|Back to Index|
|Does this describe your child's symptoms?|
Click image for more info
Impetigo of Elbow
Lymphangitis - Left Forearm
Wound Infection - Suture Site
Symptoms of Wound Infections
Return to School
|When to Call Your Doctor|
|Call 911 Now (your child may need an ambulance) If|
|Call Your Doctor Now (night or day) If|
|Call Your Doctor Within 24 Hours (between 9 am and 4 pm) If|
|Call Your Doctor During Weekday Office Hours If|
|Parent Care at Home If|
|HOME CARE ADVICE FOR MILD REDNESS OF WOUND|
- Warm Soaks or Local Heat:
- For open cuts or scrapes, soak it in warm water or put a warm wet cloth on the wound for 20 minutes 3 times per day. Use a warm saltwater solution containing 2 teaspoons (10 ml) of table salt per quart (liter) of water.
- For closed or sutured cuts, apply a heating pad or warm, moist washcloth to the reddened area for 20 minutes 3 times per day.
- Cautions for sutured wounds: Avoid any moisture to wound for first 24 hours. Never soak the wound before all sutures are removed.
- Antibiotic Ointment: Apply an antibiotic ointment such as Polysporin 3 times a day (no prescription needed). If the area could become dirty, cover with a Band-Aid.
- Pain Medicine: For pain relief, give acetaminophen (e.g., Tylenol) or ibuprofen.
- Fever Medicine:
- Fevers only need to be treated with medicine if they cause discomfort. That usually means fevers above 102° F (39° C).
- Give acetaminophen (e.g., Tylenol) or ibuprofen (e.g., Advil). See Dosage Charts.
- Expected Course:
- Pain and swelling normally peak on day 2.
- Any redness should go away by day 3 or 4.
- Complete healing should occur by day 10.
- Contagiousness: For true wound infections, your child can return to child care or school after the fever is gone and your child has received antibiotics for 24 hours.
- Call Your Doctor If:
- Wound becomes more painful
- Redness starts to spread
- Pus, drainage or fever occurs
- Your child becomes worse
And remember, contact your doctor if your child develops any of the "Call Your Doctor" symptoms.
Disclaimer: This information is not intended be a substitute for professional medical advice. It is provided for educational purposes only. You assume full responsibility for how you choose to use this information.
Author and Senior Reviewer: Barton D. Schmitt, M.D.
Last Reviewed: 9/15/2011
Last Revised: 8/1/2011
Content Set: Pediatric HouseCalls Symptom Checker
Copyright 1994-2012 Barton D. Schmitt, M.D.