What is wound packing?

Wound Packing
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Wound packing: Overview

If you have a deep wound, your doctor may show you how to pack it. This helps keep the wound clean. It also helps it heal more evenly, from the inside out.

You may be able to pack your wound yourself. Or you may need someone to help you reach it. It's important to wash your hands and keep the area clean when you pack the wound.

Ask your doctor how often to change the packing and what supplies to use.

Wound packing: When to call

Call your doctor now or seek immediate medical care if:

  • You have symptoms of a new infection or of an infection that's getting worse, such as:
    • Increased pain, swelling, warmth, or redness.
    • Red streaks leading from the area, or red streaks getting worse.
    • Pus draining from the area or more pus than the bandage can absorb.
    • A fever.
  • You have lots of bleeding.
  • Your wound is changing color or has a worse odor.

Watch closely for changes in your health, and be sure to contact your doctor if:

  • You do not get better as expected.

Packing a Wound at Home

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The content above contains general health information provided by Healthwise, Incorporated, and reviewed by its medical experts. This content should not replace the advice of your healthcare provider. Not all treatments or services described are offered as services by us. For recommended treatments, please consult your healthcare provider.

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