A scrape occurs if the skin is exposed to an object strongly enough to remove portion of the upper skin layer. This injury is at high risk for infection since the source is rarely an unsoiled object. Thorough cleansing and close monitoring for the early indications of an infection can help in preventing serious complications from developing.
Characteristic indications of an infected scrape
Since a scrape is often contaminated by gravel, dirt or other unclean materials that contains bacteria, there is a high risk for infection. Redness, pain, warmth and swelling of the skin around the site and drainage are the general indications of an infected scrape.
These indications might also occur with inflammation which is the initial response of the body to the injury.
When to consult a doctor
The drainage of pus is an indication of an infected scrape. If the pain intensifies as well as the redness and swelling particularly if the site of redness spreads outward from the wound, it requires further assessment and treatment by a doctor.
Remember that fever may or might not occur depending on the severity and extent of the infection. Individuals who have a weakened immune system might not experience the typical indications of infection. A doctor should be consulted after any injury if an individual uses any immune-suppressing medications or have a condition that weakens the immune system.
Quick Note / Disclaimer
The material posted on this page on an infected scrape is for learning and educational purposes only. To learn to recognize the indications of an infection, register for a first aid and CPR course with Vancouver First Aid.