Laceration or Cut in Arms

Arms | General Practice | Laceration or Cut in Arms (Symptom)


Laceration is a cut, a torn, irregular wound. Laceration is an irregular tear-like wounds caused by some blunt trauma. Lacerations and incisions may appear linear (regular) or stellate (irregular). The term laceration is commonly misused in reference to incisions.

Diagnosis and Treatment

Treatment of recent lacerations involves examining, cleaning, and closing the wound. If there is a delay in treatment and the laceration occurred more than 6-24 hours before evaluation, it may be preferable to heal by secondary intention, due to the high rate of infection associated with delayed closure.

For simple lacerations, cleaning can be accomplished using a number of different solutions, including tap water, sterile saline solution, or an antiseptic solution, such as hydrogen peroxide. Infection rates may be lower with the use of tap water in regions where water quality is high. Evidence for the effectiveness of any cleaning of simple wound however is limited.

It is important to avoid putting alcohol, hydrogen peroxide, or iodine into a cut, which can delay healing. Delay in getting medical care can increase the rate of wound infection. If a cut results from a puncture wound through a shoe, there is a high risk of infection. Redness, swelling, increased pain, and pus draining from the wound also indicates an infection that requires professional care. ...

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