bones. 3rd degree burn and several 'steri strip moments'. ::)


Em

Offline *MommaJo*

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Re: Lacerations [Gashes]: Stitches [Sutures], Glue, Something Else, Nothing?
« Reply #11 on: February 15, 2008, 01:14:44 PM »
.....MJ--I have butterfly bandages but I guess I never really thought of using them for cuts--they must pull the skin together well.  Hmm...and liquid Band-Aid at the local store...might want to stock up on some!  Spring is coming, and with it all kinds of owies--we have an award for the 1st skinned knee of the year... :D

I thought that's what butterfly bandages were for.....  ???
I don't know much about first aid.

And, HB, totally good point about the wound not getting air.  I'll have to think about that a little more....



YoopreMama

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Re: Lacerations [Gashes]: Stitches [Sutures], Glue, Something Else, Nothing?
« Reply #12 on: February 15, 2008, 01:22:03 PM »
MJ--LOL...I had NO CLUE what they were for!  :D I figured some odd body part...???  I've used them, but obviously not the right way!  Good thing we have this thread going!

Offline stymie

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Re: Lacerations [Gashes]: Stitches [Sutures], Glue, Something Else, Nothing?
« Reply #13 on: February 15, 2008, 04:00:44 PM »
MJ--I have butterfly bandages but I guess I never really thought of using them for cuts--they must pull the skin together well.  Hmm...and liquid Band-Aid at the local store...might want to stock up on some!  Spring is coming, and with it all kinds of owies--we have an award for the 1st skinned knee of the year... :D

My Dad was a butcher and often had deep cuts in his fingers.  He very rarely had stitches.  My Mom typically used a "butterfly" to pull it closed.  They aren't the "butterfly bandages" that you can buy now.  It was just some medical tape or waterproof adhesive tape (I think it typically comes in 1/2" width) that was cut to look like a butterfly.  You leave the two ends at full width and trim the center to a narrow strip.  The narrow piece doesn't need to be very long.  Just long enough to go across the cut.  You put one of the thick ends on one side of the cut, pull it closed, and then adhere the other end of the tape on the other side of the cut.  It holds the wound closed pretty well, but the wound can still get air.  I even remember them using two or three placed next to each other when it was a long cut.  Of course, this will only work if you can get the area clean and dry enough for the tape to adhere.

If you worried about scarring, you are probably better off with stitches.

Offline healthybratt

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Re: Lacerations [Gashes]: Stitches [Sutures], Glue, Something Else, Nothing?
« Reply #14 on: February 15, 2008, 04:06:05 PM »
Steri-strips work pretty well too.  I kinda forgot.  They used these on my C-sect scar after they remove the staples.  It has to be done bleeding but the nice thing about these is they stick really well and just peel away as you wash (in the shower or bath) without having to pull them off which can open your wound.  They are paper so they breath better than plastic.

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Offline ruhamah

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Re: Lacerations [Gashes]: Stitches [Sutures], Glue, Something Else, Nothing?
« Reply #15 on: February 15, 2008, 05:38:06 PM »
I have used super glue to hold the butterfly in place not on the wound, that works well the wound can breathe and the bandage stays in place esp. with and very very very very very active little boy!
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Offline healthybratt

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Re: Lacerations [Gashes]: Stitches [Sutures], Glue, Something Else, Nothing?
« Reply #16 on: February 15, 2008, 06:19:04 PM »
I have used super glue to hold the butterfly in place not on the wound, that works well the wound can breathe and the bandage stays in place esp. with and very very very very very active little boy!
Intriguing.  I never thought of using SG that way.   ;D
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Offline ruhamah

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Re: Lacerations [Gashes]: Stitches [Sutures], Glue, Something Else, Nothing?
« Reply #17 on: February 15, 2008, 06:30:16 PM »
I have used super glue to hold the butterfly in place not on the wound, that works well the wound can breathe and the bandage stays in place esp. with and very very very very very active little boy!
Intriguing.  I never thought of using SG that way.   ;D

The ER Dr taught me that trick!
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YoopreMama

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Offline yoopermom2

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Re: Lacerations [Gashes]: Stitches [Sutures], Glue, Something Else, Nothing?
« Reply #19 on: February 18, 2008, 11:50:09 AM »
Anyone remove stitches?  Seems simple enough but not knowing how to sew I could use any tips.  Thanks! :)
Pic:
1 - night it happened - 8 stitches at the ER
2 - next day
3 - day 4
Chris & Kelly with Jake 13, Hannah 12,
Emma 9, Daba 7, Nora 6, Tarike 3, Dade 2

Offline Mrs. B

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Re: Lacerations [Gashes]: Stitches [Sutures], Glue, Something Else, Nothing?
« Reply #20 on: February 18, 2008, 12:21:27 PM »
Anyone remove stitches?  Seems simple enough but not knowing how to sew I could use any tips.  Thanks! :)
Pic:
1 - night it happened - 8 stitches at the ER
2 - next day
3 - day 4
Are you sure they are ready to come out?  The usually want them in for longer than 4 days... It's better to leave them in longer than needed than to take them out too soon...
Are they the ones that even need cutting out? 
It is pretty straight forward to take them out.. They are sewn 1 at a time, so you just need to cut each one out individually and gently pull so that the remaining suture comes thru (make sure you pull the end with the knot)...
The cut looks like it is healing well... good luck!

