Puncture wounds is different from the majority of wounds, which cause visible tear of the skin. This type of wound is caused by a penetration of pointed objects that causes small hole puncturing the skin and the part beneath it. Puncture wounds on foot is quite common, especially when people go barefoot, such as in the summer or at the beach. Proper treatments for puncture wounds is definitely necessary, and these treatments should be done immediately after the injury takes place. If left untreated, puncture wound often causes more infections compared to cuts and other open wounds.
Why puncture wounds can be easily infected
There are some reasons why puncture wounds on your foot might be easily infected compared to cuts or other open wounds.
- The causal objects, such as nails, glass, needles, or tiny rocks might be embedded to the wound and thus, leave some dirt debris and dirt. All puncture wounds are considered dirty as it is caused by external objects that might have resided in dirty places for some time. Therefore, fail to clean puncture wounds thoroughly right after the injury causes the dirt to stay and increases the risk of bacterial infection.
- Most puncture wounds cause only a little amount of bleeding. Thus, many people often underestimate the severity of the wound and do not clean the wound properly. Since puncture wounds are commonly deep, they cause minimal bleeding, yet may affect some layers of the skin, making them quite severe.
- You might probably get a puncture wound when wearing socks or shoes, so that you do not notice it immediately. If the causal object is dirty and the wound is not immediately treated, it will be more prone to infection.
Puncture wound foot infection symptoms
Infection that comes from puncture wounds on foot can be minor and severe. Minor infection symptoms are commonly caused by the infestation of bacteria to the wound site, while more severe complications may involve tetanus, which can be life-threatening. Minor infections still require medical attention to prevent it from getting worse, so that the wound can still heal properly. Common symptoms to be anticipated include:
- Tender, bluish skin are around the puncture wound. This can be an initial symptom of bacterial infection.
- Abnormal swelling and the feeling of warmth around the wound site. Although some wounds may cause warmth around the site, this should subside within the first 24 hours after the initial treatment. If the warmth is persistent and accompanied by severe swelling, this might be a sign that an infection takes place.
- Pus drainage and fluid discharge from the wound. These might come from white skin cells that are dead while fighting the infesting bacteria. Pus drainage that has foul odor is a common sign of infection.
- Elevating pain around the wound site. Normally, pain caused by foot puncture wound is going to subside within days after the initial treatment. Elevating pain that causes you not to be able to walk properly needs to be observed, as it may be an early sign of infection, since puncture wounds may not only affect the skin surface, but also the beneath tissues and in more severe cases, the nerve endings.
- Fever or chill. Rising or dropped temperature is also a sign of infection to be anticipated, especially if it persists. High temperature accompanied by other symptoms, such as nausea or vomiting might be one of the symptoms of infection.
When to call a doctor
Even though you are not suffering from puncture wound foot infection, you need to seek medical attention when meeting these conditions over a puncture wound:
- Caused by dirty object from the soil or animal bites, either wild or domestic.
- Is suffered by a person with no tetanus shot before, or has not get any within the last 10 years.
- Is suffered by someone with health complication, such as diabetes.
- Causes bleeding that hardly stops within 45 minutes after the injury.
- Has a foreign object left inside or attached to the area around it and cannot be easily accessed.
- Causes severe tingling or burning sensation and is followed by numbness of the wound site or the area around it.