Knee laceration (cut in the skin)

Skin | Emergency Medicine | Knee laceration (cut in the skin) (Disease)


Lacerations of the knee refers to the cut on the knees and can involeve only the skin or be more complex affecting tendons, nerves, blood vessels or the joint. Tendon lacerations cause weakness in the leg movement, and with nerve damage numbness is experienced beyond the laceration. Deep lacerations that invade the joint space can be very serious since they can cause an infection in the joint.

Causes and Risk factors

The term laceration implies a torn or jagged wound. Lacerations tend to be caused by blunt trauma (such as a blow, fall, or collision). Cuts and lacerations are terms for the same condition.

The term gash can be used for more dramatic effect because it implies a longer or deeper cut. An avulsion refers to a wound where tissue is not just separated but torn away from the body.

Diagnosis and Treatment

Although it can be obscured by blood, a cut is one of the easiest medical conditions to diagnose. A deep cut, may reveal underlying tissues such as fat, tendon, muscle, or bone. Some people faint at the sight of their own blood (this is a neurological reaction in which a reflex slowing of the heart causes a low blood pressure called vasovagal syncope). Physicians need to distinguish this common faint from people who pass out from loss of blood (hemorrhagic shock).

Regarding the treatment, simple lacerations require only closure of the skin. More complex lacerations may require repair of tendons, nerves and/or arteries. ...

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