Offline MommyGus

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Re: Lacerations [Gashes]: Stitches [Sutures], Glue, Something Else, Nothing?
« Reply #21 on: February 18, 2008, 03:27:43 PM »
Quote
They are sewn 1 at a time, so you just need to cut each one out individually and gently pull so that the remaining suture comes thru (make sure you pull the end with the knot)

Yes, be sure the knot doesn't go through the would, as it would hurt, and drag germs through and cause infection.  Don't be in too big of a hurry to take them out though.  
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Offline Mrs. B

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Re: Lacerations [Gashes]: Stitches [Sutures], Glue, Something Else, Nothing?
« Reply #22 on: February 18, 2008, 03:52:23 PM »
Quote
They are sewn 1 at a time, so you just need to cut each one out individually and gently pull so that the remaining suture comes thru (make sure you pull the end with the knot)

Yes, be sure the knot doesn't go through the would, as it would hurt, and drag germs through and cause infection.  .  
This is what I was trying to say... you just did a much better job than I believe I did....

Offline yoopermom2

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Re: Lacerations [Gashes]: Stitches [Sutures], Glue, Something Else, Nothing?
« Reply #23 on: February 18, 2008, 04:18:26 PM »
The Dr.'s instructions said to "come back" day 5 to have them removed.  They only do the stitches that dissolve if it's under the skin or internal, least that's what they told me when I asked.  They don't like questions though do they?  ::)  I understand the reason for leaving them in but also you don't want them to heal in there.  They said 5 days and it seems right to me.  The gash appears to be healing very well and we've had no pain or issues with it.  We'll see about scarring...but that's our Emma, she's rough and tough and that's our girl.  I have a nurse friend that I'll have "assist" me in this, as Emma probably won't think it's too fun.  She's a good girl but after the horrible experience in the ER I'm not sure what to expect when taking them out.  Does it hurt at all?
Thanks for all the advice! :)
Chris & Kelly with Jake 13, Hannah 12,
Emma 9, Daba 7, Nora 6, Tarike 3, Dade 2

Offline ruhamah

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Re: Lacerations [Gashes]: Stitches [Sutures], Glue, Something Else, Nothing?
« Reply #24 on: February 19, 2008, 02:40:20 AM »
I have taken our children's and other peoples children's out and non of them have complained about it hurting at all. I think it feels like a tug on the skin. I am glad your nurse friend is taking them out. My nurse friend taught me how to do it so I would not have to go back to the Dr. to have them do it.
It is not hard at all once you know the trick.

R
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Offline prolifeguyswife

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Re: Lacerations [Gashes]: Stitches [Sutures], Glue, Something Else, Nothing?
« Reply #25 on: February 23, 2009, 07:59:46 PM »
My four year old fell at the public pool today and cut her chin. DH didn't take a close enough look at it, and now (2 1/2 hours later), realizes it needs stitches.

He butterflied it closed, and we would take her in, but is it too late to get stitches? Is there a window of opportunity to help it heal? She's going to have a bad scar on her chin unless we do something - we're just not sure what the 'something' is.

Offline herbalmom

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Re: Lacerations [Gashes]: Stitches [Sutures], Glue, Something Else, Nothing?
« Reply #26 on: February 23, 2009, 08:30:24 PM »
My four year old fell at the public pool today and cut her chin. DH didn't take a close enough look at it, and now (2 1/2 hours later), realizes it needs stitches.

He butterflied it closed, and we would take her in, but is it too late to get stitches? Is there a window of opportunity to help it heal? She's going to have a bad scar on her chin unless we do something - we're just not sure what the 'something' is.

Is it on the underside the chin or on her face? That may affect your decision. I don't know what the maximum time for stitches is.

The info on this thread should help. Be sure to look at what I said about my DS & dad in reply #7.

Knee experts?

I wouldn't be surprised if HB actually merges the thread b/c there is so much overlap between them.

HTH Blessing ~herbalmom


Offline prolifeguyswife

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Re: Lacerations [Gashes]: Stitches [Sutures], Glue, Something Else, Nothing?
« Reply #27 on: February 23, 2009, 10:14:09 PM »
Thanks, Herbalmom! You're such a blessing on this site  :) . It's right under her chin, so you can just see a glimpse of it when you look at her face. The thread was really helpful, now we're just trying to decide if we should put her through the trauma of stitches, when we know it can heal on its own.

Offline ~CKMom~

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Re: Lacerations [Gashes]: Stitches [Sutures], Glue, Something Else, Nothing?
« Reply #28 on: February 24, 2009, 03:36:21 AM »

How Long Do I Have to Get Stitches?
If stitches are necessary, you will need to keep the wound closed with butterfly enclosures until you can get to an emergency room or urgent care clinic. Remember always, keep it closed and keep it clean.
How much time you have depends on a number of factors. If the wound has a high likelihood of contamination, then you have about six (6) hours to get stitches before the wound will become too contaminated to stitch. Some wounds are not generally stitched because of severe contamination, human or animal bites are good examples.

Wounds with less chance of contamination may be stitched as long as eight (8) hours after the injury. Depending on the wound, scarring can be minimized as long as 24 hours after the injury, but the longer you wait, the less likely that stitches will be possible.
Maybe this will help you decide.  Sometimes they use the glue i/o stititches, but it just depends on where it is and how big it is. 

Offline Julie G

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Re: Lacerations [Gashes]: Stitches [Sutures], Glue, Something Else, Nothing?
« Reply #29 on: August 10, 2010, 07:41:58 AM »
Well, my guy had a big HARD crash on his bike yesterday and had a gash in his chin.  Looked really deep but we didn't want to traumatize him further by getting him stitches so we got out the cayenne, tea tree oil, and butterfly strips.  I put them on there and it was still dripping a little blood last night...dabbed it with a cotton ball but wanted it to air out during the night.  Now, today, it looks like it's pretty gunked up...It doesn't look red or infected...just really gunky from the oozing it did during the night.  I'm wondering if it'd be okay to dab some hydrogen peroxide on it so I can get a better look at it and clean it up some more?  Or should I just ignore the chunks of stuff on it and let it heal?
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